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Code Issues


  August 21, 2015

A lighting designer typically uses different types of lighting fixtures in a space to achieve the desired illumination level. You may have plenty of light but it may be directed to the wrong places. An example is a room with reading levels of light over the seating area using recessed fixtures but no washing of the walls creating a “cave” effect. Though the meter says the lighting is OK at the couch people see the room as dark because the walls are dark. Recessed fixtures are often overused. They should not usually be the only source of light in a room. Over a seating area they often create dramatic shadowing on the people seated and we don’t look very good displayed that way. Eyebrows can create shadows and large bags under the eyes. Table lamps at the seating area are often used to fill in and light people’s faces from a horizontal direction to reduce shadows. Table lamps also direct light at the walls as do pendants and chandeliers. To sum up: in a typical bedroom you may have to put in four (4) 65-watt recessed fixtures to replace a single 120-watt pendant in the center to make the room feel right even though a meter under a single recessed fixture will say it’s plenty of light.