Monthly Archives: September 2016

The Magical Art of Lighting Design

ARA_11_Editorial for Eblast2

There is one fundamental fact about lighting: Where there is no light, there is no beauty. -Billy Baldwin, Ruby Ross Wood

Light is that magical ingredient that defines a space. Like an artists’ canvas, light is layered to create stunning visual environments for people to live, work, play, learn, shop, and communicate in. It is an essential tool in our lives. Lighting quality is defined by achieving a perfect balance among human needs, architectural designs, and energy efficiency.

“The lighting of it affects everything light falls upon: how you see what you see, how you feel about it, and how you hear what you are hearing.” – Jean Rosenthal.

The proper application of lighting improves satisfaction and performance, draws attention, influences social interaction, fosters positive mood, beautifies space, facilitates communication, promotes safety and security, and increases visual comfort. Poor lighting can have opposite effects including headaches, depression, glare, distraction and lower productivity. Improper lighting can also produce unsafe conditions by failing to illuminate hazards such as curbs, stair edges, even labels on cleaning products.

Design is defined by light and shade, and appropriate lighting is enormously important. -Albert Hadley, The Story of America’s Preeminent Interior Designer

Light and shadow are tools that lighting designers use to make faces, objects, and spaces more visible and more attractive. Patterns of light and the appearance of lighting equipment itself convey vital information to people such as scale and function while emphasizing points of interest such as artwork.

Visible white light is comprised of colors. The spectral composition of a light source, whether it is “cool” or “neutral” or “warm” in color appearance, can affect how we perceive the colors of faces, objects and surfaces. Qualified lighting designers are trained to choose the best light spectrum for the space to achieve the best quality of light.

Lighting is everything. It creates atmosphere, drama, and intrigue in a room.” – Martyn Lawrence Bullard

Lighting designers are a tremendous resource of innovative, practical, and economically viable lighting solutions. They know how to make the best use of the subtle and powerful medium of light, creating effects that can be changed to match the mood of the space.   Qualified lighting designers understand codes, standards, safety and security issues to ensure the proper application of light. Light is a technically difficult yet spectacular medium that requires mastery of varied and continually evolving disciplines. A lighting designer integrates the arts, sciences, and business of illumination design and application. Light is intangible and invisible until it strikes an object or surface. Controlling this medium gives the lighting “artist” the ability to create scale, dynamics, and mood.

Layers of light, like a beautiful painting, adds depth and dimension to any space or architectural element. – Robert Singer

Lighting design has become a creative extension of architectural design, improving visibility and complementing form, concept and color. Experience and talent create patterns of illumination that positively reinforce overall project goals. Brilliant and creative light design adds value to any architectural project.

“Light is how we see. Lighting is how we see the world and each other.” – IALD

Energy efficiency and lighting quality should go hand-in-hand when shaping effective energy policy. Lighting consumes about 20% of the electric energy in buildings, therefore it is imperative to address the value light brings us while also addressing energy issues. The installation, maintenance, and operation need to be environmentally friendly. The IALD has joined with other lighting organizations around the world to urge governments to adopt energy policies that recognize the importance of the proper application of lighting and its impact on human well-being and commerce. Energy-efficient lighting should be achieved in a manner that does not compromise lighting’s primary intent to serve human needs in a world in which most information is gathered through the eye.

We eat light, drink it in through our skins. With a little more exposure to light, you feel part of things physically. I like feeling the power of light and space physically because then you can order it materially. Seeing is a very sensuous act–there’s a sweet deliciousness to feeling yourself see something. -James Turrell

Benefits of Hiring an IALD Lighting Designer

Benefits of Hiring an IALD Lighting Specialist

Architects, interior designers, electrical engineers, builders, and owners are among the many who are embracing professional lighting designers to augment their projects. They are finding extensive value in an independent lighting design professional. Light is a technically difficult, yet intangible medium, that requires mastery of varied and continually evolving disciplines. A lighting design specialist integrates the arts, sciences, and business of illumination design, and implementation. An owner or project designer may be unaware of the advantages an independent lighting consultant can bring to today’s design and construction processes. Professional lighting designers bring solid, technical acumen and sensitive design technique to architectural and landscape projects. The invaluable services they provide can only enhance the success of a project.

Technology is developing at light speed.

Knowledge of physics, optics, electricity, ergonomics, business, codes, environmental issues, construction, vision and the art of design, are all essential to creating great lighting solutions. Lighting specialists are continually educated on the latest, most cost-effective technologies. Lighting designers are trained to make spaces both functional and beautiful. This knowledge allows foresight in evaluating both requirements and restrictions of a project. A skilled lighting designer can help develop and integrate your list of requirements within the framework of the project and with the latest technologies.

A lighting designer can guide you through an entire project as your advocate. 

A qualified lighting designer will be able to assist with every aspect of a project from schematic design development, construction documents, control system, natural light control, on-site services, construction administration, design review board submittals, to final focus and programing. Designers are able to ensure the project runs smoothly during each stage, avoiding any disruptive and costly surprises.

Lighting designers can reduce the project construction and/or operations costs. 

A designer will work with the owner and contractors to achieve budget objectives through value engineering without sacrificing design intent. Reducing the owner’s operations costs may be a pivotal part of the design decisions, and these measures often benefit the project aesthetically and practically. Lifecycle cost analysis compares the return on initial investment of different techniques or technologies. For example, LED Technology provides maintenance free lighting for the lifetime of the home. Experience and knowledge of working within a budget can seamlessly support overall project goals.

Using a qualified independent professional lighting specialist will add value and prestige to your next project. 

The International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD) was established in 1969 to recognize independent lighting design professionals and promote lighting excellence. Professional membership is limited to experienced designers and is contingent on peer-review of an applicant’s portfolio. Members must abide by rules of ethics. IALD members have worked on many of the world’s most recognized structures. Robert Singer is a proud IALD member since 1995.