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Name This field missing. City This field missing. Type of Business This field missing. Business Name This field missing. Forgot Your Password? Enter your Email:. Reset Password. Design: Rachel Cannon Ltd. Interiors Photo: Jessie Preza Photography. Light the way. Lighting or illumination is the deliberate use of light to achieve practical or aesthetic effects. Lighting includes the use of both artificial light sources like lamps and light fixtures, as well as natural illumination by capturing daylight.
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Daylighting using windows, skylights, or light shelves is sometimes used as the main source of light during daytime in buildings. This can save energy in place of using artificial lighting, which represents a major component of energy consumption in buildings. Proper lighting can enhance task performance, improve the appearance of an area, or have positive psychological effects on occupants.
Indoor lighting is usually accomplished using light fixtures , and is a key part of interior design.
Lighting can also be an intrinsic component of landscape projects. With the discovery of fire , the earliest form of artificial lighting used to illuminate an area were campfires or torches. Prehistoric people used primitive oil lamps to illuminate surroundings. These lamps were made from naturally occurring materials such as rocks, shells, horns and stones, were filled with grease , and had a fiber wick. Lamps typically used animal or vegetable fats as fuel. Hundreds of these lamps hollow worked stones have been found in the Lascaux caves in modern-day France , dating to about 15, years ago.
Oily animals birds and fish were also used as lamps after being threaded with a wick. Fireflies have been used as lighting sources. Candles and glass and pottery lamps were also invented. A major reduction in the cost of lighting occurred with the discovery of whale oil. Gas lighting was economical enough to power street lights in major cities starting in the early s, and was also used in some commercial buildings and in the homes of wealthy people. The gas mantle boosted the luminosity of utility lighting and of kerosene lanterns.
The next major drop in price came about in the s with the introduction of electric lighting in the form of arc lights for large space and street lighting followed on by incandescent light bulb based utilities for indoor and outdoor lighting. Over time, electric lighting became ubiquitous in developed countries. Lighting fixtures come in a wide variety of styles for various functions. The most important functions are as a holder for the light source, to provide directed light and to avoid visual glare.
Some are very plain and functional, while some are pieces of art in themselves. Nearly any material can be used, so long as it can tolerate the excess heat and is in keeping with safety codes. An important property of light fixtures is the luminous efficacy or wall-plug efficiency , meaning the amount of usable light emanating from the fixture per used energy, usually measured in lumen per watt. A fixture using replaceable light sources can also have its efficiency quoted as the percentage of light passed from the "bulb" to the surroundings.
The more transparent the lighting fixtures are, the higher efficacy.
Shading the light will normally decrease efficacy but increase the directionality and the visual comfort probability. Color temperature for white light sources also affects their use for certain applications. The color temperature of a white light source is the temperature in kelvins of a theoretical black body emitter that most closely matches the spectral characteristics of the lamp. An incandescent bulb has a color temperature around to kelvins; daylight is around kelvins.
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Lower color temperature lamps have relatively more energy in the yellow and red part of the visible spectrum, while high color temperatures correspond to lamps with more of a blue-white appearance. For critical inspection or color matching tasks, or for retail displays of food and clothing, the color temperature of the lamps will be selected for the best overall lighting effect.
Lighting is classified by intended use as general, accent, or task lighting, depending largely on the distribution of the light produced by the fixture. Forms of lighting include alcove lighting, which like most other uplighting is indirect. This is often done with fluorescent lighting first available at the World's Fair or rope light , occasionally with neon lighting , and recently with LED strip lighting.
It is a form of backlighting. Soffit or close to wall lighting can be general or a decorative wall-wash, sometimes used to bring out texture like stucco or plaster on a wall, though this may also show its defects as well. The effect depends heavily on the exact type of lighting source used. Recessed lighting often called "pot lights" in Canada , "can lights" or 'high hats" in the US is popular, with fixtures mounted into the ceiling structure so as to appear flush with it.
These downlights can use narrow beam spotlights, or wider- angle floodlights , both of which are bulbs having their own reflectors. There are also downlights with internal reflectors designed to accept common 'A' lamps light bulbs which are generally less costly than reflector lamps. Track lighting , invented by Lightolier ,  was popular at one period of time because it was much easier to install than recessed lighting, and individual fixtures are decorative and can be easily aimed at a wall.
It has regained some popularity recently in low-voltage tracks, which often look nothing like their predecessors because they do not have the safety issues that line-voltage systems have, and are therefore less bulky and more ornamental in themselves. A master transformer feeds all of the fixtures on the track or rod with 12 or 24 volts, instead of each light fixture having its own line-to-low voltage transformer.
There are traditional spots and floods, as well as other small hanging fixtures. A modified version of this is cable lighting , where lights are hung from or clipped to bare metal cables under tension. A sconce is a wall-mounted fixture, particularly one that shines up and sometimes down as well. It is typically a floor lamp but may be wall-mounted like a sconce. Further interior light fixtures include chandeliers, pendant lights, ceiling fans with lights, close-to-ceiling or flush lights, and various types of lamps .
The portable or table lamp is probably the most common fixture, found in many homes and offices. The standard lamp and shade that sits on a table is general lighting, while the desk lamp is considered task lighting. Magnifier lamps are also task lighting. The illuminated ceiling was once popular in the s and s but fell out of favor after the s. This uses diffuser panels hung like a suspended ceiling below fluorescent lights, and is considered general lighting. Other forms include neon, which is not usually intended to illuminate anything else, but to actually be an artwork in itself.
This would probably fall under accent lighting, though in a dark nightclub it could be considered general lighting. In a movie theater , steps in the aisles are usually marked with a row of small lights for convenience and safety, when the film has started and the other lights are off.
Traditionally made up of small low wattage, low voltage lamps in a track or translucent tube, these are rapidly being replaced with LED based versions. Street Lights are used to light roadways and walkways at night. Some manufacturers are designing LED and photovoltaic luminaires to provide an energy-efficient alternative to traditional street light fixtures.
Floodlights can be used to illuminate work zones  or outdoor playing fields during nighttime hours. Beacon lights are positioned at the intersection of two roads to aid in navigation. Sometimes security lighting can be used along roadways in urban areas, or behind homes or commercial facilities. These are extremely bright lights used to deter crime. Security lights may include floodlights.
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