Sometimes the New York Times is oblivious and yesterday was one of them. In an article titled Lighting a Room, Simplified the author wrote about the importance of lighting in the home. In preparing the article, she spoke to and quoted four interior designers, one fixture manufacturer and one professional lighting designer. In addition, all eight of the photos in the article are taken during the day, so they’re nice illustrations of the use of windows and daylight in residential interiors but terrible illustrations of electric lighting, which is the topic of the article. They seem to be marketing photos for particular lighting fixtures, not examples of good lighting.
It’s too bad. There are plenty of lighting designers who would have gladly shared their expertise and their work with the public if asked. Unfortunately, this article is a reflection of the public’s (and the author’s) lack of awareness of the contribution good lighting, and therefore a good lighting designer, can make to a residential of commercial project.
Lighting doesn’t just come with a building. Most interior designers and architect receive little or no training or education in lighting design when they’re in school. Yes, some do have an affinity for lighting and can create beautiful work despite their lack of training. However, the best lighting design is most likely to come from the best trained people – professional lighting designers. If you are looking, one place to start is the IALD’s web site and the Find A Lighting Designer tool on the home page.