There’s more to creating eye-pleasing lighting in your home than simply screwing light bulbs into sockets and flipping a wall switch. It requires the right types of bulbs positioned appropriately, and controlled by a smart lighting system to achieve the best results. Here, professional lighting designer, Kevin Mikelonis, of Pasolumination, Paso Robles, Calif., shares his lighting design tips. Naturally, hiring a professional lighting designer can assure you that the lighting in your home is its most functional and beautiful, but you may be able to apply a few of these techniques on your own.
Hide the source: — great lighting is not seen. Use architectural coves, trays, and niches specifically to hide light sources and remove glare.
Natural light: — consider the sun’s effect in rooms throughout the day and season. Include fabric window treatments to filter light, invoke color, and remove reflection in rooms.
Add shadow: — the space between lighted areas and behind surfaces adds depth to rooms. Increase spacing between recess lights in hallways and illuminate free-standing elements from only one direction.
What to light: — surfaces reflect light within space. Focus on architectural elements, decorative fixtures, art, furnishings, foliage, and work areas. Look for hidden spaces under cabinets and stairs which may be cut-off from direct light to in-fill.
Asymmetric patterns: — once furnished, rooms are rarely symmetrical in their layout and flow, so place lighting for a finished room, not an empty room.
Indirect light: — is most like the natural light experienced with daylight. Emphasize the light on ceilings and walls rather than lighting the floors.
Luminaire types: — select the right light for the application. With LED lighting, options for dimming, color, color rendering, color temperature, and optics increase the need to make the right choice in a luminaire.
Elegance: — transition rooms from dark to light upon entry. Raise up accent lights first, ambient lights after. Create movement by altering window treatment positions or turning on water fountains.
Controls: — incorporate advanced controls for managing multiple lighting layers, luminaire types, room scenes, and realizing greater energy efficiency. Within a whole home or a single room, each of these lighting elements will provide more value when the effects can be swiftly activated.
Program: — choose a professional who is experienced in using light and programming controls to put elegance, drama, convenience, and safety into your home with light. There is a whole world beyond basic on and off.