Emmanuel (Manny) Sitole is based in Johannesburg
South Africa - Gripelectric Worx, the company of Emmanuel (Manny) Sitole, is based in Johannesburg, South Africa, and owns some specialist lighting kit, which is primarily used on Manny’s own projects.
Most recently, it purchased eight of Astera’s award-winning PixelBricks from South African distributor DWR, which were the first in the country.
He first heard about the PixelBrick via the ICLS (International Cinema Lighting Society) a global group of gaffers, rigging gaffers, and console programmers dedicated to expanding the field of cinematic lighting. The organisation frequently informs members about new and emerging technologies.
Manny also already owned a set of Astera’s Titan and Helios Tubes which are constantly in use, so he was already familiar with the brand, the quality and functionality of the Titan LED engine and the excellent overall engineering and handiness. He had also been among the first in South Africa to own these two products.
Initially he had been considering purchasing Astera AX3 LightDrops as he especially liked the magnetic fastening. He then saw the PixelBricks, which feature Astera’s robust and high-quality Titan engine and decided this should be his next Astera investment.
“I love the fact you can clamp them together and create different shapes,” he states, “they are perfect for lighting action, environmental scenes like clubs and other scenarios needing some ‘live’ elements of lighting. You can just pull a PixelBrick out of a case and deploy it anywhere - on a desk, in a roof, on the floor, in a fridge, etc., and it will look like part of a set.”
He adds that they can be incorporated swiftly and easily virtually anywhere and be used for colour changing and a range of great effects all of which look cool on camera.
PixelBrick has been designed for use on anything from concerts and events to a range of filming and broadcast applications. It can also be utilised as a compact, lightweight uplighter or hung as a universal light source. Its IP65 rating is rain and damp resistant and multiple PixelBricks can be joined together to create all sorts of funky shapes and combinations.
He frequently uses the AsteraApp for controlling the PixelBricks, but also likes the option to run the fixtures via DMX off a standard lighting console.
The Gripelectric Worx PixelBricks went straight out on a Netflix series that Manny was working on for two months which involved several location shoots.

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