My name is Erica and I am a 21 year old lighting design student from Sweden. I study Lighting Design at Jönköping University, and I got the amazing opportunity to do my internship here in the US with Hartranft Lighting Design, and Andrea Hartranft. In this series of blogposts you will follow me and learn about my experiences here in the US.
Week 5 Spoiler Alert
This has been another great week, once again. I am getting really spoiled!
Light Calculations / Perceptions of Light
My work has been focused on light calculations this week. Calculations are a very powerful tool when you plan lighting and there are several different programs that have different strengths. There are even some programs where you can type in location, date and time and you can calculate the daylight which is very valuable, especially when you will use daylight controlled lighting. There are pros and cons to lighting calculations and I think it is important to know that. When you are planning lighting there are sometimes regulations and standards that you have to follow and then it is great to be able to make a calculation to see if the lighting is meeting the standards. It is an easy way to see the different lux levels in the room and you do not have to do a full scale mock up to get an idea of how the finished product will look like. With that said, the calculation does not say anything about how the light will be perceived or how the room will feel.
As I mentioned before there are some standards that you have to follow as a lighting designer and they vary a lot. I have learned that the standards vary a bit between the states here in the US but in Sweden we have the same standards in the whole country. It can be very good to have a standard because it can make sure that the installation is good and that the lighting is adjusted for the user but that is always the case. In my education we have made installations and created spaces to evaluate the standards. We noticed that some standards are very good and that some are not created with the user in mind. It can be difficult to know when to deviate from the standards. This is something you learn on your own but I think it is important to reach out to other, more experienced, lighting designers as well.