Axxis Blog

Cocktail Napkin Design at 30,000 feet



Tuesday, February 05, 2013
Cocktail Napkin Design at 30,000 feet

Flying back from Tampa on December 7th...we were inspired by a conversation two nights earlier with a Tampa-based client of ours.  Their directive was to “push our design envelope”.  
At 30,000 feet inspiration hit.
Circles were everywhere - the ring of coffee on the back of the in-flight cocktail napkin, the semi-circle of the device that holds up the food tray, the air vent above…  The coffee stain turned into 20ft turntable doodle (of course) – a perfect reveal for a band on closing night or a possibly a huge reveal to begin the finale for an amazing event.  And, if we put a LED wall on the turntable and curved it...well that might answer the desire for a more technological look for this leading edge tech company. Now, what if we flanked the turntable with more LED (yes!) and put it on traveler track (why not) to have even more reveal and endless interesting walk on opportunities?  
Then we realized that we had another customer that this design would be perfect for at their annual national sales meeting.  But this meeting was less than two months away and we already had an approved design and budget!  

So, we got off the plane and pulled the entire team together on that same day at 4pm to see if we could pull this design together in time.  We would have to work over the Christmas and New Year holiday to pull this off with all the engineering and research.  We’re quite sure that everyone wanted to stick around for a last-minute 3 hour “inspired by coffee rings on a beverage napkin” meeting on a Friday. Even so, the team agreed that we wanted to take this project on. Team buy in was only step one.   We penciled out a budget and with no time to waste, contacted our client and pitched the idea.  (Nervously, we might add.)  Their excitement matched ours and on that next day (Saturday!) - they agreed to the new design and budget.  

The result is captured on these videos.  We are now working on modifications of the design for other clients including the inspiration behind the design...our Tampa based client. 


For the record, we never showed the team that napkin...we drew the idea on a flip chart in the conference room.  After all, we couldn’t bring home the interior cabin of the plane either…

conklin band reveal from Courtney Powell on Vimeo.

conklin grand reveal from Courtney Powell on Vimeo.

Testing 1....2....3....

Thursday, November 22, 2012
The wireless system for programmed lights along 4th Street (I mean Santa Clause Lane) worked perfectly last night during our first test of the 4 block wireless DMX system for tomorrow nights Light Up Louisville.  It’s a good thing that Plan A worked because Plan B was...make Plan A work!  We have over 150 lights controlled with Wireless DMX running the length of 4 city blocks.  We used existing power from street light poles to power both the wireless system and the lights themselves.  The system worked and we were able to control all the lights wirelessly.  Thousands of hours went into the planning and now execution of this ambitious plan.  After seeing what was accomplished in year one of the re-envisioned “Light Up Louisville & 40 Nights of Lights”, were even more excited about what this idea will evolve into in coming years.  

Here is a short video of the test.  The beams you see are the new Elation Platinum Beams (15R).  The other lights are less visible in the video as they are washing sidewalks near each column.  Building wash lights are next along with gobo projectors.

LUL from Courtney Powell on Vimeo.

The Stage is SET!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

We’ve added a twist to the stage for the launch of Light Up Louisville (I guess because we didn’t have enough to do).  After seeing the results of the clear stage top, we are really glad we made this design decision.  The large LED display or “Jumbotron” will be lifted above the stage.  The clear top will allow all to see the live and recorded videos as well as the fireworks going off behind the stage.  I’m sure we will have some more pictures on this on Friday after the launch.

Now we know how the Elves must feel.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

 We’ve been working behind the scenes for about 2 months straight coming up with plans for an on-street lighting show each night between Thanksgiving and New Years in Louisville, KY.  It all starts with the launch of “Light Up Louisville” where tens of thousands of eager Louisvillian’s will pack 4th Street to see the arrival of “the real Santa Clause”.  Every year, Santa descends on Louisville to help our Mayor turn on the Community Christmas Tree and launch a lighting and pyrotechnic show.  The next night, just 7 nights away from today, will start a new tradition of a lighting show along 5 blocks of 4th Street set to a series of Christmas songs.  We had to overcome a series of challenges to get to the point where TODAY we start to build the infrastructure for the show.  We will give further detail in our Case Study section as the amount of challenges and solutions were substantial.  We designed and are constructing columns around light pole so we can mount intelligent moving lights to the structure. Power to operate the lights will come from the existing light poles.  Each pole will be different depending on the power available in the pole.  Some poles will have 4 lights and some will have 5.  We are sending the signal to every light via a wireless system.  We are sending sound signals to speakers in much the same way as the lighting.  We still have lights on the way...some from Italy and some from China.  We have prepared as much as possible and now just have to execute the plans that have been months in the making.  More later on this project in this blog and in our case study area.

