How a drab house can become a warm & illuminated home in no time!
Have you noticed? There is a common trend in the battle of darkness and light. And light always prevails! We want your house to be a winning home; that’s why our landscape design expert, Mark Gawriluk, is going to teach you all that you need to know to elevate your house into the warmest and most glamorous home on the block…with outdoor lights!
Benefits of Outdoor Lighting
We have certainly come a long way since Thomas Edison first demonstrated the incandescent light bulb in 1879, and not just in terms of the technological advancements in lighting, but how and why we light up our nighttime world. Public landscapes and gardens have been illuminated for as long as our interior spaces have existed. We desire spaces to be illuminated for lots of reasons – beauty, security, circulation, and social gatherings or special occasions. Lighting makes the difference between cold and warm spaces, suspicious and safe places, and lost and found destinations.
Beauty of Outdoor Lighting
Well-planned and properly executed landscape lighting not only reveals the beauty already present in your landscape but can also create entirely new focal points through the interplay between light and shadow. Uplights (sometimes called spotlights) are used for emphasis by calling attention to specific architectural or landscape features. An uplight typically uses a narrow light beam to draw focus on one particular object at a time such as an ornamental tree or garden statuary.
However, the placement of up lights is key to creating a dramatic effect. For example, you can highlight certain elements by placing an up light, such as the C-UL Up Light by FX Luminaire, in front of and at the base of the feature you wish to emphasize. The distance from the object and the angle of the uplight can impact how that feature is viewed at night. The closer the light source is to the object the more shadow play you can achieve accentuating textures and intricate branching structures.
In contrast, you can place that same uplight behind an object to create a silhouette. Rather than illuminating the plant itself we can place the up light behind the plant and aim it towards an adjacent exterior wall to create an illuminated backdrop creating a striking silhouette.
Security in Outdoor Lighting
Outdoor lighting is crucial for the safety and security of your home. By providing sufficient illumination in critical areas throughout your property you can deter, detect, and identify any unwanted intruders. A thoughtfully placed fixture can help shed some light on dark corners of your home, especially near exterior doorways and walkways.
A Wall Wash light, like the SL04 Mini Flood Light by Sterling Lighting, creates a wide-spreading, linear wash of light perfect for illuminating larger areas. Oftentimes, I will use Wall Wash Lights to cast a gentle glow along long stretches of retaining walls, exterior walls, or larger trees or groupings of trees. The radiant light that casts off the illuminated surface can fill an exterior space with light without being blinding; it also deters intruders from lurking in the shadows.
Circulation in Outdoor Lighting
Equally important to security is safety for yourself and guests while visiting your property. Circulation on your property will allow for landscape lighting to illuminate uneven surfaces – such as steps or changes in elevation from one surface to another. The most common form of light fixture for this application is a path light like the Bali Path Light by Dauer Manufacturing. Path lights typically follow along walking paths in an alternating pattern to provide ample light along walking surfaces.
Path lights can also follow exterior landscape steps to avoid any tripping hazards. Quite often, though, I’ll utilize an Under-The-Cap light (also known as a wall light or hardscape light) to illuminate steps, columns, or seat walls. The LF Wall Light by FX Luminaire installs under the cap block of the steps to provide ample light that won’t blind you or your guests.
Outdoor Lighting for Social Gatherings and Special Occasions
Exterior lighting isn’t just reserved for safety and beauty. Thoughtfully placed lights can greatly enhance any backyard gathering such as a family BBQ or pool party. Just because the sun has set doesn’t mean the party stops. Downlighting can provide ample light from above to create a warm and inviting patio area. The most common form of down lighting comes in the form of cafe lights. These lights can create the perfect ambiance for terraces and patios. For a more subtle approach, I’ve placed down lights higher up in a tree canopy to create a “moonlight” effect. You can add a blue lens to the JB Down Light by FX Luminaire to create a true natural moonlight effect. This technique allows for a gentle cascading of light through the tree canopy, and it softly illuminates the ground surface while also casting subtle shadows for a very natural lighting effect.
Outdoor Lighting is Customizable
As with many aspects of landscape design, lighting should be customized to your specific wants and needs. What works for one yard may not work in yours. There are near endless choices when it comes to landscape lighting – shapes, sizes, light color and tone, finishes, and lumen output. It can become quite daunting. Some homeowners simply want basic lighting for subtle illumination, whereas others may want the ability to customize their lights. For example, with the Luxor lighting system by FX Luminaire, you can individually control each light in your landscape – and we aren’t just talking about turning them on and off. This system allows the homeowner to alter the color and intensity of every light in the landscape to create a truly unique and customized light show.
Outdoor lighting is a component of landscaping that often is overlooked. Don’t miss an opportunity to showcase your castle at night! There are only great benefits for you to invest in outdoor landscape lighting. We are experts at all things outdoor living! We offer FREE quotes and consultations. Submit a form here or contact our customer service department. It’s an honor to elevate your outdoor living for you and your family to create lasting memories!