Wedding uplighting designers lit up the head table.

The Importance of Lighting for Wedding Receptions

Light Is A Major Player In Experiences

Designed experiences, be it weddings, corporate holiday parties, fundraisers, or any of the hundreds of reasons why people gather, are interpreted through your senses. Your enjoyment is less about what you do and more based on how you are made to feel. Because of this, memorable experiences are a combination of how your senses interpret sensory input and that input’s relationship to other experiences you’ve had. When you take in smells associated with the ocean, you feel warmer. Tasting foods with traditional uses of spices remind you of a feeling of family and comfort. Sense memory also applies to lighting.

beautiful barn lighting and chandeliers

Who knew a barn could be so beautiful?!!? Photo courtesy of Making the Moment

Many couples come to planning meetings with barely any information on the opportunities available with lighting. While most have made their own meals and done some interior decorating in their homes, few have had the chance to really play with light for a desired effect of influencing how people feel. Lighting at events most experience, if done properly, don’t cause attention to the lights themselves. Instead, the lighting enhances the overall experience.

When clients initially come to us, they often believe that uplighting is the only way to use light to further design their venue because those are the lights that are the most obvious when they attend events themselves. We asked to match their wedding’s colors for the entire room, which we can of course do. However, we first make sure to educate them on the impact of light on guests’ emotions. We also describe the different types of lighting design available to them due to our vast inventory and experience.

Colors Affect Moods

Bride and groom share their first dance under pink lighting and chandeliers

The perfect lighting can take your venue from pretty to WOW! photo courtesy of Making the Moment

Brands spend a lot of money and time on choosing just the right colors for their branding to evoke emotion from you. Event lighting can make you feel different emotions subconsciously as well. Yellow and brighter colors can give a person a feeling of daylight and sun.  Positive memories are often associated with bright colors. While red lighting is very dark and edgy and might be more appropriate for a bachelor party than a wedding. Event lighting isn’t just ROYGBIV (Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, and Violet). We can combine colors to give you more desirable results. That same red light as an accent with white, or brighter colors, can produce some warm beautiful looks that are much less aggressive.

The Blue Spectrum

Blue lighting (depending on the shade) can be beautiful or completely change the view of the room

Cleveland City Hall rotunda lighting DJ

Lighting at Cleveland City Hall Rotunda in different colors can help bring focus to different areas at your event

If we lean towards a layered darker blue, your guests eyes will naturally feel droopy and heavy. This will give a more subdued tone to the experience. Blue lighting isn’t a natural color our eyes are used to and it can make the room look very cold very easily There is a reason words like “cold” and “chill” are used to describe encounters and these feelings translate to color psychology as well. Blue can also help literally translate your intentions as well. We’ve washed bars in blue to make it more obvious that they’re an oasis from the more kinetic and energetic portions of the event.

Lighting and Food

Nothing says “cold food” like deep blues. Desserts, raw bars, and really anything meant to be served cold are accentuated by blue hues. Lighting with more natural and crisp incandescent temperatures makes stations and displays look like pieces of art without modifying the caterer’s intention. We love collaborating with venues and catering teams to play into their intent versus detract or confuse the decisions that they made. While the blue effect for chilled food is a favorite, our catering friends are even more prone to want warm food tightly highlighted with reds and orange glows

Bride and groom kiss at Cleveland Courthouse wedding reception

Bride and groom dance together at their wedding at the Cleveland Courthouse. Photo courtesy of Making the Moment

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From a Venue to Your Vision

Some spaces are naturally beautiful. With lighting, in spots like that, we enhance without overtaking it. This technique helps highlight the architecture.  Layering lighting with pillars and supports can also define the space in the evenings without the aide of natural light. When we scout a venue for lighting we check for power sources. Then look to the ceiling to see what support is possible. We take into account the size of the room, ceiling height, decor and walls and many other variables before we make recommendations to our clients. After a few decades, we’ve learned a lot about the most popular spaces in Cleveland, Akron, Canton and everywhere in-between.

The Value of a Lighting Specialist

If lighting is an important element of your event’s design, choosing a specialist is important. You can over do and under do lighting. Therefor, make sure you hire someone who can interpret your goals. You also need to be able to ensure the services offered to you are the right scale. Some of our clients only required static lights, which are light fixtures that remain the same color in the same position all even long. While others were looking for a more dynamic effect that only comes with adding a lighting designer to the team. The designer has similar skills to a DJ but works in light rather than sound with the ability to change, dim, point, and spotlight different fixtures with colors to create different moods and looks through the evening.

Bride and groom dance at their wedding

Bride and groom sharing their first dance on their wedding night at the Tudor Arms hotel in Cleveland

Why Selective Sound Entertainment?

We have the passion for creating vision and not just selling lighting fixtures and packages. For years, we have assessed pictures of every event we used event lighting at. Our team critiqued each one to see if there was anything we could learn. This takes a lot of the guess work out of the process because of our experience and drive to innovate.

Our deep inventory of equipment includes staples, effects for different scales and newer technologies such as our magnetic battery operated pin spots which have revolutionized pin spotting on tables. Our wireless LED lights warm walls and wash ceilings even in buildings with limited power access. We have a separate lighting and production division so we literally have millions of dollars worth of lighting and production equipment available when needed.

Selective Sound Entertainment will under-promise and over-deliver on time, every time. We’ll walk you through the different possibilities and looks with each and every budget.

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Jay r Rich

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