Designing for Lighting Effects
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Designing for Lighting Effects

May 31, 2019
Video Length:  57:38
Presented By:  Ryan Williams with FX Luminaire

Ensuring that each of your lighting jobs is creative and unique means means paying close attention to the nuances of the site itself. All too often, conforming to a routine of designing on autopilot has left clients with lighting that doesn’t completely highlight the landscape or architecture. Without going into instructional CAD content, we’ll hear FX Luminaire go over general approaches for analysis and design that will help give your sites the illumination they deserve.

Webinar Contents:

Note: The following catalog of content covered in this webinar is time stamped to allow you to follow along or skip to sections of the video that are relevant to your questions. You can also search for content on this page using the FIND command in your browser (CTRL + F in Windows, Command + F in Mac OS.)

  • Intro/TOC
  • Default to Down Lighting
  • Move Upstairs
  • Change Your Quantity
  • Think Differently
  • Accessorize

0:00 – 8:51: Intro/TOC

Major caveats for lighting design (7:15):

  • Needs of homeowners
  • Needs of the space

8:52 – 31:19: Default to Down Lighting

Down lighting is the most natural and cost-efficient form of lighting, and according to Ryan, it’s the most beautiful.


Down lighting categories:

  • Directional
  • Pendants
  • Surface-mounted


Controlling glare (11:10)

Potential issues:

  • Too much light
  • Excessive contrast


Types of caps for controlling glare:

  • Short shroud
  • Long shroud
  • Straight deep
  • Straight flat


Ryan recommends using a hex baffle with any of these types of cap to help eliminate glare.


Lamp position (16:03)

  • Restrict field angle
  • Beam angle unchanged


Lamp accessories (17:50)

  • Dichroic lens
  • Spread lens
  • Hex baffle
  • Recessor ring


Down lighting: Directional (19:50)

  • Grounds the house
  • Watch glare
  • Higher labor


Example of a down-lit house compared with an up-lit house (21:50)


Down lighting: Pendants (23:20)


Down lighting: Surface (25:15)

  • Fixed position
  • Surface mounted
  • Visible and viewable
  • Soft lighting
  • More fixtures, less light


Surface lights can be mounted to either a vertical or horizontal surface.


Wall-mounted surface lights (27:10)

  • Horizontal or vertical
  • Wall grazing (warning!)
  • Existing wall sconces
  • Wall plate that fits over a junction box (J-box)


Down lighting: Pendants (30:27)

  • General overhead
  • Movement
  • Decorative
  • Reduce fixture count

31:20 – 39:26: Move Upstairs

Things to think about (33:05):

  • Gutter mounts
  • Watch your scallops
  • Paint after installation
  • Risers


How wire is run to the transformer (35:55)


More up lighting considerations (37:30):

  • Multiple viewing angles
  • Single source

39:27 – 45:06: Change Your Quantity


Examples of up lighting, grazing, and silhouetting (40:30)


Options for lighting categories, examples (42:37):

  • Directional up light
  • Directional wall wash

45:07 – 46:59: Think Differently


  • Unique applications
  • Use of accessories

47:00 – end: Accessorize

Ryan recommends focusing on architectural lighting first, then landscape lighting second.


Techniques for path lighting (49:35)


Question: Does FX Luminaire have a fixed lighting design course? (51:00)

Answer: Yes! You can access it through the Training section on the F/X Luminaire website.


Uplighting trees on a vegetated roof (51:55)


Information on lighting for under a capstone or on a 3-foot stone wall (52:45)


Information on in-ground lighting for a pathway (54:15)


Consideration of what point in the process to add fixtures to a small design (55:20)

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