Big Grace

Patrick from Grace. Church in Buchs, Switzerland brings us this Grace logo.

From Patrick: For our new church name we wanted to have a stage design that expresses the core of our messages “Grace”. So we sat together and drew some sketches, and once we decided on this way, we made detailed drawings of the design. The pattern of the LED strips should as much as possible go around the letters without interfering to much with it. Although this made the whole cabling a lot more complex, we thought this was better than having the lines across the letters.

The wall consists of two pars, the front which holds the pixel LED stripes and has the cutouts for the letters to shine through, and the back which creates stability and holds the white led stripes.

The two parts are made of OSB, to give it stability and it’s cheap. With a projector we traced the letters onto the OSB. To maintain size, we included a ruler in the image which we adjusted to real size. We cut out the letters and drilled holes for the cables at each end of every bit of LED strip. After painting, we glued groups of two together and started pre assembling the the pixel LED strips. The final assembly had to be done right on stage with everything built together. After soldering every LED stripe and testing it, we mounted the two parts together with some small blocks to give it some spacing.

To control the pixel LED’s, we use Arena from Resolume which lets me map each strip exactly on the image that would extend from the projector. For the letters, we use one channel per letter which is controlled by our Lighting software.

Material used:
20x OSB 2050x620mm
some wooden beam for construction and stability
Black Paint (dull)
72x 40cm Pixel LED stripes WS2812 (from china)
30m high density 4000k LED stripes
1x Artnet LED pixel controller for 5440pixel
1x 24Ch RGB DMX Decoder (we had already one of them, there are smaller ones available)
4x 150W 5V Power-supply
a lot of cables

What we’ve learned the “hard way”
– be really sure you want this much wiring work, it took us way longer than expected. As you can see it doesn’t look pretty anymore…
– WS2812 is very sensitive to drift in ground voltage, so make sure to connect your 0V as short as possible with a thick wire. Maybe use different LED’s like SK6812.
– have some spare LED’s for replacement.

2 responses to Big Grace

  1. I love the design it looks so cool, what controller did you guys use for the led pixel tape? Our church wants to use led pixel tape but we want to be able to send video to it. Thanks in advance

    • Patrick Höhener August 15, 2019 at 1:04 pm

      We used a 16 Chanel ArtNet to TTL SPI controller. But the real magic happens in the Software that calculates all the dmx values for each pixel. We use Arena from Resolume. In that program we created a fixture for one led strip which then was alligned to match the actual position in the whole frame (See the projected image and the stripes as one image).

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