+ This guest post is by Bentley Meeker, Celebrity Lighting Expert
I may not have designed much in the way of light fixtures (coming soon though) but I do know a thing or two about lighting and our environments.
While a lot of emphasis is put on chandeliers, sconces, floor lamps and the like, far less emphasis is placed on the beauty of the light they emit.
While a lamp or pendant may be nice to look at, often they emit a harsh, less attractive light that they otherwise could. Much of this is promulgated by the proliferation of LED’s and, dare I say, CFL’s and an increasingly driven quest for a watt/lumen efficiency. I think reducing consumption is a very important thing, but the phantom footprint of these alternate sources is something that I have never heard considered.
Let’s play out a scenario: I change my incandescent bulbs to CFLs. I cannot dim my lights anymore so I have no control over my light to either set my mood or mirror my mood. I think we can all agree that our behavior is often altered by our environment.
Here’s how mine is altered: I go out. Straight up.
Because I’m in NYC, I walk (although frequently I take a cab. But if I were in Montana, I’d probably drive 60 miles to the nearest restaurant or bar. Once there, I’d eat, drink and consume in a wanton manner because that’s what we do when we’re out. All of these goods will have to be manufactured, packaged, transported (probably a few times, both in component and incomplete forms), warehoused and ultimately retailed out to me, the consumer.
This, as I stated above, I call the phantom footprint. If I do that once a week, that’s a significant addition to my footprint. If I do it 5x per week, I am probably negating all of the efficiency I’ve achieved by putting a more efficient lamping program in my house.
And none of us have actually gotten to study longer term health implications of being entirely under fluorescent or LED light all the time.
Light emission is every bit as important, if not more so, than the look of a fixture. A beautiful shade may not create the ambiance we want if the source is not a beautiful one.
Hardcover: 160 pages
+ Available on amazon – Light x Design: 20 Years of Lighting by Bentley Meeker
+ Image preview from the book