Updated: Apr 6, 2021
Every now and then someone asks me about app recommendations for light diagrams. So I decided to share my favorites here:
SHOT DESIGNER: As it is the application that I normally use to shot list, both on the computer and on iOS devices, and it has the ability to place light icons, it is practical to do on it. I use it for simpler setups. Available for Mac, PC, iOS, and Android in a paid or free version with limited resources. It is even the app used in several posts on the instagram profile @filmlights, which is incredible by the way, I print several posts for future references and / or ideas for techniques. Here is a light diagram that I did for the camera test of the short film "Next" as an example.
LIGHTING DESIGNER: This is the most complete app, with several types of light and at the end, it generates a list of equipment that can be shared with the team. They recently included the possibility of making exposure calculations and by subscribing to a Crescit premium account it is possible to have access to more than 25,000 lighting, grip, gels and etc., but I did not use these resources. I really like the various functions of this app, for example, it is possible to lock the aim of the light on an object and as it is moved, it always follows that object. The difficulties I had is that on my Ipad, which is the 6th generation and not a Pro, the application crashes when I work on very large maps. I wanted to use it for the sets of the Netflix show "Invisible City", but unfortunately it did not cooperate. It works for iOS and is paid for, costing $ 24.99. I hope they release a version for the computer where this is resolved. The following is a light diagram of a shot of the short film "Nossa Carne de Carnaval" as an example.
FILM SET OBJECTS: This is what I have used most recently, it is not an app, but a library of digital illustrations representing some lights and other useful objects, where it is possible to manipulate in Photoshop, Illustrator, and some other options that they indicate on their website. The first time I used it was to make the light diagrams of the scenarios of the show "Invisible City" and I did it in Photoshop on the Mac. Recently I have used it on my Ipad in a combo of the Concepts + Dropbox app open side by side, they explain how to do it on their site. This made the process even easier. It is possible to do everything through the cloud through Google Drawing too, but I haven't done it using this technique yet, but it would be the most affordable for not having to pay for the other applications. This library sells for $ 49.00 and the functionality is very cross-platform. Following is a light diagram of the show "Invisible City" made on Photoshop and a light diagram of a scene from the music video of "Gaby Amarantos - Venus in Scorpio" made on Concepts + Dropbox.
SIDUS LINK "DIAGRAM MASTER": This is an amazing app used to control Aputure lights using Bluetooth Mesh technology, where each device amplifies the signal to the other, thus facilitating communication for controlling the light. It is possible to create effects, in addition to using several already programmed that come from the factory. It is worth digging that you can do a lot of things. Since the conversation is about a light diagram, they recently updated it with a new feature: the Diagram Master. The last time I saw it was only for the iPhone, but I believe it will soon be available for Ipad and Android. It is very practical, has a nice look, makes a list of light and accessories, and also calculates how much energy you need for the scene, in addition to being free. I haven't had the opportunity to use it yet, but I found it very interesting, looking forward to using it on my next project. Here is an example from the Sidus Link website.