Do I Need Haze For My Event? – Whiteboard Wednesday


What’s going on, Endless fans? It’s Whiteboard Wednesday. We’re dropping some more knowledge bombs,
and today we’re talking about the most common question to get around lighting is do I need
haze at my event? The question is usually, yes, you want haze,
but we’ll talk about what that involves and why you want it really, really briefly. If you don’t know what haze is, it’s basically
a very thin particulate of fog, but it’s not the same thing as fog. If you’ve ever been to your Halloween party
where the DJ pumps on the fog and this big plume of smoke comes out and it’s super-thick,
that is not haze. Haze is actually so thin that you can barely
even tell it’s there most of time. It’s just there to make the lights look better,
which I’ll explain kind of how that works. Essentially, the way it works is as a very
thin, essentially mist, I will call it, in the air, of this haze. What it allows is that when light passes through
it, it bounces off of all these little particulates of vapor and basically creates the look of
the beam of light. Have you ever been out on a foggy day and
you’ve ever seen headlights and how you can see the beams of headlights? Same concept when it comes to haze. How can we recreate that effect and why do
I want it for my events? Well, let’s talk about it. Well, when you have haze for your event, particularly
it’s good when you have what are called moving headlights. These are the lights that spin in 360 degrees,
probably seen them at a club or concert, a lot of them have a very nice, cool tight beam
so then, in that way, when you add haze to them, you can get this nice little beam of
light. Now, you’re probably think to yourself, “Yeah,
that’s really cool, but why isn’t the moving headlight cool on its own?” Well, if you do no haze, these beams of light
disappear, and you don’t actually see anything between the light and where it projects. Instead, let’s say, for example, if this is
projecting a circle gobo, before it would show this nice big fat beam of light, but
now, it’s only going to show a circle gobo. No beam of light. It’s just going to show where the gobo is. This is totally fine, but to be honest, not
really worth the money. You spend all this money on nice lights, if
you’re going to have moving headlights, you might as well do haze. So, again, my recommendation, no haze, you
get just this gobo, whereas, when you get haze, you get this nice, cool beam of light. It allows you to fill the air and, to be honest,
adds a lot of energy to an event as well. You might be thinking to yourself, “Well,
yeah, I got to have haze now. I got to do this for my event.” Well, there’s a couple of things that you
got to know about when it comes to haze. First thing is there’s two different types
of haze. You have oil-based haze and water-based haze. The difference is that oil-based haze tends
to stay in the air a little bit longer than water-based haze. It can actually stay out a little bit further,
it usually gives you a bit more bang for your buck, but it has this oily texture to it. It leaves kind of I’ll call it an oil spill
around the haze machine, the hazer, whereas, water-based haze doesn’t stay in the air as
long. However, there are some good machines that
do last a long time, which your AV company should recommend to you, but it is more friendly
to venues. It doesn’t leave any sort of residue, it doesn’t
hang in air, it can’t get on carpet or anything like that. It’s a lot cleaner. With that being said, most venues are going
to require you use water-based haze, so if you are asking to do haze for event, just
make sure AV company is bringing water-based haze. Almost everyone has a water-based hazer for
their event. So something to keep in mind, oil versus water,
usually you want to stick with water. That’s the best way. If you’re doing an outdoor festival, though,
and the sky is the limit and you need to stay in the air as long as possible, you can do
oil-based all day long. Now, you’re probably thinking to yourself,
“Okay, I know the difference, I’m allowed to use water-based haze, but now the venue
is talking to me about all these kind of weird restrictions and things like that.” This is very, very common, especially in hotels
and convention centers. They’re going to put a couple of things on
you. If you’re outdoors and you’re not within any
buildings or anything like that, you’re not going to have any of these issues typically. But for indoor events, you will likely see
this. First thing they’re going to have to do is,
because you are putting particulate in the air, is that they can trigger fire alarms,
specifically, the sprinkler system, the smoke detectors. It can basically make you think that it’s
smoking inside the room and last thing we want to do is cause a fire alarm to come up
and the fire department show up. What a venue will do is actually forcibly
turn off a fire alarm. You might be thinking to yourself, “Well,
that could be dangerous, right, what if there’s an actual fire?” It’s a great point. Well, that’s why a lot of venues will require
you to bring down a fire watch. This is when they’ll contact the local fire
marshal, and they’ll actually have a fire representative come be onsite for your event. This is basically someone who helps monitor
to make sure there’s no fire. If there is, it can be handled all right. To be honest, I’m not a firefighter, so I
don’t know exactly what they do, but it’s something to keep in mind if you’re going
to use haze. It’s not just the cost of the haze machine,
which can be real cheap. It can be $100, $200 to rent, but the cost
comes in with bringing this fire watch down. They can charge somewhere $50 an hour, $100
an hour, $200 an hour, just to be there with, keep in mind, sometimes minimum calls as well. They might require you that they be there
for five hours, for example. So keep in mind that you might have to bring
a fire watch to replace basically turning off the fire alarm system. Well, what that also means as well in some
cases as well is that they also have to submit a permit and get approved as well. So the thing to keep in mind is not only you
have a financial responsibility or financial commitment, but also a little bit of a time
commitment as well. You can’t make this decision a week out for
an event a lot of the time because these permits sometimes take a couple of weeks to get done. For example, we have an event that they forgot
that we are doing haze, and even though we mentioned it to them, they forgot to submit
the permit. Well, by the time the event rolled around,
we ended up … turning out that they didn’t get the permit in time, now we can’t use haze. Well, what’s interesting is that the client
spent all this money on these fancy lights to make their event look fantastic, and now
they go from having these cool beams of light and everything, to kind of a little bit more
of a boring look. It’s not going to look crappy, by any means,
but it definitely won’t look as good. That’s why it’s important to make sure that
you submit your permits early on and that you talk to your venue early on about doing
haze, even before your contractor AV company even know if you’re going to do haze or no
haze. Because the best thing that you can do is
always say, “Nope, at last minute, we don’t need the permit, we don’t need the fire watch
because, guess what, we’re not going to do haze.” But if you are going to do it, you don’t want
to be caught behind the times. That’s it. Basically, do I need to use haze for my event? It’s obviously up to you and what you’re looking
for. Obviously, there’s lots of videos on YouTube
that show the difference between haze and no haze, feel free to google those. But the big thing is it makes your lights
just look better. The answer is up to you in whether you want
to have it, whether these are the headaches that you kind of want to deal with and the
things that you want to execute. Sometimes it can be pretty easy. Or if it’s worth it to make your lights look
a lot better. That’s all. I hope you really enjoy this video. I would love to hear your story and example
about how your event looked a lot better with haze, or maybe an example of how you got around
using haze for an event. Leave it down in the comments below and let
us know. We’d love to hear you. If you thought this video was super-duper
helpful, smash that Subscribe button and also that bell icon so you can get notified every
single Wednesday when we post Whiteboard Wednesday videos. That’s pretty much covers it for today. I hope you guys are having a fantastic day,
and we’ll see you Wednesday on Whiteboard Wednesday.

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