Rainbow Lighting Invests in Astera

A beacon of positive energy and enthusiasm for life and lighting, appropriately named Cape Town based ‘Rainbow Lighting’ was started by freelance gaffer Desmond Gqitekaya in 2020. At the time, he was working mostly on major movies and feature films being shot in South Africa and was lucky enough to also start picking up commercials and music video work through his contacts, for which there was always a demand for thinking quickly and ‘out-of-the-box’ when it came to lighting. This soon led him to Astera.

His first purchase was Astera Helios Tubes in 2022, and this has quickly expanded to also include Astera’s workhorse Titan Tubes, HydraPanels and NYX Bulbs.

He was first inspired to look at the wireless LED brand after seeing other film lighting professionals using them on set and in the studio, and observing how some lighting set ups struggled to make lighting changes quickly and easily which is always a demand, especially on fast turnaround projects where time pressure is a constant challenge.

“The wireless functionality and Astera’s App-based control can make things incredibly fast and adaptable,” he noted, “and they have been a game-changer for my business.”

He thinks that the Astera accessory / fittings packages are brilliantly well thought out to make the kit even more exceptionally handy like diffusers, handles and other basic rigging necessities. He also finds that the lighting fixtures are designed to dovetail perfectly with the DOP choice range of products.

“Whatever the director of photography might want on sight, you can deliver using these lighting products,” he declares, “especially the quality of light and excellent colour mixing, and with the high CRI they are great for close ups just as they are for set dressing and background lighting.” He thinks the ability to run the Astera units wired if desired is another bonus, especially for some scenarios and when the unit is working longer days! “I will be using only Astera going forward.”

The NYX Bulbs he finds “very practical” for providing pleasant soft light in any colour. He notes that whenever Astera is dropping a new product, he will automatically check it out and is now prepared to invest in the brand as a matter of course as he knows it will also be good and there will always be an application.

He’s looking forward to using his latest purchase – a new PlutoFresnel – as soon as it’s delivered by SA distributor, DWR Distribution, one of the country’s leading sales and service companies.

He describes DWR as “Fantastic, very friendly and knowledgeable and so much more than just a service company,” reporting that they also deliver swiftly, which is often important as he needed both the NYX Bulbs and the HydraPanels within 2 weeks of placing the order to go on specific jobs. Often projects are confirmed late in the day as we all know!

Desmond has introduced some of his friends and colleagues to DWR as the service is so good, and he’s also been a great advocate for Astera, with several of his contemporaries investing in lights themselves based on his glowing recommendations.
He started off in the beauty and wilds around Port St. Johns on the Eastern Cape where he initially worked on a documentary. He found the broadcast industry interesting and then jumped straight onto another project and then another and another as things started to snowball, and his aptitude for lighting and illumination shone through.

In 2001, he decided to make the move to the heart of the industry in Cape Town and start a whole new life there … from which he has not looked back! He loves the industry’s family atmosphere, plus the fact that every lighting project is different and challenging offering the chance to learn every day. Moving to Cape Town has opened his eyes to many experiences previously unimaginable.

Rainbow Lighting is Desmond himself at the moment – so he can stay agile and reactive as a business – but for the larger jobs he will train people up to work alongside him for the duration of the project. His Astera kit will go on most of the jobs which has also recently included Japanese Manga series ONE PIECE (project Panda) for which he was Best Boy.

For more info about astera, you can visit Astera Led.com


Crédits - Text by Astera

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