Lighting is a potent design element, possessing the power to dramatically transform a trade show exhibit or an event from mundane to mesmerizing. Skillfully deployed lighting can accentuate key elements, create moods, and draw the attention of the attendees. Here are ways to use lighting as a design tool in your trade show display:


This is the most direct way to draw attention. If you have a specific product that you want to be the focal point, using a spotlight can be a useful tool.


This technique involves placing lights behind an object or display to create a silhouette effect. It is especially effective in backlit graphics. This type of lighting can add depth and make your graphics stand out.


Enhance the visual impact and brand visibility at your event with backlit lightboxes. These structures typically consist of an illuminated frame that showcases graphics, logos, or promotional messages with vibrant and vivid lighting. This style of signage gives you dynamic, attention-grabbing images with lively colors and easy-to-read text. They are available in multiple size options and types of display (floor-standing, hung from overhead rigging, attached to exhibit walls). Fully customizable, lightboxes use LED bulbs, which increases the longevity of this type of lighting for your event.

Ambient Lighting:

Set the mood of your booth with ambient lighting. Soft, warm lighting can create a welcoming, intimate environment, whereas bright, cool lighting can create an energetic, futuristic vibe.

Interactive Lighting:

Engage your visitors by using lights that respond to motion or touch. For instance, a display board that lights up wherever a visitor touches can make the interaction dynamic and memorable.

Truss Lights:

Truss structures provide and important functional role by providing a sturdy framework for a trade show exhibit. Why not put them to work to enhance your aesthetic through lighting as well? When paired with strategic lighting, truss structures come to life, accentuating key features and creating a visually appealing atmosphere. Well-placed truss lighting not only enhances the aesthetics of the exhibit but also directs attention to specific areas, effectively emphasizing products or promotional displays.

Color Theory:

Different colors evoke different emotions. Red might convey urgency or passion, while green evokes feelings of tranquility or growth. By altering the colors of your lights, you can control the subconscious perceptions of your brand. A health-focused brand might use green to emphasize wellness, while a high-energy startup might employ red to communicate their dynamism.

Dynamic Lighting:

Movement grabs attention. Consider using rotating lights, pulsing effects, or changing color patterns. A company selling dance software, for example, might use dynamic lights synced to music, encapsulating the rhythm and movement of dance.

Gobo Projectors:

These devices project custom shapes or logos onto surfaces. Picture your company logo projected on the floor, guiding visitors straight to your booth. Incorporating projection mapping with lighting effects is a creative way to create a dynamic and immersive display.

While it has a functional purpose, lighting can be so much more in your trade show booth or event design. Use it to elevate your events from ordinary to extraordinary. By employing these lighting techniques, you can create a memorable exhibit that not only captures the attention of attendees but leaves a lasting impression of your brand. So, when planning your next exhibit, remember that lighting is not just about visibility; it’s a design asset waiting to shine.