A Contemporary Picture Deserves The Best Lights

A Contemporary Picture Deserves The Best LightsA 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.

Choosing The Best Option Of Modern Art Picture Lights

Choosing The Best Option Of Modern Art Picture LightsWith modern art, well-placed picture lights are a must, or the painting will fall flat. Many people confuse this period with contemporary art, assuming it consists of extremely bold colors and bold patterns. However, what these paintings are known for is their incredible technique, and every piece contains hundreds of subtle touches and gradations. Because they contain many fine touches, they need powerful and precisely aimed fixtures to showcase them properly.

Even though it has been around for a while, halogen illumination is still considered the best option when setting up modern art picture lights. The reason being that it displays colors better than any other source of light, though incandescent and LED fixtures can each perform well in some situations. LED fixtures, in particular, are considered the future of art illumination, as they produce close to zero heat and UV radiation, both of which can cause damage to the painting.

For now, halogen is used in most mount and recessed fixtures, though only when it can be placed some distance away. Halogen is used in Phantom’s optical framing projectors, all of which are fitted with UV filters to block radiation. Phantom’s projectors install inside the ceiling and are nearly completely concealed, only requiring a small aperture to fire a beam through. What sets Phantom’s projectors apart are their ability to shape the illumination to the subject, creating a stark level of contrast between the painting and the wall it is mounted to. This will instantly make the artwork the focal point of the room.

Illuminating Fine Art By Using Traditional Picture Lights

Using Traditional Picture Lights Fo Illuminating Fine ArtAlthough a homeowner may not realize it when they first picked the piece out, illuminating fine art can be tricky, but there are many traditional picture lights available to make the task easier. Any fixture can fill the space up with bright illumination if there are enough of them, but it takes a delicate, subtle touch to give the artwork the stage it deserves. Homeowners often underestimate how much of an impact a fixture can have on the art. The wrong illumination source will make it impossible to see the true colors in the painting while the right choice can almost make the subject appear alive.

Incandescent, halogen and LED lamps are found in nearly all traditional picture lights, though even they don’t behave the same. Incandescent illumination is some of the warmest available, outputting a range of yellow and orange tones. This can make a painting with similar colors appear more vibrant, but it will distort blues and greens. LED illumination will soon be a fixture of choice, as it is efficient and safe to use around art, but it can’t quite match halogen lighting in terms of color rendering.

In general, it is best to set up fixtures that are around three times as intense as ambient illumination in the home. This will be strong enough to neutralize the effects of ambient light on the art, but not so bright that it creates a lot of glare. An illumination expert can help a homeowner achieve this ratio.

Fine art is a significant investment, and displaying it without the right fixtures is a waste. Don’t let that happen. Speak to the experts at Phantom Lighting to avoid leaving your art in the dark.

Gallery Lighting Creates An Elegant Way For Displaying Art Work

Any venue that displays beautiful pieces of history or art can greatly benefit from gallery lighting. Decorative fixtures are unlike standard models in that they are primarily used to enhance the look of the subject. Incandescent or fluorescent bulbs are ideal for illuminating a room, but they do a poor job of representing colors in a painting, photograph or other work of art. To bring out the inner vividness in any piece, fixtures that output light across the spectrum should be used.

Phantom offers a number of halogen projectors that are perfect for gallery lighting. Each one produces illumination similar to the natural rays of the sun. Unlike the sun, though, Phantom’s projectors don’t bombard the work with harmful ultraviolet or infrared radiation. UV and infrared energy will cause the subject to deteriorate over time, so it must be filtered out of a light source. Phantom’s projectors do just that while also bathing the piece in neutral tones.

These projectors are mounted in the ceiling and keep a low profile. They only require a small aperture in the ceiling to function, so they are nearly impossible to see. Also, the projector can be calibrated so that it only illuminates the subject, and nothing else. This eliminates shadows and prevents the device from illuminating the wall behind the piece. What this means is an observer won’t be able to tell where the radiance is coming from. The effect is breathtaking, because it appears the subject is glowing, illuminated from within.

