With so much information out there on how to add lighting to your landscape, it can become quite confusing to know how to bring it all together. You may have hundreds of pictures, talked to friends and family and you still feel like you are no closer to your goal.
It’s true that there are literally thousands of directions you could take with your landscape lighting design, but the best choice will be based on a few important factors. If you are the pen and paper list-making type, you will want to take notes. Additionally, speak to a skilled professional who has designed hundreds of landscapes. Since there are so many issues to solve when designing landscape lighting, they will have solid advice on how to work within the confines of your space.
Principle for selecting fixtures and creating an overall design:
When looking for fixtures, don’t forget those that will accent beautiful features like fountains, rare trees, and special areas. Use these focal points to “wow” your guests and offer a sense of awe when looking at your landscape.
Do all of the lighting fixtures work well together? Does each light flow seamlessly to the next? Envision the overall feel of your design and choose fixtures that work well together. Even when lighting focal points, ensure the spotlights match the overall look and feel of the whole.
Add three-dimensional effects by illuminating design elements near and far from your landscape. When you pull up to your driveway, the depth of your lighting will show how far your eyes can see. Pay attention to the effects you want as far as lighting distance is concerned before you select your fixtures.
Unless you are going for a chaotic look, opt for symmetry with your lighting. The proportions should be similar to the eye can look at the entire design as one cohesive whole while still being pulled to various accented features.
One light may look amazing from a certain vantage point, but how does it look if you walk 10 feet in another direction? When designing your lighting, consider the point of view of each angle and all vantage points. A light may create a subtle effect on one side but blind another person on the other. Consistency is the name of the game. Ask friends and family to help you and have them walk around the property and even inside the home to ensure no lights are blinding or hitting areas they shouldn’t. Take special note of how the light hits your neighbor’s property as well.
If you are going for an overall mood, pay attention to how much light is emitted from a particular fixture. Look at narrow and broad beams as well as the direction, whether downlighting or uplighting.
Once you understand these important elements, you can plan out your design and execute it carefully. Speak to a professional if you need clarification. In some home improvement stores, knowledgeable salespeople can also provide assistance.