Great Lighting is About More than Just a Lamp
Lighting can make a space intimate, exciting, spacious, relaxed, or draw attention to a focal point. But your lighting choices also have an impact on how you look in the space, as well as how you feel.
So, before you fall in love with that gorgeous light fixture you just discovered, here are 3 critical things to consider when you select and install your lighting that will make you happier with your purchase and the overall look of your space.
Where your light source is has a huge impact on how you look. Cinematographer Stephan Pehrsson says, “I’m always aware of lighting that complements a person, what makes you look nice, and also what makes someone look unattractive, what makes you look like a bad guy.”
If you’re in a poorly lit room, says Pehrsson, “It doesn’t matter if you’re a supermodel. In cruel lighting, you will look like the villain in a classic horror flick — dark circles under your eyes, creases in your brow, wrinkles tracing around your mouth, sagging cheeks and moonscape complexion.”
Here’s the rub - modern interior design incorporates lots of recessed and overhead lighting. This gives spaces a clean, minimalist look. But, if there are no other lights to balance out the lighting, (what lighting designers call light layering), light from above alone casts shadows on your face that enhance wrinkles and imperfections.
Avid selfie takers know this. And it’s no surprise that selfie rings or ring lights have become very popular for people who are on endless zoom calls while working from home, painfully aware of how they look on camera.
This video by a group called Opale – “Sparkles and Wine” is an awesome and simple demonstration of how just the angle of light projecting on you can change your appearance and affect.
In addition to how light makes you look, according to Shannon Wilson on Thrive Global, there are 6 ways lighting can affect us:
Alleviate symptoms of depression
Cause migraines and headaches
Cause drowsiness and fatigue
Therefore, here are two other considerations when it comes to selecting your lighting:
The temperature of light greatly affects the human body. Measured in Kelvin, the higher the temperature, the brighter and “cooler” the light will be. Warm lights make an environment feel more welcoming and relaxing, while cooler lights make it more stimulating - they make us feel more alert, more focused, and can increase productivity levels.
Therefore, you should carefully choose the temperature of your lighting - what you use for your bedroom should not at all be the same as that what you use for your home office.
Hue is defined as a color or shade. Overall, natural light makes you happier, but colors created by artificial light will also evoke emotions and have effects on the body. Seasonal Affective Disorder [SAD] - a form of clinical depression that is prevalent in geographies that are deprived of natural light during winter - is treated with light therapy based on colors.
If you’d like to read more about the psychological impact of color in light, this article from lighting manufacturer TCP gets into detail on the subject and the different emotions each color can evoke.
Bottom line, the impact of proper lighting on you and your family’s wellbeing is significant, so be armed with the information you need to choose your fixtures wisely.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a supermodel. In cruel lighting, you will look like the villain in a classic horror flick — dark circles under your eyes, creases in your brow, wrinkles tracing around your mouth, sagging cheeks and moonscape complexion.