Downlighting Vs. Uplighting:Where and When to use Them
The terms downlighting and uplighting are pretty self explanatory, downlighting refers to a light beaming down from the top, meanwhile uplighting is the light beaming up from a fixture on or close to the ground. Whether one is better than the other is entirely dependent on which area of your home you are trying to light.
Uplighting is primarily utilized in the outside spaces of a house, fixtures attached near the base of an object and facing upwards can create a sense that dawn is breaking, even if it’s in the dead of night. Indoor usage of uplighting is usually geared towards accentuating a certain feature. Furthermore uplighting, specifically outdoors is also great for creating a border around the perimeter thus giving the garden space a more cozy feel.
Moving over to downlighting, most lights utilized indoors are downlights, whether it’s the traditional ceiling light, track lights, or pendant lights, indoor lighting fixtures tend to beam from the top down. Cove lighting could be considered somewhere in between, as the beam is technically pointing upwards, however the fixture is suspended on the ceiling.
Downlighting however does have its uses outdoors as well, if the space is big enough to support pathways, downlights can be used to illuminate the pathways and create a moonlight effect. Not to mention outdoor dining areas, and any task oriented space that is located outdoors.
As a rule of thumb, it is safe to say that uplighting is primarily used outdoors while downlighting is used indoors. However that isn’t always the case, and specific features indoors and outdoors can benefit from each respective lighting type. Being armed with this knowledge will give you another dimension of lights to play around with when it comes to designing your home lighting.