Lights light up our world. Yet, we know so little about them. There was a time when the world just had gas lamps or candles at most. But given the advances in technology in the last 100 years, the field of lighting design has grown to accommodate a large variety of aesthetical as well as functional lighting solutions that are transformative, explorative and imaginative. Manufacturers and retailers alike have warmed up to the demands of a growing number of people who are looking towards them to help them create space that stands out in good light.
Since Thomas Edison’s carbon-filament incandescent light bulb in 1879, a lot has happened. LEDs, for one, revolutionised the industry. A modern variant of it is the Organic Light Emitting Diode that comprises carbon-based organic materials that don’t generate too much heat, making them the centre piece of the design conversation. Better performing, longer lasting, and cheaper LEDs lights are being worked on using technological advancements.
“Lights can make or break a space, but right now, many can’t even tell the difference between light design and lighting design,” Kuntal Aggarwal, Founder and Design Head, Resaiki Interiors, adding, “The tube light has been used as a primary source of light for eons but now we’re taking false ceiling lights, table, and floor ones, wall accent lights, decorative lights, pendants, track, recessed, even embedded lights. For every space, there is a specific light purpose. Green lighting too has become a big deal with people wanting to be conscious of what they install so you have fabric, bamboo and jute lights.”Additionally, better quality ballasts are being produced to minimise energy wastage. The new variety is compatible with different lamp types and voltages.
So, to get a basic grasp over how to use lighting to enhance a space, you need to know a few things: Understanding the different zones and their requirement is crucial. Positioning is key, and so is layering. For larger spaces, ambient lighting is required, though there are expectations to the rule for those who don’t like spread out light. If you’re bound to use a space for a chore every day, task lighting could get the job done. Kitchen counter lights are practical too for focused areas.
Pendants are great decorative accents. “Architectural lighting is what’s riding the industry on a high tide as these lights enhance the realm of architecture at large. They come built into floors and walls as part of your architectural model and are both functional and stylish,” says Dilraj Bhatia of DBEL Studio.
Because the requirement of every space is different, the lighting also varies from colour temperature, voltage to design, and only when you understand lighting as a concept, can you do justice to a space. “Akshardham is a beautiful example of what a big difference lighting can make to a structure. It has the perfect mix of fixtures emanating from the right sources,” says Aggarwal.
As the world gets smarter with technology, so does lighting. “Smart lights will be a game changer for the future. Automation allows the electric panel to be connected to your mobile devices that can be controlled via Bluetooth. They are energy saving too,” says Bhatia. That’s a bright note to sign off on.
Understanding the different zones and their requirement is crucial. Positioning is key, and so is layering.