It’s very hard to find a person that doesn’t appreciate a beautiful backyard. The biggest mistake most of us make when trying to create one, though, is putting the sign of equality between beautiful backyard and landscaping. The limits of this idea can be seen as soon as the sun sets. Now, a clever lighting setup would not only make the yard clearer but also spice up the environment with a healthy dose of starlight magic.
Let's take a look at a couple of tips that should help you achieve these results in the most intuitive and practical manner.
Layer the lighting
As of recently, layered lighting has become a very popular solution for making the interior space look more stylish and dynamic. There is no good reason why you shouldn't take this concept outside. What should you do then? It's simple – just spit the outdoor lights into three groups:
Ambient light – Somewhat dim, it sets and mood and creates the backdrop
Task lighting – As the name suggests, this group casts light on frequently used pathways and areas
Accent lights – The strongest group that shifts the focus on the items and areas you want to display to spectators
Do the math
Or in other words, make sure the setup is financially viable. Otherwise, the magical play of light won’t feel so magical when the bills arrive. So, for a start, draw the layout, find out how much space different lights cover and draw a setup that won’t feature excessive wattage. Also, consider using different types of fixtures for different purposes. Economical CFL and LED bulbs should fill in the role of the strongest accent lights. As for the ambient lights, it can be pulled off with affordable solar lights.
Since electricity, wind, and rain rarely make a smart combination, you should make an extra effort to make the whole thing safe. Meaning, insulate the critical spots and keep the cables in underground tubes. Still, in this case, it would be the best idea to ask for professional help. Take for example Australia, a windy country that sees a fair share of monsoons and thunderstorms. If you're living, for instance, in its unofficial capital, you should probably look for an experienced electrician in Western Suburbs to help you with securing the setup.
Think about color temperature
Most of the outdoor light setups don’t only serve a practical purpose – they also need to elevate the space and set a certain mood. Keeping that in mind, not every color temperature fits equally well every type of setting. For instance, modern backyards that feature a lot of straight lines and solid colors will look the best when lit in colder tones. On the other hand, such light will completely wash out the color green from your trees and shrubs. In this case, a more natural 4100K light would do a much better job.
Make the setup adjustable
This move will prove to be useful for a number of reasons. First, some nights require more artificial light than others. Second, there are the seasonal needs. Bare branches don’t need such a dramatic highlighting as trees full of leaves – well, at least if you don’t want to create a spooky Halloween feel. Because of the strong reflection, snow requires outdoor lights to be even dimmer. So, find a way to make the setup adjustable or to turn on individual fixtures separately.
Play with shadows
Putting the light trough some kind of patterned obstacle can create truly amazing visual effects and make the space look far more dynamic. So, consider lighting the backyard through branches, from behind the fence, or through some other hollow objects. If you are not willing to experiment, even ordinary lamps that are placed into wicker or knitted cages can produce some sense of variety and lend the setup necessary texture.
We hope these tips will help you to cast proper light on your backyard and help its beauty shine through even when the sun goes down. All you need to do now is get the pen and the paper, unleash your inner designer and start working on your ideas. Try to be as creative as you can. Sure, you can go to the store and buy an entire kit ready for assembly. But where's the magic in that?