What Do You Need To Consider When Designing a Set

Set design industry has a worldwide popularity. It involves interior designers along with many other professionals. What do you need to consider when designing a set are understanding script, space planning, lighting, material use, and budget.

All these mentioned areas further demand niched expertise to create a flawless set design that is attractive and functional.

This short article will explore what should you consider while designing a set for theater.

So, let’s dive in..

What To Consider When Designing a Set

Set designing is a complex science and art. The process of set design involves artists, designers, and many other technical professionals.

For an interior designer prior to set designing demands a few steps to consider very carefully.

Lets explore about these very important steps in the process to design a flawless set.

Understanding Script

Script is an important document set designers need to understand. It gives them the information about the scenes.

You should read and analyze the script to have a better visualization about how that scene would look in an ambience.

A good analysis of script will also give you a clear idea of technicalities that will play their role in every scene as per visualization.

Build a Design Concept

Once you understand script in detail next would be to build a concept based on style and theme that supports the script.

At this stage you will make lot of thumbnail drawings to study every shot in a particular scene.

The sketches will show overall ambience camera angle, furniture, accessories, lighting to props and space plan or the clear movement area for the actors.

Planning Space

Space planning is one of the crucial steps in designing a set. A lot of floor plans are developed to see how the set space will be utilized.

Space plan defines the furniture layout on the set floor, how much area props and other accessories will cover.

Set space planning also makes sure the movement area of actors in a particular scene is tackled for optimum performance.

You need to make sure your planning of space resonates with the script and scene requirements.

Understanding of Materials

Designers either product or interior must have a good understanding of materials as this can make a huge difference.

Materials can help in creating an attractive ambience or the final look of the scene.

The economical selections of alternative materials can considerably lower the operational cost of set design.


Lighting plays a very dramatic role in set design and drama overall. Light and shadows enhance not only the movement of actors, their expressions, but also the created environments.

There are many types of lights that can serve the purpose in a scene. You should know when designing a set about qualities of light.

These qualities are intensity, form, color, direction and movement. All of them are equally important for successful ambience and it’s appreciation.

Budget and Expenses

Budget and expenses matter in all fields including set design.

You can make an economical budget for your set design clients, if you pay attention to the things you should know when designing set as mentioned above.

A good understanding of materials, props, and space plan can make a good difference in creating environment within a certain budget.

Final Words

If you are an interior or a product designers the above mentioned things are just the basics you should know when you design a set.

There are many technicalities you should be aware of and not just sketching out the scene thumbnails on paper.

Set design has become advanced to a level that your educational and professional expertise are challenged by high expectations of clients.

Set designers need to be well aware of the latest materials, digital and modern mechanical equipments that could assist them in making a flawless, and impactful set design.

Hopefully the above mentioned factors can give you a basic idea of what you should consider when designing a set.

Written by: Adil Masood Qazi