Lighting Design for the Interiors and Exteriors of a Structure

Guide to Lighting Design for Interiors and Exteriors

Lighting is one of the major and important aspects of interior design exterior design as well. Aesthetics and Functionality need to go hand in hand when it comes to interior lighting techniques. Lighting design from space to space. For example, Lighting design for a museum cannot be similar to the lighting design for a residence. It changes with the purpose, its functionality, its design, area and Volume of the perceived space. These are some of the basic lighting design factors that one should consider while analyzing and designing. In this article, we will discuss in brief some of the important factors of Lighting design to be considered before deciding on the selection of a particular type of lighting technique.


Lighting effect | Dining Area
Lighting effect | Dining Area

Factors that influence Design

  1. Function of the space
  2. Dimensions and details
  3. Furnishings and layouts
  4. Style
  5. Aesthetic
  6. D├ęcor
  7. Lighting budget

Function of the space

Function of the space is one of the most important factor to be considered and studied before designing the lighting for a particular space. The lighting technique used for a particular space helps in illuminating the required spaces for a specific task or to create a specific ambience.

Lighting for specific Task

Ambient Lighting or general lighting for general illumination

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New material trends, Aesthetics and Lighting Techniques

New changing Trends in the Materials and Furniture Design

With increasing awareness among people about eco friendly products and green homes, people are orienting themselves towards using eco friendly products and use materials that are readily available in nature and less energy intensive.

Interior Design
Interior Design

Use of Fabric in a different way

There has been a huge revolution in fabric with people becoming more experimental. The trend is towards natural fibres such as cotton, linen and silk as well as to incorporating design, particularly graphic design into the fabric.

Concerns on health and safety have led to the manufacture of fire-retardant fabric and the pace of 21st century life has new demands like stain-retardant or spill-retardant features for fabric.

Materials such as Damask, silk, cotton, linen, weaves, textures, Graphic printing, Ancient ethnic prints, florals etc.

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Direct Lighting | Ambient Lighting Techniques

Lighting Techniques

Lighting enhances the ambiance of the place. It is the deliberate application to achieve some pleasing aesthetic effect. Lighting techniques differ from purpose to purpose. For example, for lighting up of the Dining Room, the kind of lighting technique and lighting fixtures used are different from that used in lighting up Water bodies such fountains, artificial lakes etc. because each one of these places creates a whole different feel of the space.

Pendant Lighting | Direct Lighting in a Restaurant
Pendant Lighting | Direct Lighting in a Restaurant

In this article, we will discuss Direct Lighting Techniques and the lighting fixtures that are used specifically for Direct Lighting System.

Here are some of the other lighting methods apart from Direct Lighting:

  1. Direct Lighting
  2. Semi-Direct Lighting
  3. Indirect Lighting
  4. Concealed Lighting
  5. Semi-concealed Lighting

Dining Lighting makes use of Concealed Lighting, Semi-concealed Lighting, Direct and Indirect Lighting System.

Task Lighting makes use of Direct Lighting system.

Underwater Lighting makes use of Diffused Lighting system.

Spot Lighting is complete different system of Lighting but since it has focussed illumination, it can fall under the category of Direct Lighting.

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Semi-Direct Lighting | Ambient Lighting Techniques

Semi-Direct Lighting Design

Semi-Direct Lighting is the kind of lighting provided from a source without reflection from other surfaces.

In daylighting, this means that the light has travelled on a straight path from the sun to the point of interest.

In electrical lighting it usually describes an installation of ceiling mounted or suspended luminaires with mostly downward light distribution characteristics.

Semi-direct Lighting Techniques
Semi-direct Lighting Techniques

Types of Lighting

One of the primary functions of a luminaire is to direct the light to where it is needed. The light distribution produced by luminaires is characterized by the Illuminating Engineering Society as follows:

  • Direct Lighting ( 90 to 100 percent of the light is directed downward for maximum use.
  • Indirect Lighting( 90 to 100 percent of the light is directed to the ceilings and upper walls and is reflected to all parts of a room.
  • Semi-Direct Lighting( 60 to 90 percent of the light is directed downward with the remainder directed upward.
  • Semi-indirect Lighting ( 60 to 90 percent of the light is directed upward with the remainder directed downward.
  • Highlighting Lighting( the beam projection distance and focusing ability characterize this luminaire)

Read moreSemi-Direct Lighting | Ambient Lighting Techniques