Glare is a function of the aiming angle or in scientific terms; the angle of incidence. See the image which illustrates the angle of incidence on a flat surface. The same holds true when lighting art on a wall. The best you can do is to change the position of the light either forward, back, left or right to redirect the glare to the least viewed area. Left or right pitches the glare to the opposite side of the room. Objects above eye level are the most challenging of all art lighting applications. It is very difficult to eliminate glare from all angles.
To test for glare on your art, get a ladder and a flashlight. Have someone help you try several positions in the room while you observe the glare from various positions in the room. When you can see the flashlight image in the glass you know that is the angle of incidence.
Our projector is design for offset mounting to specifically address reflected glare and still maintain the masked area of light.
Strong art light placement is, perhaps, the most important element of an attractive creative display. With the proper setup, it is possible to eliminate glare and shadows, and it is possible to create a powerful look. It takes a little foresight, though, and a little planning, which is why it is best to bring on an illumination expert to facilitate the process. With expert assistance, you won’t have to waste time cutting holes in the ceiling that may not work.
In fact, homeowners may not realize exactly where such a fixture can go. Art light placement is usually focused on the ceiling, but Phantom’s projectors are more versatile than that. Some homeowners don’t want to alter their ceiling, so a surface mount projector makes more sense. And surface mount projectors can go just about anywhere, including on top of tall furniture.
It may seem like the best spot to put the fixture is right in front of the subject, but it often makes more sense to offset it. This is because setting the projector off to the side will direct any glare off to the side of the room as well. Pushing away the glare ensures the painting looks nice from most viewing angles. Shadows are an easier problem to handle and are normally caused by deeper frames. Setting the projector a little further back can fix this.
While projector setup issues can be overcome, you want to figure it out before installing the fixture. Phantom’s experts take the guesswork out of the process, ensuring that the projector works as intended the moment it is installed.
A homeowner that learns how to focus art lights will be in a good position when it is time to place fixtures for a display. Every display has to contend with glare and shadows to some extent, and how the fixtures are adjusted to compensate for them will determine the overall quality of the display. If glare is present from most standard viewing angles, it will effectively render the painting invisible from normal viewing range. Shadows are also a pain because they affect the look of the painting and cannot be avoided by looking at the subject from a different angle. It is, therefore, important to eliminate these two annoyances from the equation.
This is easier said than done. When fixtures are in the ceiling, particularly in high ceilings, the angle at which the beam strikes the painting will force glare down into the viewer’s face. Offsetting the fixtures so that they cast glare off to the sides can prevent it from becoming a problem. If there is a deep frame or other object casting shadows, the fixture can, again, be offset to neutralize them.
An illumination expert will know how to focus the art lights just right to minimize the presence of glare and shadows. An expert will also know which fixtures will work best in a given setting, so it is always a good idea to consult with the professionals at Phantom Lighting before beginning the project.
The installation instructions behind most art lights are beyond the reach of many homeowners, as they require special training or equipment to place properly. Interestingly, when it comes to optical framing projectors, which experts consider the best option for illuminating paintings or sculptures, even experts have trouble with them. That’s because every manufacturer uses nonstandard processes to design their projectors, and an expert either has to be trained in that particular brand of projector, or try to intuit how the fixture is designed. This often leads to botched placement.
Fortunately, the installation instructions for Phantom’s art lights are simple to follow and are designed to be workable by people of any skill level. The process is pretty quick. First, a spot has to be found for the projector, and Phantom’s can be placed just about anywhere because they are highly adjustable. Once a spot is found, the housing is secured inside the ceiling by attaching it to ceiling joists. A hole is cut out for the projector’s trim and the mounting cradle is affixed to the rotation ring. The projector is then secured to the mounting cradle and a cover plate fitted to the bottom of the fixtures to conceal everything from view. At this point, all that’s left is to aim the fixture and turn it on.
In all, it should only take a few hours, but once set up, it will look like you spent much more time on such a beautiful display.
The right art illuminations need techniques that make a huge visual impact. Many homeowners rely on the subject’s natural beauty to snag attention, but why make it harder than it has to be? Lighting can take an already gorgeous work and spark new life into it, turning back the clock and making the subject appear as if it was just created. Proper lighting will also improve the vividness of the piece and make it seem more vibrant.
Most expert designers have an eye for art illuminations, and their techniques are useful in a variety of settings. A homeowner may know how they want the display to look, but a lighting expert can make it happen. If there are any challenges during the installation, a professional can help fix the issue. For example, perhaps the building is older and made with resilient material like brick. It’s generally not possible to cut brick, so an expert may switch over to a mounted light instead, and one that produces the same look that the homeowner was hoping for. Also, a designer has trained their eye so that they can tell what optimal lighting looks like with a variety of subjects. This experience in hundreds of installations will be useful when helping a homeowner, ensuring the painting, sculpture or photograph is perfectly lit.
Residential art lights may seem like a luxury, but if a homeowner is going to invest hundreds or thousands in precious paintings or sculptures, it makes no sense not to pair them with the right fixtures. Otherwise, the piece will not get the attention and admiration it deserves. In fact, homeowners are often surprised by how different their paintings look with proper lighting. But as exciting as it can be to set up a display, it’s best for a homeowner to seek out professional assistance before picking a fixture.
