Clay Paky delivers versatility to the X Factor

Posted on Tuesday, November 20th, 2012


As yet another successful season of The X Factor reaches its finale, lighting designer Ian Anderson can put away his creative hat in order to have a few days rest! Week after week Ian has consistently designed a splendid array of ‘mini lighting designs’ for individual contestants within the vast overall X Factor design.

Helping him along the way were thirty-four Clay Paky Alpha Beam 700 and forty-four Clay Paky Sharpy fixtures.

“Both the Sharpys and Alpha Beams have got to be some of the most versatile lights on the market today,” remarked Ian. “They have a great selection of gobos for beam effects, nice colour mixing and they are very reliable. Both types of units can also turn into very punchy wash units using the frosts.”

The Alpha Beam 700 was conceived as an automated ACL to create parallel light beams, visible even in the brightest scenes. Its small, lightweight, quick-moving body contains the most advanced technology for generating a bright beam that can be coloured and shaped at pleasure, for amazing dynamic mid-air effects.

“With shows that are based around a lot of LED screens its important to get the beams from the lights but they still need to be able to light things as well and this is where the Alpha Beams work well on camera,” commented Ian. “I might even hasten to say that wash lamps may be a thing of the past with fixtures like these on the market!”

Ian has extensively used the Sharpys this year for moments where he requires light to be the centre of attention. They have become a feature of many acts whether it is sixteen of them sitting onstage creating fans or eight circling above a piano casting gobos.

“The compactness of the fixtures have allowed us to really just throw them into any situation to be the feature as well as getting nice subtle looks with the rest of the rig,” he said. “The Sharpys are so small and light the hard working crew on X Factor can manage to get sixteen of them onstage, cabled and active in a four minute commercial break!” 

Ian has made use of the Sharpys the whole way through the series this time from the auditions tour, bootcamp, titles shoots and the live studio shows.