Outdoor lighting design depends on your goals. Outdoor lighting for homes generally serves one or a combination of three main purposes:
- Aesthetics : illuminate the outdoors and enhance the visual landscape.
- Security : illuminate the grounds near the house or driveway.
- Utility : illuminate the porch and driveway to help people navigate safely to and from the house.
For an ideal landscape lighting do not go overboard with outdoor lights, choose environmentally friendly outdoor lighting systems and low voltage outdoor lighting.
Begin your work “landscape lighting design” by drawing a map of your home and the surrounding driveways, walkways, steps, gardens and main trees. With that map, do the following:
- Mark the main activity centers and the main focal points: entrances, fountains, trees. Do not select too many focal points, just one or two is usually enough
- Mark the points that should be illuminated: driveways, walkways, steps, decks.
The map can also help you to determine the position of lighting fixtures and the power sources.
Do not over your outdoor lighting. Too much light is pollution. Bright lighting should only be on some very important landscape area, are used to achieve the goals of safety and utility (pathway).
Do not turn your landscape into a birthday cake with plenty of candles, and consider your neighbors privacy and rights (use low-voltage lighting or solar lighting).