2021 Class Descriptions

Adobe Photoshop for Dummies

Photoshop is an industry proven leader in photo manipulation and graphic art creation. Want to put a baby shark in Ed Smith's front yard? Want to lose 15 pounds fast? No problem! In this class, we will cover file types, layout and panels of Photoshop, how to import and export different formats, working with layers, transformations, selections, and working with transparency. Time permitting, we will dive into some of the more advanced features like vector tools, blending modes, and filters. Join us to learn how to place Bernie Mittens on the deck of Ever Given!

xLights Controller Integration: Pros and Cons of Different Controllers in xLights and How to Get the Most Out of Your Controller

All controllers have different capabilities, and this dictates what and how xLights can configure them. Not all support mid-string null pixels, multiple pixel protocols, multiple color orders, split universes. We will go over the most popular controllers and compare the advantages and disadvantages of each in xLights. We will also demo how to upload to these controllers and explain how the settings in xLights map to the controller webpage.

Tips From Don: Setting Up Your Show Folders and Files

File Management, I will discuss on why this is important and ideas on how to setup the files on your PC.

3D Printing and How to Design Parts for Your Display

Got a 3D printer and not sure how to design your own part or find what you need? This class will help solve those nagging questions regarding 3D printing.

Networking Basics 101

Want to know how to get your show actually talking from point A to Point B? Well come learn an entire wealth of knowledge on how show networking can be easy, simple and take headaches away during show time. We will dive into running one network, a separate show network, and even how to run both but physically separated.

Integrating TVs into Your Display

Ways to add additional video capabilities to your display utilizing cheap and common TVs. TVs can display independent video or be part of your sequences.

Drones, Drones, Drones

Want to make the most of your holiday lighting video? This class will answer those drone questions you have been meaning to ask.

LED Strings: How They Work, How They're Made, How They Fail, and How to Fix Them - Part 1 & 2

LED Strings: How they work, how they're made, how they fail, and how to fix them.

First parts are all about LEDs, different styles, electrical characteristics, semi-technical info. Last part is how to troubleshoot and repair holiday LED strings from big box stores including what type(s) of replacement LEDs to order.

Note: This is NOT about pixels!

Audacity Mini-Master Class

This class will walk you through Audacity from installation to editing your own audio for your display.

Video Creation and Editing Using Free Software

This class will walk you through using FREE software to create and edit videos for your display.

Using a Projector in Your Display

Adding an Outdoor Projector: By a Beginner for a Beginner

This is a beginner's guide on how to use a projector to add video to your show. It includes a brief discussion on the equipment needed, building a weather resistant enclosure, using FPP to control, and xLights to display the video within your sequence.

Promoting and Marketing Your Display

You've spent all year building your props, sequencing your songs and convincing your partner that your latest pixel order is your last for the year but when it comes time for a switch-on, those are much better if people know about it. We will talk through some things to do and things NOT to do to get a little press or local attention!

Dealing with the Media and Charities

How to talk to the media to get coverage and more traffic. But be prepared what you wish for?? Ie shutdown part. Charity is helping with traffic control and getting donations etc.

Importing Sequences from Others into Your Display

Beginner intro to mapping sequences from vendors as well as tips for to correct issues as well as things I have learned along the way to help make mapping easier.

Null Pixels in xLights

Null Pixels in xLights - This will cover what a null pixel is, the difference between a null pixel and an amp, and different ways to account for null pixels in xLights so that they can be accounted for with any controller type.

How to Make Your Display Not Suck / How to Keep Your Neighbors Happy

We will explore though examples and discussion how to evade and mitigate common pitfalls encountered by successful light displays.

Stupid, Easy xLights Sequencing for Beginners: Part 1

Presenting xLights sequencing basics so people can do their good sequencing without getting bogged down in advanced features. Using the provided tutorial, we will take a song all the way through sequencing step-by-step. Part 1 finishes with timings.

