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Wedding Reception Lighting: Uplighting

Enhance your wedding reception through light:

Hands down, uplighting is the number one step to add to the mood of your room.  This method of lighting is one of the best ways to enhance your event space with the use of light. Uplight can be used to adding color to the neutral surface of your wall or highlight architectural features of your room such as columns and alcoves.

“What is uplighting”? Uplighting is when lights are placed on the ground focused upward to project a narrow beam (Spot) or a broad beam of light (wash) against a wall, column or object. You can use uplighting to personalize and enhance the atmosphere of your room.

Need to Knows
Understand the basics of uplighting at an event:

A narrow beam (Narrow Spot) of lights commonly produced by round PAR lighting fixtures (LED or Incandescent /Tungsten Lights) will produce strips of light against a wall or surface.  A blanket of colored light (Color wash) covering a wide area against a wall or surface is commonly produced with a longer bar shaped light that gives a wider beam spread.  A low white (or painted in a light color) ceiling approximately 12ft or less in height will reflective light and also produce a wash of color from PAR or longer bar shaped lights.


LED vs. Incandescent/Tungsten

The Pros and Cons of LED and PAR Can Lights:

LED Lights:

  • LED lights are more costly the PAR Can Lights
  • LED lights don't give off any or very low heat.
  • Most LED's require mixing of Red, Green, and Blue LEDs (RGB color mixing) to create various colors.
  • Lower power requirements
  • Offer the option for battery operated
  • Offer the ability for simultaneous color change


Incandescent/Tungsten Lights (PAR Cans):

  • PAR Can Lights cost less than LED Lighting.
  • PAR Can lights get hot and can burn skin if touched or melt an object if placed too close.
  • A colored gel is used with each PAR Can light to create color.
  • Require a lot more energy


Changing Up-lighting Color:

changing color schemes during your event:

LED Lights offer the option for color change throughout the night with the press of a button but a lighting Control (DMX Lighting Controller and DMX cables) is required to change their color simultaneous without changing color setting on each light one-at-a-time individually.  Each light must be connected with cables as a chain to one another and ultimately the Lighting Control to allow the option to control color change simultaneous.

Note:  Color change with Incandescent/Tungsten would require physically removing one color gel and replace it with a new color one-at-a-time for each light.

LED Lights equipped with Wireless DMX technology will not require cable to connect each light togther as a chain to the control but can be subject to issue with poor reception.  A light receiving a weak wireless DMX signal due to the distance or an environmental condition (including electronic interference) will affect an LED lights with wireless DMX ability to change color.    LED CAN be used for more colors at once

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