I've decided to split this topic off into another thread, separate from my helmets build thread. I've received a ton of requests on how to do lighting for IronMan helmets. Here I'll be covering a few of the basic lighting techniques that are used to light these helmets. I'll be showing these using the eye-pods that I've sculpted and molded.
This isn't the ultimate guide, but something to more spark your imaginations to create your own. But first some basics on LED lighting.
When using LED lights the biggest problem is diffusion. LED lights have a focal point or a focused area of lighting. Most LED lights need at least a 1/4 inch to properly diffuse or spread even and equal light, otherwise you get hotspots. Hotspots are where you can tell where the LEDs are, in other words not properly difussed.
One other thing, white reflects LED light MUCH better then using aluminum foil or silver paint. From my understanding it has to do with the wavelength and reflective properties of LED lights.
With these small little details lets move on to the lighting.
eye socket setup
LED lights (what lights the eyes)
fogged or translucent white lense (frontward facing eye lense)
black plastic or black vinyl (backing for white plastic so the light doesnt escpae)
white plastic (goes between outside lense and inside black plastic)
This is the most common and simpliest technique for eye lighting. Basically this method consists of a lense lit from the top and that does not completely cover the entire eye socket. The non covered part at the bottom leaves a small reveal at the bottom of the eye socket to see through. The front fogged lense will be backed by a white layer or plastic or your preferred material, then black plastic or vinyl.
Enough LED's to line the top and bottom of each eye socket
Clear plexiglass and reflective mirror tint
Eye lighting rig that can
Many of you have seen the Haunted mansion at Disneyland. The ghosts dining and dancing in the dining room use this same technique.
Simply this method uses a mirrored lens at a 45 degree angle. The LED light is reflected off the mirrored lens making the whole eye socket light up.This method is a little bit more tricky but the finished product gives you a more obscured vision as your looking through the faceplate.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YRnytAge-Ak Part 1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUkeR4fBhQQ Part 2
Next post I'll show how I set up create my "Eye pods".