Three Layers Of Lighting Design

Three Layers Of Lighting Design

For years, lighting was a neglected part of interior design. However, interior designers and architects now appreciate the aesthetic appeal of architectural lighting. The layers of lighting will enhance your room’s visual appeal and compliment the decor.

The three layers of lighting design are ambient, accent, and task lighting. Ambient lighting illuminates the entire room and comes from overhead light fixtures, like pendants. Accent lighting is decorative and highlights points of interest, while task lighting is for specific tasks, like desk lamps. 

The three layers of lighting serve specific functions. Interior designers layer colors to enhance the visual appeal of a room. Layered lighting performs a similar function. However, you should consider the room’s purpose even as you figure out how to use the three layers of lighting. 

Ambient Lighting

The first layer of lighting is ambient lighting, also known as general lighting. This is the layer that comes to mind for most people. It illuminates the entire room and comes from overhead light fixtures. Examples include pendants, chandeliers, ceiling fans, panels, and cove lighting. 

Ambient lighting is usually uniform, so the light fixture is fitted in an area that illuminates the entire room. Large rooms sometimes have more than one source of ambient lighting. 

Accent Lighting. 

Accent lighting is the decorative layer. You can use this lighting to focus on parts of the architecture, artwork, or decors you would like to highlight, especially in the evening when the lights are on. 

Accent lighting is a secondary light. It usually illuminates spaces where ambient light doesn’t reach. This light is usually most effective when it is three times brighter than the surrounding area. 

Task Lighting. 

The third layer of lighting is task lighting. This is supplemental lighting, usually for performing specific tasks. For example, lights for reading, preparing meals, and personal grooming. This lighting may be in the form of table lamps, floor lamps, reading lights, or even portable desktop lamps. 

Why Layered Lighting Is Important. 

Layered lighting is important because it;

  • Provides different lighting options. When you want to illuminate the entire room, you use ambient lighting. Accent and task lighting have a specific use. If you want softer lighting, you can have accent lighting on, and when you want to illuminate a specific space, you should go for task lighting. 
  • It helps to add accents to your space. 
  • You can also highlight core decor pieces and unique architectural designs. 

What To Consider When Using Layered Lighting.

Layered lighting is an important part of interior decor and architectural design. However, you need to consider the following when using the three layers of lighting. 

  • The purpose of the room. Will you be using the room to cook or to watch tv? You may not want bright ambient lighting for a room you mainly use for watching tv. 
  • The mood you wish to create. Having accent and task lighting is critical if you want a cozy and warm space. The color scheme also matters because dark colors need brighter lighting, while bright-colored walls need softer lighting. 

The practicality of installing the layers of lighting. Are you doing major remodeling works in an established house or layering a new house? It may be easier to layer the lights in a new house. 

Layers of lighting are a critical part of architecture and interior decor. Always ask about lighting layering from professionals, and see how best to make it a part of your interior decor.


Latest Issue

BDC 305 Jun 2023