The Lighting Design Starts Here ... not Here!

Something I'd just like to share with you, because its something that's come up a few times recently and has caused a bit of consternation at jb-ld headquarters. Its about what 'lighting design' really means .... which I thought was pretty clear, to be honest.

Let's start with what it is and then move on to darker pastures:

If you want me to produce a lighting design for you - regardless of the size of the project or the assumed simplicity, this is what you get:

1. a layout drawing that shows where everything goes

2. a specification that explains what everything is

3. a second specification that explains how everything is controlled - switching and dimming and what have you.

Put all that stuff together and you'll find a comprehensive amount of information that satisfies all parties; the cient knows what they'll end up with, and the prior discussions will have reinforced that, of course; the architect or interior designer knows how the lightig equipment integrates into the building; the electrical designer or installer knows what's expected in terms of cabling and controls. The full package. It's simple.

This is what lighting design is NOT:

Its not a layout drawing with switching details that the client then takes away and then chooses whatever kind of fitting they fancy. That's rubbish. I'm not really interested in cables and switches and all of that malarkey - I'm interested in LIGHT and what you can do with it. So if I imagine a gorgeous piece of white satin glass mounted on a wall, creating a velvety soft light in the corner just over there, I don't expect to walk in and find a tassled lamp shade with illuminated tavern scene on a brass bracket in its place.

So, if you're ever thinking of engaging someone like me, just bear in mind that we are sensitive souls who get terribly despondent - tetchy, even - when we're asked to provide stuff that, to be honest, is of no real interest to us, unless its the very first step in a wonderfully fulfilling design exercise of which we can all be proud.

Published: 07-06-11 by John Bullock