Artificial VS. Sunlight

Here comes the sun, little darling, here comes the sun, and I say its alright 

Daylighting= lighting a space using natural light via windows and skylights

The Cons of Sunlight

  • Glare-The sun can be very distracting when it creates a glare. Glare on desks in classrooms, and on computer screens has been shown to negatively affect productivity.
  • Cancer– The UV rays of the sun can damage skin, and fade fabrics and artwork. 
  • Darkness- Windows that offered beautiful scenic views during the day, become empty black holes during the night. 
  • Seasons– You have a lack of control. Natural light varies greatly. Your office suddenly becomes very dreary on an overcast week.

Pros of Sunlight

  • Energy Savings– Any sustainable lighting design must utilize natural lighting. Using sunlight will cut down your energy bill.
  • High quality task light– No artificial light can match the sun for reading and writing.
  • Even distribution– Artificial lighting has a field of focus, whereas sunlight can evenly light a space.
  • Views– Windows and skylights can offer beautiful scenic views
  • Happiness– Create a happy space through sunlight! Sunlight triggers the release of serotonin, and the creation of Vitamin D!

Balancing the Two

We love sunlight, but tend to prefer the control that artificial lighting allows. Definitely for spaces like the worship hall of a church, you would want to limit or completely block out natural lighting. This has to do with the fact that sunlight is very evenly distributed, and you would want to direct focus through stage lighting. Same goes for a concert or theatre, where you can get a lot more punch out of your effect lights when you have a dimmer space. Yet, every venue could benefit from daylighting in lobbies, hallways, classrooms, and places of congregation. 

Having Warm House lighting could definitely help contribute to creating a comfortable space, but still be sure to get some time in the sun!

Thanks for Reading! 

-lyrics from The Beatles 

-facts from Mayo Clinic

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