When you have cameras, there are a few things that you NEED quick control over during your show. Let me show you how I lay out my consoles for live shows with cameras (which is every show these days!
Cameras are likely to be present at almost all events these days so it is incredibly important to be aware of the special types of setups that will work beautifully along with camera use whether it just be from audience phones or professional use cameras.
Consistency and a well-managed console are key!
Your console will likely have a main playback section with ten faders, and you may find it helpful to have a five-fader side car.
The biggest thing to be aware of is making sure your main light level on your presenters is uniform all the time. Left to right and front to back on the stage should be even to the best of your ability.
If there are solo performers or spotlights needed on stage, you want to be sure to take the time to balance those so that the spotlight and any front light that you are using from your rig are the same brightness.
When it comes to managing these things during your show, depending on your layout, you want to have a fader dedicated to every light on stage that you want to control the intensity of at any time.
More often than not you will have cues that will turn on the entire rig and then use inhibited faders to subtract pieces. Every part of the stage that you want to have independent control over will need its own fader.
This is because one of the things you often run into in lighting an event where you don’t have a lot of time is that different colors will usually be different levels of brightness. To the naked eye this is generally not an issue because the eye adjusts to the lighting changes; however, a camera does not. Having your backdrop lights on their own inhibiting faders allows you to manually set the level of intensity to ensure that they always look great on camera.
Each type or set of lights for your show should follow this protocol so that if the presenter happens to move to a place on the stage where it is dark, and you wish to optimize for video you can subtract the lighting that is directly behind them and balance everything out with ease.
Giving yourself the ability to easily adjust your backlighting as well as other lighting on stage using faders helps you to be able to deal with any type of situation or change in movement on stage, even if it is not planned. You have quick access to every light you may need to be able to make the necessary adjustments and ensure that not only the present audience gets a great view, but that every camera present will also get a great shot which will directly reflect on you and your presentation.