Phantom’s halogen projectors are easy to install and are compact enough to handle with ease. They are appropriate for any gallery setting, including art and history museums, private collections or a treasured piece above the mantle.

Choose Recessed Lighting For Your Art Work

Recessed lighting is typically used to add an artistic flair to a room, but it is also adept at providing crisp, functional illumination. They are usually placed along the edges of a room to make the space feel larger and warmer. These fixtures produce softer illumination, mostly because the bulb is shielded from direct view. This makes them ideal for intimate settings and venues like museums and art galleries. They are built into the ceiling, so they need very little room to function. Fortunately, fixtures produced by Phantom are custom built for every installation, so they are ready for immediate placement.

These fixtures are normally installed in modern or urban homes, though they can be placed in any building that needs a design upgrade. They tend to function better when placed along the edges of a room, about eighteen inches to two feet away from the wall. Here, recessed lighting can brighten up the room, giving the illusion that the walls are being pushed back. This makes the room feel larger and more inviting. These fixtures produce more compact beams of radiance, so an installer will need to place several to adequately brighten up a space.

These fixtures are perfect for drawing eyes to a piece of art or other subject. Because they cast warmer, more dramatic illumination, they can bring attention to a wall hanging or standing piece. This is why they are often found in museums and art spaces.

These fixtures can be fitted with incandescent, LED or halogen bulbs. Incandescent bulbs are popular for their warm illumination, but halogen and LED fixtures are more energy efficient. No matter the choice of bulbs, this type of lighting will give any interior a fresh look.

The Best Art Deserves the Best Art Lighting from the Best Lighting Manufacturer.

The best art should be shown in the best possible art light. While, lighting your artwork may present a challenge at first because there are so many art lighting fixtures and lamps for you to choose from, a basic understanding of the elements essential to high-end artwork and picture lighting will help you quickly narrow down your choices to a select few fixtures that embody several, or even all, of the elements that characterize the best lighting for art.

The Light Must Strike The Art at Exactly The Right Angle.
In order to understand just how critical angles are to lighting art, try the following experiment: Stand in front of any mirror in your home with a small flashlight and shine the flashlight directly into the mirror. You will instantly be struck by a bright, direct reflection, as the mirror actually magnifies the beam by scattering the photons when it reflects them back into your eyes.

Now, move to different angles, moving the flashlight in the process. When you can clearly see your own form without being blinding by the reflection of the flashlight, you have found be best angle for lighting yourself in the mirror.

The same accent lighting tools are used by designers to position fixtures at the best angles for lighting art. Any surface reflects light to some extent, and while it may not be as intense as a reflection in a mirror, it will nonetheless cause discomfort to viewers. This is especially the case when lighting high-end photography. Photographs have glossy surfaces and are often enclosed in glass frames. The best lighting angle for these forms of art is generally from a recessed position or track lighting installation. This causes the majority of reflected light to angle downward to the floor.

Invest in Low Voltage Equipment.
Low voltage fixtures more often than not provide the best lighting for artwork in museums and galleries. This is because of to several reasons. The first is cost. Low voltage lights consume far less power and can be left on for longer periods of time without exorbitant electricity bills. Low voltage lights also produce a less glaring luminance that is more radiant and ambient. It very difficult to achieve soft picture lighting or lighted from within special effects with line voltage equipment simply because there is too much luminance output striking the piece.

Finally, low-voltage lights are lower wattage and operate at lower temperatures than line voltage lights. This is another reason low-voltage fixtures tend typically produce the best lighting for art because they emit little if any forward throw heat that can dry out paints and cause them to crack over time.

