Layering in terms of lighting is used when multiple lights in one room build up to lighting up the room overall. Different items in the room could be used for lighting such as shelves, curtains, tables and walls which all build on each other to light the whole room up, rather than depending on one light such as a table lamp to light up the room.
Layering lights can be done in different ways, all as efficient as each other in drawing the eye to different parts. The way the lights would be set up depend on the room, a living room may have more lights set up to light up the whole area whereas a bathroom may have more subtle lights and not be as bright. In a living room, there could be spotlights facing down on any tables and chairs to give them more attention. This would be essential as it would be the central light and it would be the first thing people’s eyes catch onto. Any curtains or blinds in the room could be lit subtly using downlights, which would emphasise the texture of the object and the detail that is has. Uplights could be used on any shelves that may be there to subtly highlight the object that’s on there, which could be books or any art that the shelf could be showing.
In a bathroom or kitchen, the lighting could be more subtle and not as bright to make this area look more pleasing. With layering, lighting can be changed to become lighter or darker based on the person’s needs, so if they want the kitchen brighter then more spotlights could be used to highlight the surfaces, or more lamps can be used around the area, vice versa for if you want it darker, less spotlights could be used and more up and downlights can create a darker environment. It also depends on the walls of the room as a glossier wall will reflect the lights onto other surfaces, which could make the room brighter than usual, a wall that’s more matte will keep the light where it needs to be.
In lighting, layering is very important as it builds up the overall brightness of the room and can really change how it looks. A central light is essential as it is almost a foundation to layering. It will be the first thing the eye would look at, so where it points to is just as important. There are many other options of lights which are effective in layering such as uplights and downlights for subtleness and lights such as table lamps which will be effective in highlighting a certain table or furniture and bringing the eye towards it.