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No misty dream to the initiated

No misty dream to the initiated

UK – Long days in the sun and surf, long nights lost in music. That’s the promise of Boardmaster, Europe’s leading celebration of all that is surfing. Grown from small beginnings in 1981, Boardmasters has become the epitome of boutique festival going, an event packed day and night with a feast for all the senses, not least visuals. “We’re doing something quite different at the Unleashed stage in the Big Top this year”, said Rhodri Shaw of Video Design. “That’s as well as provide the big IMAG screens for the main stage.”

Shaw as project manager for Video Design, has been instrumental in driving the development of LED at Boardmasters and it’s not as straight forward as it sounds. “The Unleashed stage is a saturation situation with pumping music from the likes of Groove Armada and Roni Size. The designers asked that we provide great arches skinned with LED screen modules down the length of the tent to exaggerate the visual dynamic. We commissioned some custom metal work to make this look as slick as possible, coupled with our 9mm high definition LED modules and streamed with light and content, the arches appear to almost dangle in the air.”

On the main stage fans will see the likes of headliners Bastille, Rudimental and Faithless, and even here there are some unusual challenges for video “Yes the screens are all IP65 as you’d expect,” said Shaw. “But the real challenge is dealing with the varying light levels. Main Stage has the sun behind it for most of the afternoon, so you need to ramp levels up, gradually winding them down again as the sun sets. But not long after it sets a coastal mist tends to develop so you can’t just walk away when it gets dark, you need to monitor output, gently raising as required to cut through the mist. When you’ve got 25,000 people watching you’ve got to stay on the case; it’s one of the things I like about working with Video Design; everyone is committed. It’s a very vibey atmosphere at Boardmasters and we aim to keep it that way.”

2nd September 2015

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