Custom design

Singapore, 22nd February 2011

Customising light fittings is a regular part of our job as lighting designers. While there are thousands of light fitting designs available in the market each with numerous lighting effect variations, it may be surprising that we still need at times to customise the light fitting to our needs. But with so many different applications, visual demands and mood requirements we often need that extra special effect to make our design stand out from the ordinary.

The last few days I have been testing some customised samples for one of our India projects were we adapted the fitting to local needs. Our customisation consists of two main things, one; a value engineering to bring the fitting in line with budget but without compromising on the final lighting quality and two; a redesign of lighting patterns to suit the local taste. While the first customisation (the value engineering) is done with the factory engineers of the manufacturer, the second is a design change. In this case we are designing a special landscape bollard for a resort in Goa (India) that projects shadow patterns from a source that simulates candle light. The perforated shadow patterns were modified to represent typical Goan patterns, well known from local architecture and culture. Our challenge was to find a light source that could project the light and shadow patterns without creating glare. Obviously perforations create openings that potentially expose the light source to the eye.

After some testing and playing around in our office, we managed to settle on a LED incandescent retrofit light with a small focal point, necessary to create the shadow projection, a big departure from the original metal halide lamp. In the process we are saving more than 80% energy! By further redesigning the apertures and perforation ratios we managed to get it just right…Can’t wait to see the end result on site!  

In Light Watch today I would like to focus on our primary light source…the sun. As lighting designers we tend to loose ourselves in artificial lighting, but often the most magical lighting effects take place right under our noose in nature. Nature is often our greatest source of inspiration when it comes to lighting effects.


Light Watch 37: Sunlight filtering through the trees

22. February 2011 by Martin Klaasen
Categories: light watch, lighting and culture, lighting design | Leave a comment

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