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Designing The Forrest: ATOMIC

Electronic music, jam bands, art, elephants, crazy costumes and more¦youll find all this at Electric Forest Festival.

ATOMIC, a creative company providing design and production services, set construction and rental solutions for the live event industry, has designed and built multiple stages for the Electric Forest Festival over the past four years. Tom McPhillips, founder of ATOMIC and seasoned designer, draws inspiration from all over, designing looks from steampunk to art deco to Victorian times for the unique Festival stages.  

The Double JJ Ranch in Michigan transforms each year to house the festival among open fields and a whimsical forest. The Electric Forest Festival producers, artists, festival goers and music all demand creative stage designs and raise the bar each year. Tom McPhillips and team redesigned the Sherwood Court stage this year, centering the design around the existing elephant motif. McPhillips wanted a culturally eclectic look for the stage including elements from India, Tibet and Baroque and Victorian time periods. The stage featured printed graphics and scenic paint finishes from the Set Construction team. 

The Forest Stage was also redesigned and featured marble faux finishes from the Scenic Paint Department. The design boasted a Poseidon on the top of the stage and vines created by ATOMICs Soft Goods team wrapped around the faux finished columns. Electric Forest Festival is the biggest job each year for ATOMICs Scenic Paint Department allowing them to show off their finishing skills and fine arts background. Each stage is a mashup of historic styles and cultural art and allows for so much creativity in the design and build process. 

In 2015, McPhillips worked closely with Executive Producer Jeremy Stein, to conceptualize and design the Jubilee stage and Hangar stage. Both stages, which were enormous tented areas for festival goers, returned to the festival this summer. The Jubilee stage, housed under a six tower pink and blue tent, was a 30s art deco themed space. From the marquee light bulbs in the retro outdoor sign to the PVC balloons augmented with gold ribbon fringe, this stage was 30s all the way. McPhillips designed the Jubilee stage to look as wide as possible, utilizing ATOMICs FASTwall rental product line, the design fit to the contour of the tent and the rental products allowed for adaptability on site. The aesthetic was complete with printed Gatsby-esque scrims that were used to frame the stage.

From Electric Forest to the MTV VMAs to League of Legends World Championship, ATOMICs team creates, designs and builds experiences. ATOMIC is stoked to sponsor XLIVE this year! Look for ATOMICs rental solutions products on the main stage, in the expo hall and in the breakout rooms. See you in Vegas!

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