The Power Of Color – Lighting Design

The Power Of Color With The Custom Lighting Design.

Since very early times, the wonder of color has played an important role in the human approach to the exterior experience of the world. In nature, color is considered a key
characteristic. Its main reference is however to the aesthetics of the outside appearance of things, not to the visible expression of their substance because Western culture
relates substance to shape and it conceives measurement, meaning the geometry, as one of the most effective instruments in the knowledge of the physical world.

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As an architectural interior designer, who designed commercial residential and major hospitality projects, I realized from the beginning of my career that the
right exposure of the visual stimulations of the interior environment played a major impact to the success of the overall result.

But nothing was looking as good as it was in my rendering computer screen when I was delivering my project. The need for a custom lighting designer
to illuminate correctly my work was imperative.
I was so excited watching how a calculated lighting scenario could change the overall result of my work that soon after I found myself studying mathematical lighting
calculations and lighting design techniques and I turned to be a very passionate lighting design specialist. I am studying something new every day because lighting
design is an engineering science with endless abilities and applications. It’s a science that needs discipline patience and much intelligence. Every project is a new adventure.
Every project is a new challenge. The great result is beneficial for the owner of the project as much as it is for the architectural and interior design team. Adds VALUE to the project.
The great result has to do with how well the colors of the interior design materials and visual stimulations are perceived from the eyes of the guests.

Lighting design is partly a mathematical process and partly a series of assumptions based on the needs of the user.

Among those calculations, one that plays a major impact on the final result is the method for evaluating the light source color rendition.

Since 2015 the IES ILLUMINATING ENGINEERING SOCIETY replaced the CRI calculations with the CQS color quality scale and the new method is the TM-30-15.



Color rending metrics assign a rating to light sources using pre-defined test color samples. These metrics are designed to compare a sources’ ability to accurately render color.

In 1974 the CRI standard that we use today gave us our color rendition standard. Today TM-30-15 is a new method to evaluate color rendition; it includes several measures and graphics to evaluate the Fidelity (Rf) and Gamut (Rg) of a source when compared to a reference light source – a tungsten halogen source. Unlike the Color Rendering Index (CRI) which only considers the average accuracy Of 8 colors while TM-30-15 requires comparison against 99 color samples.
That means TM-30 widens the comparative color samples and offers a more comprehensive way to evaluate overall rendition of 99 color samples.

CRI VS TM-30-15

The Fidelity Index of TM-30 uses the average value of 99 color samples; CRI, however, only uses 8 to generate the Ra value. Why does this matter? Well, there are more than 8 colors within the visible spectrum, so using such a limited sample set to try and describe color rendering performance means that the reproduction of a subject’s visual appearance may vary significantly under the artificial source when compared to natural daylight. An Rf value of 100 means that the test source renders the color samples in exactly the same way as the reference source and therefore is very close to natural daylight.



The color Gamut Index, or Rg, represents the average saturation shift of the source compared to the reference illuminant. Values greater than 100 can be visualized as an increase in average saturation, whereas values less than 100 represent a decrease. Find great examples of manipulating the Gamut with ALPHABET Vibrancy or Beauty CCT. Vibrancy Series makes objects look more vivid. Imagine the first time you saw a HDTV. Whites, reds and blues pop and become rich and saturated. See Vector index below for an illustration.

TM-30-15 values, are much harder to selectively optimize. Given that they were created using a great number of test samples that span the entire color spectrum. Moreover, TM-30-15 uses advanced calculation methods to measure more dimensions of color, including the direction of color shifts, changes in chroma, and information about specific hue regions. It also offers ways to measure human preference and color discrimination potential. With two main numerical parameters (color fidelity and color gamut) and other visualization tools (such as a color distortion icon), this new system provides a better understanding of the rendition of specific hues and a complete picture of color rendition than a fidelity metric alone.

As slatted above, TM-30-15 has been found to 1) accurately represent real objects which uniformly span color space, 2) grant equal value to all visible wavelengths, and 3) deliver more precise measurements. These results give us confidence that the new metric will provide more useful predictions of color appearance in various lighting situations, and it will serve as a more helpful guide for the optimization of future light sources

I never excluded from my measurements the CRI. I am also measuring constantly with all the available lighting meters photographers and film-makers are using, to see where I am standing during the lighting installation in the construction area.
I really want the best overall result in my projects. But what is the best? It is the lighting that illuminates the task for safety and good productivity, creates a bright and pleasant interior, avoids visual discomfort throught glare and flicker and uses energy wisely.
Good Lighting also requires good maintenance to ensure quality throught the life of the installation.

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