There are many lighting design books that you should read and learn from, but we couldn’t fit them all into a standard list of Top 10 lighting design books. Grab your reading glasses and take some notes. These books contain all the knowledge you need to acquire about lighting design. Whether you were a student, a lighting designer, or a homeowner, you’ll love reading these books.
It is not exactly a book for beginners, don’t let the word “Basics” in the title fool you.
An advanced text on the subject and covers all the basics. It is the top book if you want to test the waters before fully committing to lighting design as a disciple. It is definitely worth the investment because it will give you a satisfactory outline of the subject.
Mark Karlen the author of the book along with Christina Spangler and James R. Beyna mix an academic approach with practical experience, this book is a perfect balance. No jargon or terminology, just lighting design in clear, simple language. It features many useful diagrams and examines several lighting projects. You will also find a few exercises if you were preparing for exams.
All in all, this book is an excellent foundational text that everyone interested in the subject should read. If you must have one lighting design book, this is it.
Light design is a big part of Interior Architecture. Every interior designer uses light for different purposes, but technicality often gets in the way of clearly understanding the subject. Not with this book.
The book has two parts. Part One, Theory, explores the physical nature of light as well as how light technology works. Part Two, Process and Practice, take a more in-depth look at how lighting and interior design overlap as well as showcasing critical design issues and principles.
The book details various ways of designing lighting layouts using CAD and 3D models, and even how to install and test them. Last but not least, the book reveals how to work with contractors, clients, and other professionals in the field.
The book will prove useful for those who are looking for a complete guide to lighting in interior design.
Authored by Malcolm Innes, a lighting designer and university professor who travels the world to teach lighting design.
It is a book that has more profound implications than any book above, combining different schools of thoughts when it comes to teaching lighting and design. The author holds nothing back covering topics such as environmentally friendly design, lighting systems, and design development.
The appendix of the book alone contains a wealth of information about lighting makers, organisations and agencies, and LEED building certification program. The publisher is also giving access to an online tool that helps students get the most out their book studies.
Author Susan M. Winchip, a professor of Interior and Environmental Design at Illinois State University. She designed residential and commercial interiors with a focus on lighting and sustainability.
Author: Marcus Steffen.
The book proposes that light design is not merely lighting a space, and then goes on to explain how to make maximum use of empty areas. The author based the book on the premise that good lighting is inseparable from residential buildings.
It provides the necessary tools to lighting designers and explains in full detail how to create the best lighting design for a home. Furthermore, it clarifies the nature of light and how to implement lamps and light fittings for maximum effect. For example, it provides such an excellent illustration of how to create a unique atmosphere through contrasting lights and shadows.
Additionally, it tours each room of the house providing a thorough analysis of good lighting design and best practices, plus a summary of the most common mistakes that beginner designers make. Residential Lighting Design gives a clear explanation of the powers of light and how to implement them to illuminate a home creating a beautiful space.
Richard Pilbrow is a recognised authority on stage lighting and has been a practitioner since forever. The first edition of this book opened the door for many aspiring lighting designers to a real understanding of the subject.
The latest edition is even more important for anybody who is serious about lighting design. Complete with updated material, Stage Lighting Design contains interviews with renowned light designers from everywhere.
When you need a reliable resource for lighting design, you must have this book in your library.
You can practice the principles in this book on any lighting design project, not just theatres and TV. It is a book that also helps you look into life as a lighting designer.
Since its first release in 2003, this book has been an essential reference for professional designers. In this revised edition the author painstakingly breaks up the core principles of lighting design in small, digestible bites.
With the accelerating development in design, this fifth edition introducing new topics including LED installation, energy efficiency, and the OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diodes).
Into the bargain, it offers in-depth information for drawing ceiling floor plans and the powerful applications of designs in various interior configurations. A cornerstone material for the Lighting Certified exam, few books reach the depth and knowledge this book offers to beginners in lighting design. Simply put, this book sets lighting in its rightful place in the order of interior design. Gary Gordon, the author, is a prolific architect and lighting designer.
Architectural Lighting is part of the Architecture Briefs series. In this book, the reader will find an analysis of lighting and its applications in the built environment. There are detailed descriptions and instructional diagrams which serve to illuminate fundamental concepts in lighting design.
Included in the book six case studies as real-life examples of the principles were applied. Furthermore, architect Steven Holl contributed short essays, artist Sylvain Dubuisson and landscape architect James Corner deliver excellent analysis of the role of lighting in outlining spatial compositions.
If you want to see the brilliance of well carried out lighting design, this book is for you. It’s an excellent source of inspiration whether you’re looking for something extravagant or modest.
It’s a book of pictures with adequate descriptions of what’s going on in the illustrations. Just stunning visuals that reveals how dreamlike lighting design can be.
Bentley Meeker is not an average lighting designer by any means. For two decades, he lit a few significant events including the wedding of Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.
At the very least, this book is the ultimate coffee table book with its spectacularly beautiful visuals.
Author: Jill Entwistle
Lighting is an essential part of interior design, and so far, all of the books on this list including this one treated all aspects of lighting design. This book contains more than 40 international projects that were done recently with lighting design as the main feature.
For large projects, the owners usually hire a professional lighting designer, but for small ones, it will be the responsibility of the architect or interior designer to design and execute the lighting scheme. However, a certain level of understanding must be present to how much light is available and how to make the most out of it.
Full details are available about each project including plans, diagrams, sketches and CAD visuals all geared towards the application of the lighting techniques in the book. Also after Every lighting project a descriptive text that takes into consideration things like the original brief, the design concept and the specs of the light fittings. The book is accompanied by a bonus CD with the technical drawings. In short, this book is a good friend for professional interior designers and architects in a fast-evolving field.
Author: Jason Livingston
It is a book that provides a comprehensive set of tools to use lighting to carve and amplify a space. The book takes you by hand through every step from aesthetics, technology, to practicalities.
The reader will find clear, straight to the point, and concise knowledge of lighting design. Each principle is demonstrated by a colour illustration to reveal the effects of the physical environment. The companion website provides additional video animations and exercises to illustrate the principles of lighting better.
The book also gives potential problems and their solution, it should be a part of every designer’s toolkit. The book also covers psychological effects of lighting, how the human perceives light, future light technologies, and other current trends.
No other book is better to conclude this top 10 lighting design books list of best lighting design books than this one.