Dimmable Fixtures Give You Greater Lighting Control.
Dimmable fixtures are generally the best art light to use in any display or exhibition. Each work of art is unique and conveys its own message through a subtle interplay of colors and the contrast between light and shadow. A fixed beam of bright light will either overemphasize light or dark elements or certain colors, or, even worse, throw reflected light back into the eyes. Dimmable accent lighting fixtures give you ultimate control over luminance levels so you can achieve the best results when lighting your art. Dimmer controls should always be easy to operate and allow you to make quick adjustments.

Make certain you invest in UV-filters or fixtures designed to filter UV light.
UV radiation is even more deadly to artwork than it is to human skin. It must be eliminated from any source of lighting, or your best art will soon deteriorate and be permanently lost to time. Almost all artwork lighting fixtures are equipped with some sort of mechanism to minimize UV output. However, the best art in your collection cannot afford any exposure to UV light and require the most sophisticated filtration technology possible to protect their integrity and beauty.

Phantom Contour Art Projectors Combine All of These Characteristics Into a Single Design.
Phantom projectors embody all the attributes that characterize the world’s best lights for art. They are low profile, low voltage light sources that conserve power, are extremely cost effective, and easy to angle and adjust. A Contour Projector install on the ceiling can be adjusted to fit the dimensions of a painting, photograph, or sculpture and produce illumination that appears to be more like an “aura” around the piece than a beam of light shooting toward it. We call this “the lighted from within” effect.

Phantom optical projector lights are simple to use and allow you to dim or raise lighting levels at will. The proprietary optical lens design also allows you to fit the beam to the dimensions of any work of art on display. Few people who visit your collection will ever see a Phantom projector, however, because it is smaller than competing models and hides itself either in or on the ceiling to angle an invisible beam of light downward onto the artwork which becomes visible only when it strikes the surface.

Most importantly, Phantom Contour projectors feature patented, sophisticated UV filters that completely strip the light of all ultraviolet radiation so it can safely light your best art with no negative effects resulting. Everyone from private collectors, commercial clients, and professional galleries can benefit from a Phantom Contour Projector, and they can also choose from any of six models that are specifically designed for different environments. A Phantom lighting agent can help you determine which model will work best for your art lighting needs.

A Toll-Free call to 1-800-863-1184 will connect you now with customer service to schedule a free consultation. We invite you to view our client image gallery or visit our art lighting blog.

True Picture Lighting Illuminates The Picture And The Frame Without Glare Or Shadow And Without Revealing The Source

Why are over the picture lights a less than ideal source of art lighting?

Picture lights rely on halogen and incandescent lamps that produce infrared light. This results in very high temperatures that will dry out oils and crack canvases over time. Museums that still use incandescent picture frame lighting must install special motion sensors to turn the lights on when visitors enter the room and switch them off again when they leave. This is too much hassle for the private collector, and it is also more expensive.

Can the actual intensity of light cause paintings to degrade?

Yes it can. The term “Lumens per annum” refers to the cumulative intensity of museum art lighting over long periods of exposure that can have deleterious effects on colors and canvases. Setting precise levels of illumination intensity for recessed picture lights helps safeguard the preservation of pictures, paintings, and rare documents framed in museums. This is difficult to do with picture lighting equipment that offers only two or three settings and little, if any, room for custom adjustment to the piece.

What is the best alternative, then, to standard over the picture lighting?

Both private collectors and gallery curators almost unanimously agree that the vest best and safest sources of picture lighting are commercial grade art projectors. Art projector lights offer the advantages of ultraviolet and infrared filtering and do not mount to the frame. This is crucial to museum aesthetic, where classics look much better when there is nothing over the painting to distract the viewer’s eye. However, typical art projectors can be very bulky, hard to adjust, and cause severe damage to ceilings even when installed by professionals. It is also very hard to adjust lighting levels in some projectors, making it difficult to match lighting intensity precisely to color and form. Some projectors also produce a beam that is visible to people standing to the side of the room. This does not look good in a refined setting and therefore offers serious drawbacks that disqualify such a device as an ideal source of picture lighting.

