The Digital Scenic

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Scenic Artists have been painting scenery for well over a hundred years. Many of our practices, tips, and tricks date back to before the Renaissance. However times are changing and technology has changed in leaps and bounds over the past century, and with the advent of computers and digital printers we need to learn to keep up.

This is our page to keep up with Modern Technology. Please contribute with what brands and companies that you use, as well as your tips and tricks.


OverHead Projectors

  • Basic Tips and Tricks
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    • Enlarging tip - in the off chance that the transparency you are working from has not been printed large enough and you can't get the projector far enough way and keep a small piece of thin plexi around - using small blocks of wood or spools of thread (no more than 2") you can lift the plexi above the surface and thus putting your image that much closer to the lens - it will usually increase your projected image by about 25%


  • Brands of Projectors
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Digital Projectors

Overhead projectors are getting harder to find at a reasonable cost, and can only be used horizontally (like on a table) Digital Projectors are coming down in cost, can be much smaller in weight and size for transport. Many of them can even be hung from a pipe making projecting onto the floor for a complicated layout of a drop or floor that much easier to accomplish.

  • Basic Tips and Tricks

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  • How To Connect to a Computer

Yes you will need a computer to connect to the projector. Most projectors offer at a minimum a VGA (analog) connector for a computer and a composite video connector for video equipment. If your computer has a digital output, you may also want a digital connection on the projector, because it will eliminate any chance of problems, such as jittering pixels caused by poor signal synchronization.

Diagrams of how to connect the computer to projector [1]

      • VGA - This is your standard monitor cable. It is typically male-to-male with three rows, 15 pins. A VGA cable is used for computer to monitor, or computer to projector connections.
      • HDMI - HDMI stands for High-Definition Multimedia Interface. It transmits uncompressed digital video and audio over a single, compact cable. The type, amount and speed of data HDMI carries expands with each HDMI release.
    • What is a BALUN / extender?

In basic terms a Balun is often called an "extender" They are adapters you get to boost the signal strength of a the video/projection and will often require extra cables and adapaters. You will need this if the computer will be far away from the projector and will require a CAT5 cable.

If you really want to learn more here is great little article with way too much info [2]


  • Brands/Types of Projectors

Choosing the right projector is key. Knowing what features they have and are best at is key. Most of the Content below has been taken from the following article [3]

Most models are sold either as data or business projectors, or as home-theater, home-entertainment, or video projectors. Any projector that handles video well should also do a good job with photos, since photos have a lot in common with video, but without the added complication of movement, which opens the door to additional image artifacts.

    • Short-Throw Projector

Do you need a short throw—meaning the ability to cast a given-size image at a short distance from the screen. Short-throw projectors let you throw a large image in tight spaces, and also minimize the risk of people getting in front of the projector and blocking part of the image. While most projectors can throw an approximately 6-foot-wide image from roughly 12 to 15 feet away, most short-throw projectors need 3 to 6 feet, and ultra-short-throw projectors generally need less than a foot.

Downsides of short-throw, and especially ultra-short-throw, projectors are that they are more expensive than traditional models with long-throw lenses, and tend not to do as well in large conference rooms and small auditoriums. They also require a very flat and stable screen, or the image may suffer some distortion.

    • Enter make and model with a personal review here

List of 2017 projectors can be found here [4]

Digital Printing

No one wants to hear that the hire-ups have decided to print a drop, or other cool projects instead of paying a scenic artist to do it, and who often would have done it better, but it happens, and will continue to happen. More often than not, the Scenic Artist is often even tasked with helping top create and or order the digital print.

  • Basics for creating the content to be printed.
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  • Companies that Print digitally
    • enter company info here along with a brief review
  • How to fix a badly printed drop
    • Often the file given to the printer is not good enough in quality, or has mistakes, the scenic artist is still asked to fix it. So how do we do that? Please share your tips and tricks below!
    • enter tips and trick here