Why Moving Lights aren’t just for rock stars: When Moving Lights DON’T Move!

I was recently speaking with a church tech director who was working out the details for a future lighting purchase and re-design.

He had already spoken with the sales representative at the company which they were going to buy the gear from, and “surprise, surprise” moving lights were on the list!

Because this church in particular is more traditional, they didn’t see the need or have the desire for moving lights.  After all, they weren’t going to be doing ballyhoos across the congregation anytime soon, and that’s what moving lights are for, right?


Moving lights don’t always have to be moving.  In fact, some of the most breathtaking looks they can create happen when they are still.

Check out this video that explains some more tame and “theatrical” uses for ML’s:

As you can see, moving lights aren’t just for rock stars!  In fact, there are many instances where I do shows pretty heavy in moving light count where they don’t move much.

Moving lights give you the ability to have multiple gobos, colors and positions at your disposal to create many looks from few lights.

And, you don’t have to get out a lift to change the focus!

Here are some photos that really help show some different “non-rock star” uses for moving lights:

Moving Lights - Gobos on Walls

This is a picture of a conference where I used the gobos and prism in the moving light to create a nice wall wash during the show and walk in/walk out.  I was able to change both the color and pattern for each session, creating a fresh feel every time the attendees walked in.

Gobo Moving Lights

In a similar “light”, this is a picture of a church event I did a number of years ago – it was actually my first time using moving lights!  Needless to say, I didn’t know much about how to move them around, but I did point those gobos at the ceiling and get a nice effect that made it safe to turn off the ugly fluorescent house lights!

When you’re able to project lights around the environment like this, it allows you to really shape the mood of the room to match what the presenters on stage are doing!

Moving lights as frontlight

This is a photo where the frontlight is a moving light.

The big advantage here is the ability to color change, move around and use gobos for more abstract pieces of music.  

ML’s were also a great choice because the artist had only a few hours to program their light now on the rig my company provided, so all time was precious!

Hopefully, you can glean some ideas from this on some different ways to light with moving lights and step away from the mythology that they have to move!

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