Lighting the Room for Mood and Function

Lighting the Room for Mood and Function

Light is as crucial to human survival as air. It affects us in many ways. The right light can transform the look and feel of a space, creating drama and contrast in a room. Light affects our moods, productivity, our sleep cycles and our eyes. There are three types of lighting that can be combined to create the mood of a room.

Ambient Lighting

Ambient light is the first layer of light in any space. It is considered the “natural light” within a room and has a soft glow that blankets the space evenly to facilitate the basic functioning of life. It is a very natural and flat light that is meant to bring general illumination within a space. Some of the light fixtures used for ambient lights are chandeliers, ceiling fixtures, light kits on ceiling fans, track lighting, recessed ceiling lights, torchieres and wall sconces.

Photo credit: Philips

Task Lighting

This is a smaller more concentrated light. Task lighting is meant to illuminate the work space. It helps you concentrate on your work better and is usually used over counter tops or tables. It works as a contrasting light therefore the ambient light is usually kept dull when using in conjunction with this. Some example of task lights are desk lamps, under counter lights, pendant lights, directed track or recessed lights, vanity lights and adjustable floor lamps.

Photo credit: Standard Products Inc.

Accent Lighting

This is a highly concentrated light that draws the eye to its focal point. It helps add style and drama to a space. It is directed towards décor pieces such as paintings, sculptures, collections or furniture to highlight each and every detail on them. Accent lights include recessed lights, up lights, picture lights, candlelight, niche lighting, lighting inside cabinets, light bridges on media furniture and directed track or recessed lights.

Mood Lighting

A combination of the above mentioned types of lighting can create the perfect ambiance for any space. With the changing needs of today’s times, static light design is not enough and we need a more dynamic and flexible design that can change with the need and use of the space. Many people prefer open plan spaces over segmented space. These spaces are very malleable and can transform with the intended use. Such spaces need a more sophisticated lighting design that can transform with them to suite the mood and need of the user. To address this challenge the latest technology on the market is mood lighting.


It uses various tones and colors of light, varying levels of brightness to create the perfect atmosphere in a room. Mood lighting uses different combinations of ambient, task and accent lighting to create multiple lighting scenes for the same space. Functions such as watching TV, reading a book, hosting a party or just having a laid back relaxing time all require different types of ambiance. With the help of mood lighting the same space can be transformed to cater to all these functions. Mood lighting ranges on the spectrum from soft, warm lights to induce a feeling of calm and relaxation to bright and funky lights providing a lively and invigorating effect.

Getting the lighting right in a luxury design scheme has the potential to give life to the space and change the way each space is perceived by the user and the way it affects him. Mood lighting gives the flexibility to create the perfect light for every function in any kind of space.

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