We All Need Control

It is time to retire your light switches and dimmers…if you want to get the full benefits of good light back into your life. Get them back? Yes, you and I lost out on natural light’s benefits when our ancestors decided houses were better than tents and offices were better than fields. They moved indoors, […]

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The Gift of Light

A photograph of dried cornstalks against a bright, blue sky

Author’s note: I think of myself as a strange hybrid of wannabe tree-hugging liberal and stumbling follower of Jesus.  From time to time you may see one or more of my values and beliefs come to the surface in my blog, such as in this post.  Yet the only “religion” I will push on this […]

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Light for Doing: A Kitchen

A very brightly lit modern white kitchen labelled "light for feeling" and "light for doing"

Most folks I know never ask me to advise them on lighting their living rooms, but I get called in often to take a look at kitchens.  Modern lifestyles place a much higher emphasis on kitchens than when many of our homes were built, and it makes sense that lighting these spaces has become more […]

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Light for Doing: A Living Room

A living room packed with seating and tables with a ceiling fan light on

CFLS: Ceiling Fan Light Syndrome.  Great for vacuuming the carpet, awful for everything else. Everyone uses their living rooms differently, which means everyone’s idea of great lighting will be different.  In your living or family room you might watch television, read books, play games, relax on the couch, surf the internet on your iPad, knit, snack, […]

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Light for Storytelling

A dining room where the far wall is almost entirely windows looking out onto a small river or creek.

Professional lighting designers use different terms like task, ambient, and accent light when describing what they do. And they may not always talk about storytelling, but it is embedded in their work none-the-less. When I’m working with a client who is converting an old brick warehouse into a frozen yogurt shop, I might suggest neon […]

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Light for Changing

A bedroom with the bed off to the left, the right shows two windows framed with built in drawers and shelves and window seats

Imagine yourself in a windowless, featureless room, like an exam room at the hospital.  There is a light switch on the wall that turns on the overhead fluorescent fixtures.  You can have bright white light or pitch dark at the flick of a switch. And those are your only two choices.  So most of the […]

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Light for Feeling

Tree branches with yellowing leaves against a blue sky

Once you have light for doing and light for knowing, it’s time to think about light for feeling. Can light impact how you feel?  Imagine yourself driving a car.  Suddenly, you see flashing red and blue lights coming from behind you.  Your heartrate rises, your brain goes to high alert, and you reach a state […]

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Light for Knowing

A very pitch black image with the outline of a person shining a weak light towards the camera

Light isn’t just for doing- it is also for knowing where we are, where we are going, and who we are with.  Imagine yourself in a large room that is completely dark- you cannot see anything.  Now add the most basic light for reading- a clip-on book light.  You can see the pages now, yes?  […]

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Light Can Help You