When we are talking about lighting, we talk also about visual comfort. A luminous and balanced environment is the result of wise choices, right illuminance’s levels, right light’s direction and distributions, high chromatic performance of the lighting sources, adequate glare, luminance, and contrast control… in summary, it is a combination of all the main factors that influence our visual comfort.
We look for visual comfort in our daily life as well, such as when we adjust blue lights in our smartphones to prevent sight tiredness, especially at night.
As a lighting designer I ask myself: why the visual comfort is still underestimated in many places where we live?
I think about historical villages, urban centers, parks, and churches… we must think about lighting with new project standards and draft architectural and urban projects including the lighting project in it since the early stage of the design.
From the ‘800 until today, the industry put on the market infinite lighting sources, always more performing, with impressive technologies. The human being won against the oldest and most powerful emotion: the fear of the dark.
We enlightened kilometers of streets, squares, buildings, parks, houses and finally today we understood that we overdid it. Artificial light that spreads through indoor and outdoor spaces goes beyond the basic human needs, today the environment suggests us to be careful about the sustainable aspects in order to not compromise the possibility for the next generations to achieve their goals and needs.
A few decades have passed since we first started talking about Environmental Quality, quality of products and construction technologies, focusing on their performances and the environmental effects they may cause.
With the goals set by 2030’s Agenda, is now over the idea that sustainability is just an environmental prerogative and it was replaced by a holistic vision focused on human health: construction design turned from a “green” approach to a “human centered” approach. We understood that, in order to safeguard ourselves, it is urgent to design with consciousness and without unnecessary wastes. Wellbeing does not only come from comfortable indoor and outdoor spaces, lighting and visual comfort are elements that help us navigate spaces, elevating their qualities.
Precise optical systems, efficient LED technology, smart light control, are the tools that the industry offers us, it is now designers’ duty to make good use of them.