Stupid, Easy xLights Sequencing for Beginners: Part 2

In part 2 we continue sequencing in xLights and set the lights to music with lighting effects and deliver a completed sequence. In the process we introduce people to key concepts needed for creating a good sequence.

Mega Trees: How Guy Wires Help

This will cover some of the basic reasons behind how guy wires can help your mega tree, and why I recommend their use.

Customizing Singing Props for EZ Import

Tweaking props with face definitions and colors to allow you to import sequences easily to your singing props without much headache.

Light-O-Rama Superstar: Auto Singing Faces

Learn how to get voice-only mp3s, make faces as .sup files for Superstar, use different faces for each sequence, and how to make your characters blink.

Intro to Layering

We will simplify the use of basic effects layering using xLights. Feel free to follow along on your own computers as we build some fun effects.

Light-O-Rama Superstar: Preview Building for Superstar Props

Learn how to customize your LOR Preview specifically to make it work well with SuperStar.

Sequencing 101

Sequencing 101 is intended for the beginning sequencer who has little to no experience. Instruction will walk you through laying out the beginnings of a sequence, picking a theme and teach basic effect use. When completed, the student should have a basic understanding of sequencing in xLights.

Sequencing 201

This is a medium level sequencing course that will expose the student to some of the more advanced sequence effects and also build on topics from other courses. Although designed to be stand alone, the course will review some of the more advanced effects and additional material like value curves, basic layering, etc.

Sequencing for High-Density Props

In this class we will explore fun and easy ways to bring your HD props to life. If you can create effects for your house outlines, then you can create wonderful effects for your High-Density props. We will also apply lessons from the Intro to Layering class as a bonus!

Light-O-Rama Superstar: Auto-Sequencer for Traditional Lights

Learn how to use the Auto Sequence feature to create sequences for your display, and see the new "morphasize" feature in action, which allows you to adapt Superstar CCR Tree sequences to the rest of your lights.

Advanced Tips and Tricks from a Sequencing Junkie: Part 1

Have you ever looked at a sequence and thought, "I wish I could do that!" Well, you can if you attend this session. Learn advanced tips and trick on set up, alternate wave forms, timing marks, lyric tracks, sub-models, model render and export, value curves, naming color palettes and the VU meter effect.

Advanced Tips and Tricks from a Sequencing Junkie: Part 2

Continuation from Part 1. Learn advanced tips and trick on set up, alternate wave forms, timing marks, lyric tracks, sub-models, model render and export, value curves, naming color palettes and the VU meter effect.

Hanson Electronics

Quick overview of the boards Hanson Electronics makes followed by a more detailed description of the operation of a number of them and how they are configured in xLights and FPP.

Remote Falcon: Controlling Your Show from the Web

Remote Falcon is a fully customizable online application that allows your light show viewers to request and view sequences.

FPP Scheduler

FPP Scheduler- How to use FPP Scheduler to have you show play how and when you want.

FPP Installation and Configuration Walk Through

A step-by-step tutorial on installing and configuring you FPP device.

Advanced Thermal Management

Are you worried about your enclosures getting too hot? Do you have problems with fan noise? Learn how to design in airflow and intelligently control fan speed to manage heat with the MAX31760 and the upcoming Advanced Thermal Management plugin for FPP.

Deeper Dive into Networking

We will build upon the networking basics 101 course and discuss different networking concepts that xLights utilizes. Key topic areas will be protocols (e1.31, DDP, and multisync). Do you need a show network? If you have a show network what are the pros & cons of routing vs proxy.

FPP Overview and Configuration

An overview of FPP and what it has to offer for your show.

FPP 5: A Preview of the Modern New Look

Take a sneak-peek at the updated user interface for the upcoming Falcon Player 5. We will take a look at some of the design updates the dev team has been working on and have a look at what's new. We will also look at how you can update your system if you want to test it out for yourself!