When the campaign season is over what else is there to do...

Monday, November 12, 2012

Throw a party of course!  Axxis produced a back to the 80s themed party, turning a horse barn into a 1980s dance club for the GOP of Ohio...at least they can say John Boehner won!  We even had a fully functioning arcade area to sooth and distract from their pain.  

With our high resolution video wall creating a jumbotrons flanking both sides of the stage everyone had a great view of the band.  And, the LED dance-floor...way cool!  Over 100 moving head light fixtures had the room glowing.  We put the  line array on towers which sounded amazing.    Two venue profiles by degidesign for front of house and monitor console rounded out the audio gear list very nicely.

We will have much more details about this great event in a case study to be published very soon.  

This was fun!  Please have us back!  Please!

Hola from Fajardo, Puerto Rico!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Axxis crew - along with a "mucho" loved local crew are currently breaking down the general session audio, video, and lighting for the Tech Select partner conference here at the El Conquistador resort in very sunny Puerto Rico! After an uneventful(but long) trip from Louisville, KY (and only one lost suitcase - belonging to yours truly!) - the Axxis crew began loading in the General Session ballroom and several break out rooms. The General Sessions kicked off with an original "Pirates of the Caribbean" themed opening video created for Tech Select - by Axxis. A highlight of the conference included a keynote speech by former Florida State University Head Football Coach  - Bobby Bowden. The sun must have really influenced our lighting and audio leads - as it appears that they are moving load out along by folding drape!


We'll see you stateside soon!

They Like Us...They Really,  Really Like Us!

Thursday, November 01, 2012

 This luncheon event honors the behind the scenes individuals working in the hospitality industry.   But the real stars of the show were (in our humble and unbiased opinion) the Axxis team and the tools (or are they toys?) that we brought to the party.  The top award go to the LED panels that were the centerpiece of the stage.  Our scenic and lighting team did an outstanding job transforming the ballroom.  LED lighting instruments gave color to the fabric accents that framed the stage.  Two Sony broadcast cameras brought the on-stage action to the large screens so everyone could share in the proceedings.  Flawless execution of all the PPT,  audio, lighting, and video cues was best summarized afterward by our client.  She said this was the first time in 8 years that she didn't have a single thing to worry about during the actual show.  That’s always nice to hear.  OK, so the hug was nice too!

 

Ta Da!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Lantech Load in Continues....Check out that Screen!  Another great shot of our LED Video Wall!

Have Jumbotron, Will Travel

Friday, October 26, 2012

The centerpiece of the Lantech booth at PACK EXPO International 2012 is the Axxis LED Video Display Wall.  Of course, we all know that PACK EXPO is the largest, most comprehensive processing and packaging event in the world.  Right?  Yep, we do now!  Axxis helped Lantech with Lighting and Audio for this years booth along with our attention-getting LED Video Wall.  The Axxis creative team also developed a custom motion graphic package for display on the video wall.  Live demos will be featured during the trade show to further exploit this amazing video display.  We kind of feel bad for all the other booths at the EXPO.  

Lantech is a Louisville, KY based company that makes some pretty cool packaging machines for industry.  We really don’t know exactly what they do...we just know they have great taste in AV production companies.

Load in is almost done!  We will post again with some more photos of the competed booth.

Check out the videos in the “our work” section of this website for the posting of the videos we developed for Lantech.  The machines they make really are very cool...check them out in the videos.

There's no such thing as a 'pretty good' electrician

Friday, October 26, 2012

San Diego delivered a Sunny and 72 degree week..again, as we welcomed 1,200 deans of accredited business schools from all over the globe.

I got to experience my first tremor at breakfast.  It felt like I was the only one in the restaurant that even noticed.

This particular show was even more special than most.  Not only did we do the audio, lighting, and video, we also produced animated graphics and printed stage graphics.  Our clients loved the look of the room.  On setup day, all of them were in the general session room with their Ipads taking video to send back home.  Technology!

The show went off without a hitch as I'm really used to with our spot-on operations team.  We also had a great local support team to help with setup and run breakouts.

Tuesday noon came, end of show.  We had to bring it all down FAST.  Loaded the truck at 4p and loaded into a ballroom at 7pm in Palm Springs for a Fortune 100 Tech company!  The drive through the desert was beautiful but somewhat nerve-racking going around curves with 2,000' drops.

Overall, it was a great week but glad to be heading home to Louisville.