Welcome back to 18 in 2018. On day 16, I want to show you a really simple convention that I use to store those temporary looks you need. OK, what am I talking about when I say “temporary look?” What I’m referring to is a DMX output that has to be live on stage for some amount of time, and this look typically needs to be up while you’re working on real cues that will actually make it into your show file. For example, when you’re building a show, but your crew needs certain lights on and in certain looks: maybe to focus, or maybe to troubleshoot. Sometimes those looks will be up for just a few seconds, other times they can be quite time consuming, and the last thing you want is to leave this information in the programmer and accidentally store it into a real cue. Instead, I keep a storage cue for just such occasions.
As always, lets start with backing up our show and renaming it to reflect the day. If you don’t have the showfile- take a second to download it from the link in the YouTube description, or at my website, consoletrainer.com.
The key with this “Temporary Look Storage” cue is continuity. That means using the same practices each time. For example, you want to try and store this cue in the same place in all of your showfiles, whenever possible. For me, thats somewhere around button 206 under the multi-touch screen. And because I want it always in the same, place- I’m going to store an empty look on the page I’ve designated Fixed- page 1 – and then I’ll hit FIX and touch it to ensure that it’s on every page. I like to call it TEMP (not to be confused with the TEMP mode of an executor), but you should call yours whatever you like. Next is to set a couple of options to this sequence. Since I want the benefit of the speed of turning this look on and off, I want to make sure its set as a Toggle. Next, I want to change some settings. Under Playback, I want my priority to be HIGH. You could even choose SUPER, but I haven’t found that to be necessary. I also want AUTO STOMP on to help override effects. I turn off the button called “OFF ON OVERWRITTEN”, so another cue doesn’t accidentally kill my look. These settings will ensure that this sequence will have priority over other sequences I might run while I’m building my show. At least until I turn it off.
Cool, now I have the groundwork, so when someone needs a temporary look on stage, I can just store that directly into this button, play it back, clear out- and get on with my real programming. I use this same button over and over, so when that look is done, I toggle it off. When the next temporary look is needed, I create it and when I go to STORE to this button, I make sure and choose OVERWRITE. These aren’t looks I’m going to continue to build off of so there’s no need to keep the old looks. They’re basically garbage values that we won’t see in the real show.
You might be thinking- I’ll just use park. And there are some times when park does make more sense. But, the benefit of this over park is simple. It’s speed. When I’m done with that temporary information, I just toggle the button off. No hunting down which fixtures are parked and then unparking them. Storing it is also easy, because the button is always in the same place, with all the options already laid in. Just make sure to always choose OVERWRITE.
The last thing I would encourage you to do with this button- if you’re not the operator of the show- is to be sure to delete it before you hand off the show file for the real live operation. You don’t want your operator to accidentally play back some weird look during the show.