Internet Controlled Christmas Lights

Allow visitors anywhere in the world to see, hear, and control your show! How to build a custom webpage that interfaces with FPP. Sequence voting, stat collecting, accurate video/audio synchronization, and more.

Optimizing Your Audio and FM Transmission

Audio is an essential part of an extreme Christmas light display that often gets overlooked. Learn how to optimize your audio for superior sound, FM radio best practices, recommended products, troubleshooting & tips.

Projection Decorating: Inside Projectors on to Windows

For indoor projectors trained to a window. How to choose the right projector & screen, configure automatic projector power control, and set-up a virtual matrix in xLights & FPP.

A/C or D/C Controlled Props in an xLights / RGB World

Wanna add some old school back into your pixel display? Incans, LEDs, RGB? How about adding a static part to your display? Combining worlds to make a hybrid display in xLights.

LED Panels: An Overview

An introduction to LED Panels. Indoor, Outdoor, P5 vs P10, common controllers and more. We setup a matrix using a ColorLight, Raspberry Pi and Panels and get it configured and running with FPP and xLights.

Moving Heads: Setup and Sequencing

Have you wanted to use moving heads in your display and want to learn how? This class will cover the various types of moving heads, how to set them up, how to waterproof them, and how to sequence them as well.

Singing Faces and Props from Start to Finish

Learn how to successfully go from a prop to a singing faces animation! We will cover proper wiring, touch on custom props, using a matrix as a singing prop, and how to get from audio track to perfectly synced audio!

We will also make an announcement of the future of the Singing Faces project.

Singing Faces Without Software Assistance

Learn the basics of how to sequence five mouth movement singing faces with just the use of a mouse and a headset. No extra outside software required. The methods taught in this class can be applied to both AC and RGB faces and will work with both LOR S4 and S5.

Pixie Setup and Configuration

During this presentation, the students will get a basic understanding of how to setup and configure the Light o Rama Pixie series controller from box to lights. This process can be applied to all Pixie controllers and can be beneficial for a basic understanding of configuring any mfg of non-DMX, E1.31 pixel controllers.

Light-O-Rama Hardware: The Basics

An overview of Hardware from Light-O-Rama; What it is, and how it all works together.

Converting S4 Sequences to S5

Are you ready to upgrade to LOR S5, but have sequences created in older versions? This class will show you how to quickly get those older sequences into S5.

Designing a Dynamic Show Layout

A look at stage design principles and tricks to use for an attractive show layout that lends itself to dynamic sequencing.

Turning Music into Movement

What makes drivers stop to watch your show? Study choreography of Broadway shows to discover techniques for designing movement from your music, and how to create these movements in Sequencer.

Sequencing Using Timing Tracks

Learn how to use Tapper Wizard to build timing tracks for the different elements and layers in the song, for faster, more powerful sequencing using LOR S5.

S5 Grouping & Modeling for Timing Tracks

Creating groups / grid configurations in S5 Sequencer that correspond with the timing tracks to quickly emphasize the details in each sequence.

The Preview Editor & Grouping Pixels

In this session, we will learn ways to group AC & Pixel props inside your display using the S5 Sequencer's grouping methods. We will explore ways to create different effects and optimize your layout for group programming.

The Motion Effect Generator

In this course, we will walk through your options inside the Motion Effects Generator. We will learn how to combine, overlay, and transition motion effects in order to elevate your programming quality.

Input Triggers with Light-O-Rama

A look at the interactive functions within LOR software, interactive LOR hardware, input buttons, and sequencing for interactive elements.

Light-O-Rama Troubleshooting: Common Problems and How to Solve Them

When half the show goes down, what do you check first? Learn techniques to efficiently track down problems, and solutions to common problems.

Light-O-Rama Q&A Session

Come with any and all questions "Light-O-Rama" for this open Q&A session, led by Drew Hickman of Holiday Technologies - Unmute your mic or ask your questions in chat. This session will be moderated by Aubrey Kall.