Perhaps the biggest mistake a homeowner can make is picking out residential art lights before doing the research. Every fixture behaves a little differently, even if they appear to look and function the same way. The only way to be sure of how a fixture will perform is to take it out of the box and test it. However, a homeowner isn’t going to want to do this with a bunch of random fixtures, as this will only lead to frustration. Instead, a homeowner should consider consulting with an illumination designer like Phantom Lighting beforehand.
A designer usually has a handful of fixtures they are comfortable working with and know exactly how they will perform in most settings. With a designer’s help, there won’t be any surprises once the fixtures are installed, and a designer can often substitute inferior fixtures with the most flexible and customizable options. Rather than settling on something that won’t deliver the best results, talk with an expert to find out which fixture will enhance the artwork.
Experts have access to a vast number of techniques for lighting artwork, but they all approach the job the same way. The purpose of these fixtures is to frame the subject with illumination; helping it stand out from its surroundings and making it appear more vivid while preserving its true colors. Illuminating something as delicate as a painting or sculpture takes planning, as even the slightest mistake in the setup will produce a muddy or off-putting appearance. This is the reason art museums and galleries often enlist the help of illumination designers when setting up a new exhibit.
A homeowner can learn a lot reading up on common techniques for lighting artwork online. Eventually, though, the fixtures will have to be selected and placed, and this is when it can be helpful to visit museums or galleries to see how they do it. An illumination design firm can also provide detailed guidance, and they often have showrooms where homeowners can see each fixture in action. However, every space is different, so it is best to test the fixtures before cutting out holes and installing them. During a test, pay attention to any frame shadows and how the illumination strikes the face of the painting. If it’s the kind of look you want, consider bringing in a professional to place and angle the fixtures correctly. They can also adjust the overall level of illumination in the room to help the subject stand out even more, helping your painting or sculpture get the attention it deserves.
Contact Phantom Lighting for complimentary assistance with the best design and techniques for your precious artwork.
A sharp contemporary picture deserves lights that are just as sharp, and Phantom can help with the process. It may seem like a secondary consideration when putting together a display space, but the right illumination can make all the difference. Any designer will tell you that even the boldest, most vivid pieces need support from the right fixtures. It should be no surprise that professional venues like museums dedicate a lot of space and effort into selecting the proper fixtures for their exhibits. As long as a homeowner puts time into planning, they should have no trouble piecing together the right setup.
There are many approaches to showing off a contemporary picture and the best lights for the setting will depend on what aesthetic a homeowner wants to have. For example, if a homeowner wishes to show off multiple subjects or create a spotlight effect, surface mounted track fixtures will be a strong choice. If a more dramatic appearance is the desire, recessed cans will work better. An increasing number of homeowners are turning to contour projectors as well, and these are ideal for eliminating spill illumination. This gives the subject a glowing effect that is unlike what other fixtures can provide.
No matter what the choice is, though, it is best to consult with an illumination expert to ensure that the fixtures are set up correctly and safely. This will guarantee that the subject will have beautiful illumination for years to come.
There are a few standard methods to lighting framed art, though one method has become a favorite among illumination designers and installers. Surface-mounted track fixtures are still popular, as well as recessed halogen cans, and both are in homes and galleries around the world. Contour projectors, though, have become the top choice for any high-end installation and are made specifically for illuminating various creative subjects.
Lighting framed art with a contour projector is the best solution in nearly any setting. A contour projector is installed inside the ceiling and finished with a discreet cover plate. It is built flush with the ceiling and only needs a small aperture to fire the halogen beam through, so it’s the most subtle and streamlined fixture available. Contour projectors are also more reliable when it comes to producing an even spread of illumination, and their halogen lamps are the best on the market for rendering color. The difference between a halogen fixture and an incandescent or fluorescent fixture is enormous, as it will bring out the true colors in the subject.
Contour projectors are most prized for their ability to produce a unique look that other fixtures cannot manage. Prior to installation, the projector is fitted with a masking implement. This consists of either a cut template or a set of adjustable shutters. The mask confines the illumination to the subject’s edges, which means no spill illumination. The result is an intensely bright piece of art mounted to a stretch of wall that is much darker. The high contrast makes the subject appear more saturated and vibrant; a stark effect that only a contour projector is capable of.
Lighting oil paintings is not like illuminating other pieces of art. These artworks are often many years old and are much more delicate than art from other mediums. This makes them susceptible to subtle risks from ultraviolet radiation and excessive heat. While these stresses can damage any piece of art, they are much harder on fine art made with certain pigments. For this reason, homeowners must plan accordingly when setting up fixtures, as some are too risky to use for delicate artwork.
Heat and ultraviolet radiation will both cause steady damage to art canvases, but they are also punishing on oils. Over time, the stress placed on the pigments by heat and radiation will cause them to discolor, break down, and possibly split. Once this occurs, restoration can be extremely expensive and just impossible in some situations. However, if done with the right fixtures, lighting oil paintings is possible without worrying about heat or UV rays.
The easiest way to remove heat from the equation is to use fixtures that are installed a safe distance away from the art. Recessed fixtures like contour projectors or recessed cans, as well as track fixtures, are all set up several yards away from the art. This provides more than enough buffer for heat dissipation. UV radiation is trickier to deal with, as it is especially plentiful in the halogen fixtures that are used by fine art lighting experts. Most high-end fixtures are compatible with UV filters, though, and these will eliminate almost all of the ultraviolet rays from the illumination. This does not alter the appearance of the light in the slightest.
Following these simple recommendations will ensure that your priceless piece of fine art will bring you joy for many more years.