Architects: The importance of lighting design

Architects: The importance of lighting design


Without lighting, we are all in the dark. With great lighting, you can create a human experience. Create depth and dimension, light and shade, draw attention to textures and colours. So, with poorly planned lighting, what experience does that create?

With the right lighting design, you can illuminate all the beauty of a building, impacting the way people view and experience architecture. Whilst highlighting shapes and textures, it also has the power to manipulate the way people view this architecture, creating shapes and textures that are inexistent. As Renzo Piano once said, “light has not just intensity, but also a vibration, which is capable of roughening a smooth material, of giving a three-dimensional quality to a flat surface.”

The three aspects of architectural lighting design

Understanding the functionality of lighting design is vital to assuring the correct ambience and effects are achieved. There are three aspects that should be the focus when assessing architectural lighting design.


Lighting is vital for aesthetic enjoyment, transforming the feel of a space. In both commercial and private settings, lighting is used to influence how people feel; how people connect to the architecture around them. Flashing bright lights in a bar or club can invoke energy, whereas a dimly lit restaurant can invoke feelings of romance and serenity. Many people visit commercial buildings for the look, just as much as the experience, much like your home may get more compliments if the lighting is designed to physically appeal to guests. 


Keeping things at the most basic level, the purpose of lighting is to produce a sufficient amount of light - the right amount for its environment. An office environment will require bright lights to induce focus, whereas many spaces benefit from dim lighting. One way to meet all needs is to introduce an effective dimming system. One that allows you to switch from full brightness, down the lowest of levels. One that allows you to save these settings and keep the brightness level you require, much like Zano Controls’ built-in Smart Settings.


There is a growing pressure on companies to be more sustainable. Architects must ensure they are achieving maximum impact with their lighting projects, whilst consuming minimum energy. LED is the most energy efficient option, as they can convert a much higher percentage of their energy into light - something an LED’s alternatives are not able to achieve at such a high level.

The importance of planning

There are various aspects to consider during the planning stages of lighting. Aesthetic features such as colour and shape are slightly easier to tackle with the right eye, but functionality requires even more thought. 

You’re planning a domestic lighting project. Will your client want the ability to dim from multiple points in the same room? From both ends of the staircase? Then you will need a dimmer capable of allowing for multi-point control, such as our ZSMARTLED or for higher wattages, our ZBARLED

Or say, for example, you’re planning a commercial lighting project, one with complex LED fittings and fixtures. Higher loads and multiple control points required. Do you have a dimmer that is capable of controlling the lighting in this capacity without expensive bespoke technology? Our ZBARLED is great for large loads, dimming 0-1000W/VA straight-off-the shelf. What’s more, you can get the installer to wire more in parallel for even larger loads. 

And finally, if you’re wanting to add lighting control to any LED lighting project, whether grid, plated or module is the aesthetic your client is after, you’ll need a dimmer that works with LED digital technology in mind. The Zano Controls LED dimming range is built for any type of LED lighting project. Simply use our interactive product finder to find the solution you’re after. 

It’s also vital these planning stages align with the planning stages of the whole project and aren’t an afterthought, or these more technical details may not be as easily achievable.


Do you have a big project coming up? One that requires an intricate lighting plan? Get in touch with #TeamZano to discuss your project specification requirements on 0345 519 5858 and we’ll be able to assist.

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