Does the Phantom Contour Projector Truly Resolve All of These Issues?

As artwork lighting experts, Phantom Lighting took projector technology to a whole new level by introducing the Phantom Contour Projector. Our foremost concern in this new design was developing the highest level of protection for priceless works of art. While most art projectors provide some form of UV shielding, we have developed fixtures and precision optical design that negate its power altogether. We have accomplished this without diminishing the ability to fine tune the projector for optimal picture lighting angles and light intensity levels.

The name Phantom Contour itself refers to one of the most unique attributes of our art projectors—the ability to shape illumination to the exact dimensions of a picture. Phantom lenses offer the highest level of photometric performance currently possible as compared to other framing projectors. They can be fine tuned with such precision as to actually hide the beam of light itself regardless of viewing angles. This creates a “lighting from within” effect when the beam strikes the picture and frame. This light is further filtered through special glare shielding that prevents it from “spilling” over the wall around a painting and thus eliminates resulting shadows behind the frame.

To learn more about Phantom Contour Projectors visit our lighting blog or contact a lighting rep in your area.

Will The Phantom Contour Projector Effectively Light Art From Across The Room?

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I am an art consultant in Southern California who is familiar with projection lighting by other companies. I saw your lighting fixtures at Light Fair 2005 in New York and have wanted to use them ever since learned about them. I finally have an art lighting application that requires a very special fixture. The room is two stories tall, glass on both sides and does not have attic access. Can the Phantom Contour Projector shoot across the room and still frame the art?

Yes it can! The Phantom Contour Projector produces a focused light source and the lenses can be changed to accommodate a long narrow throw of light. Likewise, you can change the lenses to illuminate a large painting by expanding the beam pattern, without loosing the ability to set the focus.

We recently photographed an installation in Texas that is very similar to what you are describing. The above images show both a daytime and nighttime shot of the room. In this application, one Phantom Contour Projector was used to illuminate the large contemporary painting mounted vertically above the fireplace. The Phantom projector was mounted on the opposite wall, inside the coat closet next to the front door and penetrated the wall roughly 8′ up from the floor and the light projects some 30′ across the room with dramatic results. The small wall penetration was only 1 1/2″ in diameter and can hardly be seen from anywhere in the room. The installer used a custom template to mask the light from hitting the wall, creating a floating effect. It’s like the painting is “Lighted from within” and the soft colors of the art can be seen in detail, as the artist intended.

Phantom lighting systems manufactures specialty lighting fixtures such as the Contour Projector for art lighting and Phantom light strips for display lighting. For more information or to request a color brochure contact Tom Kretzschmar toll free at 800-863-1184. Every application is different, so just give us a call and we will help you engineer an quality lighting solution. Check out our gallery for images of other exciting installations.

Compare the Phantom Contour Projector light to other optical framing projector lighting.

I am considering installing some new recessed art lighting fixtures in my home. The idea of a remodel housing and trim is very intriguing to me. How does your light fixture compare with other art lights on the market?

When you are talking about art lighting fixtures, you really have to break them down into three categories: Picture lights, accent lights and framing projectors.

Picture Lights
Surface mounted picture lights are the simplest form on art lighting used by galleries, consultants and homeowners. Picture lights are attached to the frame or wall and cords are either exposed or concealed behind the frame depending on the location of the receptacle. The picture light floods the art and produces heat that may be harmful to works of art. They are available in several styles and lengths to fit most art. Costs for this form of lighting is minimal.

Accent Lighting
Recessed accent light fixtures, typically MR16 fixtures, can be quite effective for illuminating art. The small aperture and high output of these lights makes them a favorite in both commercial and residential settings. The low voltage halogen light produces a good color and can be controlled to spot light or flood an object with light. MR16 lamps because of their dichroic reflectors are “Cool Beam” lamps and do not create harmful UV or infrared rays that damage art. Accent lights come in many shapes and sizes and are made by many manufacturers. Cost for this form of lighting is moderate.

