Text: ‘ideas en luz’, Victor Palacio
Photos: ‘ideas en luz’, Victor Palacio

05. May 2012

Passion for lighting
Lighting Design – a profession for passionate people

Any time two or more lighting designers come together they immediately share a very deep emotion: PASSION. Passion is the ‘glue’ that holds together architects, engineers, designers, artists, technicians, theater professionals, urban planners, conceptualists and many other people engaged in the same activity: LIGHTING. Lighting is frequently described as a mix of art and science. It is thus understood that a good lighting designer will develop creative solutions based on solid technical methodology. Additionally, lighting creates benefits to people and quality lighting can reduce the impact of energy use on the environment. Nevertheless, a definition of lighting design still remains to be formulated in such a way that colleagues are in agreement with it and all those who work with lighting designers fully understand it. The definition to date is generally related to the process pursued by designers as well as to their abilities, skills and the final outcomes of their work.

Professional associations are working on the definition of the profession. PLDA has recently reviewed the “Declaration of the Official Establishment of the Architectural Lighting Design Profession” introduced during the first PLDC in London in 2007. For its part, IALD is conducting a professional feasibility study on the development of a credentialing program for lighting designers. The IALD study is going deep into the analysis of lighting quality and the identification of the core values of the profession. Other groups and local associations are concerned as well about defining the attributes and scope of work of lighting designers. A relevant fact is that the brand new 10th Edition of the IES Handbook has been reoriented including lighting design as one of the three chapters of the book bringing a fresh and updated approach for users. That said, there is no ‘official’ recognition of lighting designers yet. It seems that defining the profession and acknowledging it will take some time until there is a consensus about what lighting designers do that nobody else does, and who has the credentials to use this title. But there is also some degree of contradiction: we all can identify who lighting designers are! […]

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The full version of the article can be found in PLD No. 83.

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