Stage Designs

Throwback: 90’s Glow

Matt Groves from The Naz in Grove City, OH brings us this glow in the dark set inspired by Coldplay. (originally posted April 2013)

They achieved the effect using fluorescent paint and black lights. Since fluorescent paint is so expensive, they tried creating a “homemade” fluorescent paint from some recipes they found online. The recipes said to mix laundry detergent with optical brightener with regular household paint, but that didn’t work at all. So they had to break down and buy the expensive stuff. They bought a gallon of pink, orange, blue, green, and yellow of Rosco’s fluorescent paint at Stage Lighting Store.

The artwork was painted on 40 sheets of 4’x8′ plywood (which they bought on sale). The plywood was first painted black, then strokes of “crayola” colored household paint, then white where the artwork was going to be, then the fluorescent paint on top of the white to help it glow better.

The piano was an actual upright piano they found on craigslist for $150. They bought it, gutted it, and placed a digital keyboard in the shell. This allowed them to paint the piano itself, have a “vintage grungy” look, and still have amazing sound from the digital keyboard.

Luckily their kids/youth ministries had quite a few black lights. They ended up only needing to buy 6 LED blacklight bars. In total 17 blacklights were used.

Overall this project ended up costing around $3200. Supplies used are below…

– 40 sheets of 4’8′ plywood
– 6 gallons of flat black paint
– 3 gallons of flat “crayola” colored paint
– 5 gallons of fluorescent paint
– 17 blacklights
– 4 cans of fluorescent spray paint







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