Illuminating Spaces with the Power of Architectural Lighting Techniques

Architectural lighting serves a practical purpose, creates a mood, or tells a story. Great architectural lighting can do all three. It can be used to illuminate the lines of a modern commercial building or the beautiful features of a craftsman-style home. The 2023 ARCHITECT Light & Architecture Design Awards show how lighting was used at the Dairy at Central Park, New York, and 800 W. Fulton, Chicago, amongst other winning entries.  

We are also becoming more aware of the impact our use of lighting has on bird migration and the natural environment. Energy efficiency is an increasingly important design feature, and architects are using sources of natural light more effectively in homes and commercial buildings. In this article, we discuss what architectural lighting is, why it is important, and which eco-friendly lighting you can use in your home or commercial space. 

What is Architectural Lighting?  

Architectural lighting aims to accentuate certain design elements of a building, whether the interior, exterior, or surrounding landscape. Architectural lighting design and lighting design are separate concepts since one focuses on architecture, while the other looks at function and ergonomics, but architectural design always incorporates both types. Examples of dual use in architectural design include skylights enhancing a home’s entryway and a meeting room with sensors switching lighting off when the area is unused.  

The Importance of Light in Architecture 

Light has a psychological and physiological effect on employees and consumers in commercial spaces, as it does for people in their homes. Small rooms feel larger with a lot of natural light, while buildings look more attractive and feel safer at night with strategically placed lighting. Lights with cool undertones, such as blue, improve focus in an office environment, and warmer light undertones, like peach, are ideal for hotels as they create a feeling of comfort.  

Seth A. Leeb Architecture uses the most suitable architectural lighting in all the designs we do for NJ clients, whether new commercial buildings, custom homes, home additions, or remodeling projects.   

Types of Lighting Explored 

The types of lighting used to highlight architectural features or illuminate spaces depend on their purpose. Strategically placed flood lights (exterior) or uplighting (interior) provide nighttime visibility in commercial or historic buildings while simultaneously highlighting architectural features. Backlighting enhances art or signage, and pendant lights provide focused light over a dining room table, kitchen island or reception counter.

Eco-Friendly Lighting for Homes 

Light represents 20 percent of your home’s electricity bill, according to the New Jersey Clean Energy Program. LED light bulbs are a must for environmentally friendly lighting at home as they are energy efficient, have a lifespan of 50,000 hours or more, and perform well in cold temperatures. They are also available in dimmable models to create the perfect mood in your bedroom or entertainment area.

Do you have beautiful artwork or historical external features you want to illuminate outside your house? Consider solar-powered lighting. It is a sustainable and energy-efficient option.

Natural Lighting Designs for NJ Homes & Businesses 

Architectural lighting designers use natural light to improve well-being, enhance productivity, and create visual comfort. Maximize natural daylight in a design, and you have a sustainable lighting feature that also promotes energy savings. Natural light design features to consider are skylights, an interior courtyard with plants, and floor-to-ceiling windows. A building’s orientation is a major consideration when designing for natural light. It incorporates the sun’s path and prevailing wind directions to minimize heat loss or gain, optimize solar exposure, and ensure a consistent, comfortable indoor environment. 

Seth A. Leeb is an award-winning architect with more than 25 years of experience serving NJ clients with residential and commercial architecture services. Contact us today to discuss how architectural lighting can enhance your home or building. You can also visit our website at: https://leeb-architecture.com/

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