Framing Projectors
Recessed optical framing projectors are by far the most dramatic and effective way to illuminate art or sculpture. Optical framing projectors produce a very high intensity focused light that can be manipulated to fit the exact contour of the object. Only a few companies promote optical framing projectors because they are so specialized and tedious to install. Some companies make simple framing projectors that must conform to a rigid formula and can only do square or rectangular art, masking the light with shutters. Others, are more complex and require a trained technician to hand cut templates masking the light to any shape. Costs for this form of lighting pictures can be high and does vary by manufacturer.

Phantom Contour Projectors are designed by a professional installer and have been engineered so a novice, do it yourselfer or qualified electrician can successfully illuminate art. The patented mounting method, simplified optical system and the ability to use both shutters and custom templates make this one of the most versatile and awesome fixtures on the market today. By shaping the light to only the canvas, the art takes on a “Lighted from within” look that can only be seen to appreciate.

Our lighting manufacturing plant is located in Houston, Texas with professional lighting sales agents located throughout the United States that enable us to service all 50 states including Washington DC, Nashville Tennessee, Reno Nevada. Portland Oregon, Oklahoma City Oklahoma, Tucson Arizona, Los Angeles California, Atlanta Georgia, and Malibu California.

See our Projector comparison chart to see how we stack up against the competition in this highly specialized niche market. Feel free to contact us toll free at 800-863-1184 for design assistance, technical information or to request a free color brochure.

You’ll be glad you did!

Selecting the right housing for your Phantom Contour Projector light

I am interested in purchasing several of your Phantom Contour Projectors. However, I am confused by all the different housings that you offer. Which recessed model do I need for a clean ceiling appearance?

Thank you for your interest in our Phantom lighting projector. I am more than happy to discuss the various housings we offer and assist you in ordering the right fine art lighting equipment.

Basically, we have four different Phantom Contour Projector housings:

RM Series
The remodel housing is designed for adding the projector light without damage to the ceiling. For example, you can replace an old eyeball fixture or accent light with one of these housings. You simple enlarge the existing hole, remove the old recessed lighting fixture and install the new Phantom remodel housing. The remodel housing has a discrete round white ceiling plate with a 1/8″ tapered beveled edge.

FF Series
The float finish housing is designed for the most attractive and discrete ceiling appearance. The 1/8″ machined flange is securely attached to the ceiling during installation and then floated and textured and painted to match the ceiling. These trims can be wallpaper, faux painted or fabricated to match the ceiling finish.

TA Series
The top access housing is designed for commercial jobs or residences where is in not practical to install or service the light. This housing eliminates the need for scaffolding or man lifts to access the equipment. A special elongated trim is provided with the housing to finish off the ceiling penetration. Although convenient for tall ceilings, this particular housing is the most challenging when it comes to adjusting the projector.

NC Series
The new construction housing is designed for new work and old work if attic access is available. The housing comes with heavy duty fixture bars for installation during the framing stage. Just like the remodel housing the NC Series has the same discrete round white ceiling plate with a 1/8″ tapered beveled edge.

The float finish housing is by far the most attractive and least obvious of the ceiling trims. If you go with the new construction housing or the remodeler housing, the ceiling plates look the same should you decide to add more in the future. Some people are funny about seeing ceiling plates and they tolerate speakers, smoke detectors and sprinkler heads. Ultimately, the decision is up to you. If it were my house, the FF Series is the way I would go.

For more information or to request a color brochure please visit our website http://www.phantomlighting.com/ or call us toll free 800-863-1184.

Our lighting manufacturing facility is located in Houston, Texas with professional lighting sales agents located throughout the United States that enable us to service all 50 states including Washington DC, Nashville Tennessee, Las Vegas Nevada. Portland Oregon, Oklahoma City Oklahoma, Tucson Arizona, Long Beach California, Atlanta Georgia, and Los Angeles California.