When designing spaces, designers are tasked to think in terms of function, aesthetics, and sustainability before settling for a type of lighting. Why is this so?
In interior design and architecture, lighting is a foundational aspect that determines how the user interacts with other elements in the space.
No matter how you look at it, lighting is a necessity for shaping how an audience experiences architecture and understands it.
As an energy form that makes a difference between being able to see structures and décor, without light, we can’t really appreciate the designs that surround us.
The type of lighting used in a space can determine the user’s emotional resonance with it.
The people who occupy a certain space will frame memories, mental images, and perspectives based on the lighting.
After all, light is what helps architecture achieve its real purpose by drawing attention to colors, textures, and materials.
When the audience associates certain feelings, emotions, and memories with a space, they increase its intrinsic value.
In every project, designers need to strike an equilibrium point between architecture and lighting. To do this, they focus on architectural lighting’s three key aspects, practical function, aesthetic, and energy efficiency.
For starters, you need to look at whether the lighting fulfills its most basic function, to help people feel safe, navigate through a space, and identify objects around them.
Moving on, focusing on the aesthetic aspect ensures a positive emotional impact on occupants. This is crucial for showrooms and retail locations, where the sell ability of products on display depends on how consumers view them. The interior lighting needs to keep them captivated and enhance the features of the product.
Lastly, the aspect of energy efficiency emphasizes on the sustainability factor of the lighting used in a space. It’s gaining more importance in an age when industries are being pushed to adopt greener methods for creating structures and products as a way to reduce our environmental impact.
It may be difficult to achieve a captivating lighting system, but it’s even more of a challenge to ensure that it’s energy-efficient at the same time. New design theories suggest that one of the ways to accomplish greater efficiency is to ensure minimum energy wastage between the input and output i.e. most of the light reaches its target. As for implementation, LEDs are the best way to go forward.
At the same time, I think that optimizing lighting for sustainability will require more than just energy-efficient fixtures. We need to design spaces strategically so they make the most out of natural light i.e. the sun. In this scenario, smart options will have to be introduced to public spaces that require sufficient lighting at all times, such as schools and hospitals.
With this approach, low (natural) lighting levels will activate fixtures so they’re only operational when needed. This reduces energy consumption and dependence on artificial lighting. Of course, we’ll need to develop technology such as advanced light sensors so they’re economically viable solutions, but we’re on the forefront of making big changes in the industry.
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