Once you’ve opened your Plot for the first time, all you’ll see is a grid. Using the + button next to Objects, you can open the Inventory add a variety of gear to your setup. The equipment is divided into a number of categories, as well as Favorites and Recent (in the bottom toolbar).
You can search for the object you’d like to find in the search bar. Searching in the categories list will display object types; searching within a specific category will display all variants of the objects in that category.
The most common object you’ll use is probably a Unit, or light. These include HMI, Fluorescent, Tungsten, and several other categories, each containing dozens of different types of Units. When you navigate to the Unit of your choice, you’ll have several options in the table:
Nickname: The blue text is the automatically generated nickname, which will display on the Plot layout. You can change this to whatever you like, at any time.
Model: Some objects have different variants, like Fresnels or PARs.
Mount: Some objects can be mounted in different orientations, like horizontal or vertical Kinos.
Wattage: Some Units have different possible bulb options, like 575w or 750w Source Fours.
Recommended Grip: Each object can have Grip gear tagged into it, if it requires a certain type of rig. You can check or uncheck the recommended gear to be created along with your object, and you can always remove them or add more later.
In the bottom toolbar:
+ Add to Plot/Add to Object: This will create an object with the properties and Grip gear you chose, and place it in the middle of your screen. Some objects, like Grip and Gel, cannot be added to the Plot as a standalone object; they must be tagged onto other objects. When an object is selected on the Plot, this button will be enabled.
Swap Object: If an object is selected and matches the class of the new object, you can swap them. All properties and relationships will be transferred over to the new object.
☆ Add to Favorites: Tapping the star adds the object type to your Favorites, which is a collection you make of your most-used objects.
Once you’ve added a single object to the Plot, you’ll see control buttons. These four actions provide the basic functionality of the object.
Dragging the crosshairs allows you to aim your Unit, and releasing your touch sets that focus. If you focus the Unit on an empty area of the Plot, you are simply setting a rotation for the Unit; however, if you focus the Unit on another object, you will see a circle pop up around it. This means your Unit is now “targeting” that object. Wherever the object moves, your Unit will aim at it, and wherever you move your Unit, it will rotate to stay focused on its target.
When you target an object, LD will prompt you to select a “role” for the targeting unit. This is optional, but can appear in a pointer and can be helpful for identifying which Unit does what. (You can always change it later in the detail table.)
Note: You can also rotate an object by selecting it and performing a rotation gesture anywhere in the workspace. This will negate any Targeting a Unit is doing.
Create an exact copy of an object; same type, nickname, notes, target (for Units), and will belong to the same Groups.
When you tap the X, you’ll have the option of Deleting the object (which removes it from the Plot AND from the Truck), or just sending it to the Truck (which will remove it from the Plot but not change the number in the Truck).
Note: If you do not have the option of Deleting, it means that another Plot in your Show requires as many of those objects as you’re currently using.)
You can assign DMX values to Units to display on the Plot as a reference. You can customize the display of each Unit’s DMX position in the detail table, and change all DMX text opacity in the Plot’s Display Settings. If you switch to DMX edit mode and select a Unit, you’ll see two buttons at the bottom of your screen:
The circular button shows the Unit’s Channel. This can be any number between 1 and 2048. (Channel 0 is a null assignment, which will result in no Channel being displayed on your Plot.) If you change the Unit’s Channel, and its Address was the same as the Channel, the Address will automatically be changed with it (to preserve the 1:1 patch). Also note that if the Channel and Address are the same, only the Channel will be displayed on the Plot.
The square button shows the Unit’s Address, which should correspond to the actual DMX address on the fixture or dimmer. This can be set between 1 and 512, in DMX universes 1 through 4. (Address 0 will result in no display on the Plot.)
Another type of object you can add to your Plot is a Rail, which is a stretchable object on which to rig other objects; examples include truss, dolly track, and speed rail. You can add a Rail just like you would a Unit, but once they’re on the Plot, things are a little different. You can control a Rail in these ways:
Use a pinch gesture to change the length of the Rail. The Rail will set to any size, but if you have Snap enabled, or if you are resizing Truss or Dolly Track, it will only resize to even-numbered units of measurement.
Use a rotation gesture to orient the Rail to the angle you like. This gesture can be over the Rail, but it can also be in any open area of the workspace, to make things a bit easier. The angle is displayed in the detail table. If Snap is enabled, the Rail will rotate in 15° increments.
By dragging either end of the Rail, you can simultaneously change its length and rotate it. If Snap is enabled, the Rail will resize in increments and rotate to every 15°, but if it is disabled, it will move freely.
A Rail moves and deletes just like a Unit. However, Rails are meant to have Units rigged onto them. To rig an object, just enable Snap and drag the Unit over the Rail; once it gets within a certain distance, it will snap onto the Rail and move only along its length. Some Rails have several different rails to rig onto; the rigged object will use the closest.
