Within this lesson, we learnt about Lighting Engineers and how you could become one and what they actually do and are in charge of.
What Does a Lighting Engineer Do?
A lighting engineer is in charge of various different things, firstly, they are in charge of designing the light setup. This means the placement of the lights, working on a plan to find where they need to be as well as how the scene looks. This can link in with Genre and Semiology as they need to understand the genres very well to be able to use the correct lighting for the genre. They also maintain the lights by being able to make sure they’re working, know how to fix them etc. and they set up the lighting as well which must match the agreed design.
How do you become a Lighting Engineer?
A lighting engineer sadly is also linked to the theme of luck. Without any luck, you’re going to have a hard time being able to become one! The main way to get luck would firstly be through Work Experience. Work Experience is important because it’s something to easily come across. You could be working and doing the lighting for a theatre, and it proves that you are interested in the path that you’re taking. You could also go to University as that will allow you to build up some connections, gain the full experiences that you would need as well as have a provable level of education.
If you do end up going to University, this could lead onto one of three things. Firstly, it could lead onto an Internship which is where you’ll be working for free for a company that has all of the lighting setup. An advantage is you’ll gain more knowledge, however, you won’t be paid. You could also lead onto an Apprenticeship which would allow you to make money for being educated more on the specific task, and is only Monday to Friday from 9 to 5 (paid minimum wage). Finally, it could also lead onto Freelance, which is where you will only be needed for certain things, and you’re more self-employed rather than having a boss most of the time. Some of these could be “We need you for 8 weeks” so you work for those 8 weeks and get paid for the time you’re there.
I find this task was helpful as it allowed me to realise that becoming a Lighting Engineer is more difficult than I ever anticipated. Even though it’s not the career path that I would be too interested in at this moment in time, it was great to learn how it could be possible.