The Art of Coloring The Sky
16 October 2018
Firework displays have become part of the culture of celebration in most nations around the world. They are rarely absent from national, religious and even family celebrations.
Fireworks are made of basic material: gunpowder and a mixture of potassium nitrate that releases oxygen. Sulfur and charcoal are used as fuel to propel the rocket upward and explode it. Light and colors are produced from minerals that explode into tiny pieces. Strontium carbonates produce the red color while sodium salt makes beautiful bright glow, and iron shavings form golden sparks.
In recent decades, fireworks have become a form of art in their own right after being just random displays lacking today's thorough studies and perfection. Engineering and technology play a big role in shaping these displays and how they appear in different forms, synchronize and interplay. Today, firework displays can be held on large scales with the use of split-second digitization.
The selection of a location undergoes a very thorough survey. Before work can begin, organizers need to consider different factors, think about how the available space can be divided and calculate the safe distance for viewers, service stations and flammable surfaces from the action. A great deal of administrative work is needed in order to meet safety regulations. Effort must also be made in selecting a variety of fireworks with different features in terms of formation, propulsion, height and colors.
Fireworks were promoted to a higher level when they stopped being a means for mere entertainment and started carrying humanitarian and artistic undercurrents. Some fireworks make up portraits or sketches of plays with background music or light shows, expressing deep existential concepts and human emotions such as loneliness, anger or joy.
The most salient feature related to fireworks is the accompanying media. There is a great difference between pure firework displays and multimedia displays which might involve firework banners and portraits. Laser also opens wider horizons when used as a means to animate graphics and display the content that tells the whole story. Music also acts as the conductor leading the fireworks, so that the whole show follows the beat of music: the propulsions, the rockets and the fire chandeliers. The whole thing is orchestrated behind the scenes by computers that launch the different components on time.
Recently, daytime fireworks have become more popular. These fireworks are made of materials that were first made for aerial shows. Their popularity is due on the one hand to their beautiful and exhilarating displays, and on the other hand to safety as they produce no explosions and are made of harmless colored powder.
Watching a fireworks display gives viewers unforgettable feelings and an amazement at the contrast between the serious and grave appearance of the launching pads, which look like they are made for a destructive explosion or to plant mines, and the playful and colorful display that is produced in the sky. Viewers are left marveling at how this delicacy, accuracy and perfection can be produced by dangerous and serious tools with skill that tames danger and reconstructs colorful paintings from shrapnel, smoke and sparks.