Your Home Office is an important space!
The lighting in your home is an important consideration but the lighting in your home office is possibly even more important! With the advent of Wi-Fi, it’s now the norm to have your devices, laptops, tablets and smartphones connected to the internet anywhere in the house. The growth of this technology allows every member of the family to have an internet connection anywhere in the house, whenever they want it.
That being said, over the last 5 years there has been an unprecedented rise in the number of people being registered as self employed. This could be working from home full time, selling on Ebay or taking on some extra freelance work. This being the case, having a dedicated home office space is still a necessity despite the ability take your internet connection with you wherever you go in the house.
One important and easily overlooked aspect of setting up a home workspace is how to light it properly. While working from home can seem relaxing, some may appreciate a few tips to make their home office feel less homely and more business like to focus the mind. A few simple changes to the lighting of the area can have a massive difference to making your home office feel less like home.
Around most of the home you’ll have warm white light bulbs giving off light around 3000 Kelvin (k) on the colour temperature scale, warm white is perfect light to help you relax and unwind. The best option for a work area would be to opt for a light bulb that has a cool white colour temperature over 5000k, cool white light directly impacts your learning ability and productivity as it wakes up your brain making you better able to take in new information and focus on the task in hand. A good rule of thumb; the higher the colour temperature, the easier you will find it to focus and work.
Natural daylight at midday is around 5000k, it’s good for raising your mood, attention levels and feeling healthy. It’s best to have your home office space near a window to let in as much natural light around peak daylight hours.
Consider the lighting of your workspace to be in 3 sections, Ambient, Accent and Task. This is essential to allow you to focus on your work and not get distracted by not being able to see your working area when the sun sets because the only light in the room is a ceiling light right behind you leaving you casting a shadow over your work area.
This is a general lighting section, traditional ceiling lights or flush ceiling lights will provide lighting for the entire area. This is the bare minimum, very uniform and boring, which is why Accent and Task lighting is important.
This is what you’d consider the decorative lighting section, its role is to highlight points of interest in your interior that aren’t made prominent with ambient lighting. Fixtures for accent lighting can include plinth lights to highlight kick boards, LED strips, spotlights and wall lights.
This is the final and most important section of the lighting design. When choosing your task lighting you should consider what it’s being used for, if you’re working at a desk, a table lamp or if you’re working in a kitchen, a rigid LED strip mounted under your kitchen unit would provide a perfect task lighting source. For something more elaborate like painting on a canvas or working at a workbench a floor lamp or a pendant light above the work area could be a perfect solution.
So to recap, firstly you want an appropriate colour temperature of around 5000k to make sure you’re awake and focused. Ideally you should position your work area near to a window to let in as much natural light as possible.
Secondly, make sure you get your three layers of lighting fixtures right, following these simple, inexpensive tips can create a great boost to your productivity and learning while working from home.
Finally, it’s important to keep in mind you don’t need to use 3 different lighting fixtures for the three sections of lighting, as an example a well positioned set of downlights can be used as ambient and accent lighting quite easily also a well positioned pendant light or floor lamp can form a good accent and task light really well.