I went lightseeing

I enjoy sightseeing. My family and I have been privileged to see many wonderful natural and cultural sights in the United States from New York City's Grand Central Station to Yosemite's Half Dome. Today I am by myself on a rare international business trip to Spain, and the miracle of modern air travel granted me... Continue Reading →

Lighting Lies

I was thumbing through the latest issue of This Old House last night and stopped cold at a beautiful advertisement for a lighting company.  "Good Lighting is Everything," it said.  That may be a stretch, but I'll take it.  And then I got just a bit angry (with apologies to my wife for the outburst)... Continue Reading →

Plumbers Doing Lighting

You've got the wrong professional. A long time ago I spent several years as a full-time construction supervisor responsible for training volunteer crews and building new homes from the ground up with Habitat for Humanity in Mississippi.  I learned how to pour slab foundations, rough in plumbing, wire a breaker panel, install cabinets, put on... Continue Reading →

Electric Cars and LEDs

Here's the scenario: you finally decide to trade in your car for new one, and make the decision to go electric. You're thinking you'll get a Tesla: high tech, fast, beautiful and long range.  But without knowing it, you bought a golf cart.  It's electric, like a Tesla.  What's the difference? "We're getting LEDs." When... Continue Reading →

Vinyl SLighting

The locally quarried stone and stained concrete shapes that make up Frank Lloyd Wright's iconic Fallingwater are key ingredients of its success, but the maintenance is expensive.  Natural stone needs care and mortar; concrete cracks and spalls.  So last year the Foundation that oversees Fallingwater made the sensible choice to reduce maintenance costs. They covered the house in... Continue Reading →

The Best & Worst Light Bulb

I finally found it: a light bulb that performs just like the beloved 60-watt incandescent. And I am very, very unhappy.  Angry. Because this pack of bulbs costs me $4 to buy but will lock me in to spending an extra $300 over the next decade.  And that's not the only downside.  Let me explain. I... Continue Reading →

Lighting isn’t brain surgery…?

I frequently hear myself saying that lighting is not brain surgery, that getting it right just requires the attention of a dedicated experienced professional. I might be wrong. (Not literally.  I could never do brain surgery because I would pass out as soon as the knife dug in.  I'm getting faint just thinking about it.... Continue Reading →

Change is the Only Constant

I am as guilty as the next lighting designer.  See my design above for proof. Once upon a time, light indoors depended on light through windows or flames from candles, lamps and fires.  The windows were automatically scheduled to turn on slowly in the morning and turn off slowly in the evening.  They changed intensity... Continue Reading →

Sorry, Mom.

My mother has carefully and meticulously curated a style for the family farmhouse over the past 45 years of residency (we've had the farm since about 1882, but none of us remember that). In the 1970's and 80's when I was growing up it was, well, very 1970's.  Then, when we finally all went off... Continue Reading →

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