18th November, 2016

How To Use Wash Lighting To Stand Out

Wash Lighting is a fantastic way of setting the mood and adding some colour to your event. A wash light can be used anywhere! Whether you’re at a party, wedding or at a live show, you might not even realise the impact it has on the atmosphere.

A wash light typically comes in the form of a ‘can’ and many people choose to simply use it on its own. This is totally fine, but playing around with multiple ‘cans’ and colours will produce a more visually striking effect.

Here are some ideas to play with:

Clean and Simple

Using a single wash light to colour an area is a clean, simple method of creating a tone. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, sometimes less is more!

Top Product: If you’re looking for something low budget with plenty of power to do the job, the AVE Par64B is an excellent LED RGB Can well suited to simple wash lighting.

Mix Your Colours!

Not every par can will offer the same colours. Some have more, some have less. If you want to get really creative, you can mix your colours to create an awesome effect.

RGB Lighting stands for Red, Green and Blue. Amber and White are often included in the pricier RGB cans. This presents the opportunity for the additive colour theory. You can mix colours by fading up and down the coloured LEDs or by pointing two lights in the same area from about the same position. For example, mixing Red and Blue can make a Pink wash effect. This theory allows for deep colour mixing.

  • Red at Full + Green at Full = Yellow
  • Red at Full  + Blue at Full = Magenta
  • Green at Full + Blue at Full = Cyan
  • Red at Full + Green at Full + Blue at Full = White

Top Product: For something extra special, the new Chauvet DJ Slimpar Pro H USB offers Red, Green, Blue, Amber, White and even UV Light! You can do some incredible colour mixing with this powerful can.

Colour Reflects Mood!

Depending on the occasion, you’ll want to select appropriate colours. Some colours may be too harsh for an event. This is particularly important when it comes to stage lighting. Creating an atmosphere for any event can be crucial.

A general guide of colours and moods are as follows:

  • Red = Anger, Jealousy, Fear
  • Pink = Love, Light and Airy
  • Yellow = Poppy, Bright and Happy
  • Amber = Awakening, Rootsy and Raw
  • Green = Rootsy, Organic, Calming, Earthy
  • Aqua = Gentle, Simple, Water
  • Blue = Water, Night-time, Calm, Sullen
  • White = Open, Raw, Unfiltered

The softer colours such as pink and amber might be more appropriate for weddings. On the other hand, the deeper colours might be better for a party.

If you want to get SUPER creative, you can even create monochromatic colour schemes. This is perhaps more useful in stage lighting. Using different shades, saturations and the brightness can change the tone of the night.

Top Product: From Chauvet DJ’s latest range of wash lighting is the SlimPar Pro Q USB. It features Red, Green Blue and Amber diodes for incredible rich colour, perfect for setting the tone of your evening.

Wash Lighting Angles

If you have multiple par cans, you might even want to try different angles, making each can compliment each other. This point also ties in with colour mixing.

You can position the lights straight up or down. Maybe even try a triangle shape where two cans can cross over each other, creating a third colour.

Top Product: For an old school effect, try a pin spot with a mirror ball! Chauvet’s new Pinspot 3 is perfect to aim at a mirror ball or for highlighting smaller areas such as a table.


Final Product

In the end, there is no right or wrong way to do it! If it looks good, it’s right! There are no set rules. Just be creative and play around with it!

If you would like to see some wash lighting on display, feel free to visit your local DJ City store.