The Lord said, “Let there be Light.” And there was light. (Genesis 1:3).
We depend on light for lots of reasons. You can probably name five right now. Like: the grass, the flowers, the trees, vitamin D, good mental health. Light, the fulfillment of life.
I am writing this in my studio, and there is light. North light, with which to paint by. So, what does that mean? Does it mean if I am doing something other than painting, the room’s light is worthless? No . . . this is a functional, beautiful space. This is where I work all day. I write, design, paint, listen to music. I just took this photo from my messy desk. I usually keep that back wall open for art that I am working on. Right now, I am writing my book.
Light is not a mystery, it is an awareness. We are addressing the light of nature, from outside, that would penetrate the house, the building, the bodega, not to be mixed up with artificial light, like lamps and recessed lighting. But what happens when a room suffers from no natural light or north light?
Do you have a room with little light, except for a few lamps? Darn, you say, what do I do with that room, it is so depressing? Right? Okay, so let’s talk about this natural light, where it comes from, and what it does. AND, what to do with your dark, gloomy room.
A north light room is perfect for art painting because there are no reflections to distort the picture. It is the truest light that an artist can have. North light is a constant cool, soft light, never sunshiny. So even on a rainy day, we love it. Sunlight creates reflection and light bounce, so even if the north light doesn’t have the sun in it, the light does have a reflected brightness, except when stormy. Without going into artificial light, the way to bring life to the space is with color and texture. Paint the walls a deep warm color, like Benjamin Moore’s “Designer Selective Colors: #861 or similar, (warm grays work), in an Eggshell finish (not flat), ceilings, bright white (flat finish) and all trim, bright white (satin or glossy finish). Use other reflective objects and finishes, like leather upholstery, or coffee table in leather, or glass, if you don’t have little kids. Something stainless steel or shiny chrome. Tile floor, with area rugs. Smaller reflective objects, like porcelain, small mirrors. Go for it, those implants will bring light into the space.
We have not yet discussed artificial light that do other types of brightening to a space. We can do wonders with ambient, task and accent lighting. Maybe next week?
Have you ever noticed how lighting is used on stage. Last night’s “American Idol” did some clever lighting, as they always do. Especially with Kree’s performance. Her stage set appeared as though she was in space.
What do you think? How much would you like to learn about lighting up your life?