Author Topic: SCENERY: The spike tape thread of DOOM  (Read 15164 times)

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pilya29

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SCENERY: The spike tape thread of DOOM
« on: Sep 16, 2006, 03:33 pm »
hi to everyone!

hope you could help me with this. we have a current production, and our set is made of sand and gravel and stones. Im having problems in spiking because obviously any adhesive tape won't do because of the sand that's covering the whole floor. I can't use the stones in the area as markers because there are some dances/movements i don't want the actors to be tripped. i would appreciate your suggestions very much! thanks


« Last Edit: Jun 08, 2009, 11:52 pm by PSMKay »
tuff woman :)

Gina

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I came across this same problem in a show I did a couple years back. I don't remember all the posibilities, but we discussed led lights in the liner of the floor that would shine through the crumbled cork (wasn't quite sure how they planned on doing that though). It was a black box theatre without a lot of room for error. We ended up using a mixture of glow tape tick marks on the perimeter of the floor (dance numbers for crew basically) and the lighting designer also added some very minimal pools of light to mark the area for the key scenic pieces....it worked remarkably well....I was surprised. Let me know what you end up doing.

One thing I remember comming up alot was discussing the matierial we used too. There was worries about silicosis which can be caused by sand and fine dust particles. We ended up using crumbled cork. The floor had to be raked and walked through before every show, which took a little more time then your standard sweep/mop. We had discussed covering the ground with a tarp to reduce dust settling in the cork, but chose not to do it as classes were happening in the same area and were a trip/slip hazard. We lightly misted the air with a hudson sprayer to take out the dust after we raked the floor. We used a shop vac at strike to get it all up and that also worked fairley well. I dont know if any of this information helps you, but I figured it could hurt.

Best of luck with your show,
Gina

MatthewShiner

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What do you need to spike in the gravel and sand?

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Anything posted here as in my own personal opinion, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer - whomever they be at a given moment in time.

stagebear

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i heard that glueing white rocks down works well.

Mac Calder

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Look at an alternate way of doing it. Try marking the down stage edge every 2 meters, and the OP edge every 2 meters - creating a grid basically. It takes a bit of getting used to, but after a bit of practice, I have found it is a great way to get around a stage that cannot be spiked. If you have a good grid/flys, you can try tying glow string to the bars directly above where the set piece should be, or even use small LEDs and turn on the appropriate ones for set changes. I would not rely on marking the floor, as it is far too dynamic. The only way I can think of to make spikes remain in the same place would be to secure either the spiked surface to the floor, or use ribbon over the sand, both resulting in a trip hazard.

nmno

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Once upon a time I heard tale of a solution for just this kind of problem...  however, I can't recall the details; perhaps with some brainstorming...

Essentially, they rigged up some sort of light (laser pointer?) to point down from a batten/catwalk that would shine a beam of light down to the deck and you could use the spot of light as a spike.  Again, I can't recall WHAT they used (its beam wasn't visible, only the point on the stage) and I believe they had a way to turn it off/on for only the times they needed it (through the lightboard? run to a switch on deck?)  Any ideas?

MatthewShiner

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I think the answer lays in what and when you need access to the spikes.

If it is a pre-show thing, then you have lots of options (A grid, digital photos, building a cut out to lay on top of the deck with areas cut out, etc, etc)

If it is something an actor needs to see to put something down or hit a mark, then you are looking at a different situation - I would see if that section of gravel and sand be "PERMANENT" - glued down, and then you could lay down a spike, as long as that didn't disrupt the look or design.

If it is something that needs to happen during the quick change, and you light plot would open to it, I you could a special that is basically the spike that is projected down.

You can also be clever in how you sculpt the sand and rocks pre-show to make specific points.

We could come out with six or seven ways to do it . . . but with more specifics you could recommend a specific example.

I have had to do pre-sets before without any spikes, so you find cheats in the floor, take a lot of digital photos.

I did do a show in the sand last season, and for the actor spikes, we found ways (like be downstage of this brickwork, and just upstage of this boom.)
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Down2life

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I know with the advance of leds it would be very practical and affordable to insert single led lights into whatever decking you are using. These wouldnt generate a lot of heat but would have enough punch to mark your spikes. But that is all theroretical. Like a few above have said it really depends on wht your spiking.

pilya29

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thanks for all your suggestions! i would update all of you guys what we will do. as of now, the design still keeps on changing. hayyayaay! :) thanks evryone
tuff woman :)

prizm

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I had this issue once and we had a very easy but odd solution. We used our projector and focused it on the floor and had a power point of CAD spikes that we projected on the floor during the shifts. It took a while for the light guys to get it set properly with keystoning but they got it and the crew had to get used to not blocking the light. Regarding the sand issue itself make sure it is moist otherwise it can become rather dusty. slosh and Rake worked best for us.

Ran

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I believe that Mac Calder has a good option, (which we have used in a prodcution); it is mainly good when the production tours to deferent theaters, or in a theater when you have deferent shows on the same period.

Magaling!

Ran


AmSchultz

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Depending on how permanent you want it to be or how exact. you could be able to use some sort of color spraypaint or something to that effect.  Or you could wipe off the gravel/stones and spike it on the regular stage floor that way the spike itself wouldn't move.

geoffsm

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SCENERY: The spike tape thread of DOOM
« Reply #12 on: Oct 16, 2007, 04:09 pm »
I'm currently working on a. original production that takes place in Iraq (centering around the war)....our floor treatment is made to look like a dessert.  It's a burlap kind of material with those little tiny styrofoam ball/peanut things glued/painted on top.  It's a real mess, but it looks great.  The problem is....we don't know how we're going to get spikes to stick, because not only is it an painted and treated with stuff that is not tape-friendly, it's uneven (kind of 3D, what with the stuff glued on top).  So, I guess my question is....is there any alternative to spike tape that might function the same way, but work a little better in this situation?

Thanks.
« Last Edit: Jun 09, 2009, 01:19 am by PSMKay »

LisaEllis

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Re: Spiking on crazy floor treatment.
« Reply #13 on: Oct 16, 2007, 04:22 pm »
I've used paint pens before, although still seeing things on the bumpy surface might be difficult...

KMC

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Re: Spiking on crazy floor treatment.
« Reply #14 on: Oct 16, 2007, 04:28 pm »
I'd work with your scenic designer on this.  It's important in my opinion that spike marks fit in with the show, nothing drives me crazy like seeing a stage lit up like a runway. 

One option here could be to cut stencils out of matboard and spraypaint the spike marks onto the stage.  This should overcome the rough texture.
Get action. Do things; be sane; don’t fritter away your time; create, act, take a place wherever you are and be somebody; get action. -T. Roosevelt

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