To de-rig the Unit, drag it off the Rail. When the Rail is moved, its rigged Units’ targeting properties work just the same; Units that are targeting them will still track their movements, and rigged Units will still track their targets. Units that are not targeting anything will maintain their rotation relative to the Rail, as if they were really attached.
If you make a Rail shorter and there are object rigged near the ends, these Units will be moved in towards the center of the Rail, as if caught and dragged by the ends. If you delete a Rail, all of its rigged objects remain on the Plot in the same positions, no longer rigged.
Like a Unit, you can make an identical copy of a Rail on your Plot, but copying a Rail will also copy all of its rigged Units. This can be an easy way to make rigs like Par Bars; just make one, and copy it a number of times.
A third major type of object is the Lift, which is like a Unit in many ways, but has no electrical, DMX, or targeting properties. Examples include dollies, aerial lifts, and furniture. You can rig objects to preset points on a Lift, or anywhere else over it. Its controls are identical to the Unit, just without the focus crosshairs.
Gels can be added to the Plot or to any Unit on the Plot. You can manipulate them like a Unit or Lift except that they do not show rotation; their view is a circle, and their text will always obey text orientation settings. You can change text position, and where the Gel is placed relative to its Unit. You can also choose to “float” the Gel, which will keep it the same size on your screen, regardless of how you zoom the workspace.
A Gel can also be a gobo, by adding an image from your device Photos. Select the Gobo option in the Gels & Diffusion category to pick your image.
To attach a Gel to a Unit, just drag it over the Unit with Snap enabled. The Gel will move to its proper place based on the Unit’s display preferences, and also be added to any Groups the Unit is a part of.
You can duplicate a Gel onto another unit by opening the Objects table and dragging a Gel’s colored + button over another Unit.
An existing Gel will suggest similar Gels in its detail table; just use the picker to change to a different Gel, or select “Custom” to make a custom Gel based on the current color of the Gel.
These boxes display “header” and “body” text, which you can change at any time. You can use the crosshairs to make the note display pointers to any objects on the Plot, and can also set two properties:
When on, the Note will automatically resize itself to display all of its body text. When off, you can resize it yourself.
When on, the Note will always appear the same size in the workspace, regardless of how zoomed in you are. It will also rotate itself to stay oriented upright on your device
Note: If a Note has rotation values, they are not lost if Floating is enabled; disabling Floating will return the Note to its previous rotation. However, size and position values are changed when you enable Fit Text.
Create and arrange Shape objects to set a background for your Plot. You can set the overall opacity of your Floor Plan in the Display Settings table.
You can create Shapes of the following types:
Square: A basic rectangle with a single border.
Circle: A circle when it’s perfectly proportional, which stretches to a pill shape when it’s not.
Line: Single line, which has the ability to snap its ends to the edges of some other Shapes.
Door: This door will snap to the border of a Square, Circle, or a Line.
Window: This window will also snap to the border of a Square, Circle, or a Line.
Stairs: A basic square that draws steps inside its borders.
Distance: Brackets that define any length on the Plot.
Text: Editable text that can be resized by stretching. Tap and hold on the text to bring up the keyboard.
Image: You can add any image from your Photos, and move and resize them. This can be a way to add one single floor plan image, or a number of custom objects. These images will keep their original aspect ratio as you resize them.
When you create a new Shape, it will start with the default stroke and fill colors unless you currently have another Shape selected (in which case it will copy the stroke and fill of the selected Shape).
All of these Shapes can be resized by dragging the circular handles on the edges and corners, and rotated the same way as a Rail: with a two-finger rotating gesture on the shape or in an open area of the Plot. If Snap is enabled, size will snap to every half-grid unit and rotation will snap to every 15°.
When selected (tapped, dragged, or resized), each Shape will display its size and control handles, and the bottom right will show its controls:
Switch Hinge: (Door only) Cycle through the four combinations of hinge side and swing direction.
Fill Color: (Fillable Shapes only) Open the Color Picker.
Stroke Color: Open the Color Picker, which will include an increment/decrement control for stroke thickness.
Replicate: Same as other objects.
Delete: Remove the Shape from your Plot. (Shapes cannot be added to the Truck.)
You can also see a list of all your Shapes the same way you can see a list of all Plot objects. It allows you to modify them in the same way, set their layering order, and navigate through their relationships to each other.
A Null Object (found in the Notation category) is technically a Unit, but can be used as a focus point for other Units (say, rigged on a Rail), with the added benefit that you can choose to automatically hide it when rendering the Plot. To set this preference, go to the Display Settings and turn “Render Null Objects” on or off (it is off by default). You can also use it as a placeholder object to be chosen later, although there are several other choices in the Notation category for that purpose that will remain visible when rendered: a generic Light, for example, or a number of geometric shapes, all of which behave like any other Unit.