Tips and Suggestions for Illuminating Your Remote Office
These strange times find many of us suddenly working from home for longer hours than ever before. In numerous houses the new full-time office consists of an ad hoc room take over, be it dining room table, living room couch, or spare bedroom. In these hastily converted spaces, we develop productive and comfortable setups as best possible. As our requirement to maintain social distancing shows no end questions naturally arise to how our home office environments can be improved.
As an architectural lighting consultant my thoughts always turn to the light within a space and how it can positively support the activities and tasks within it. Firstly, this is your home and the number one rule should be to make it personal; the best lighting in any home is lighting you enjoy. Beyond that initial advice there are a few simple tips to helping craft a comfortable, productive, and positive home office setting.
Daylight is a great beginning. Not only is natural light our most energy efficient source, it generally provides almost all the light needed in a small room during the day. Further considerations should be given to daylight controls, commonly called blinds or curtains in the home; being able to filter or block portions of daylight is important to eliminating glare and maintain visual comfort. Even if your home office is tucked away in the windowless basement, try changing locations throughout the day to windowed rooms; it can make a world of difference to mood, energy and productivity.
Desk lamps, often not utilized in bright and uniformly lit formal office environments really find their usefulness in the home. They come in endless styles and technology to suit personal tastes while also ensuring the desk has an added bit of dedicated task lighting. During the day, desk lamps are often seen as décor, but if your workday begins early or ends late enough, they transform into your key primary source illuminator. Basic recommendations for what to look for in a desk lamp are for the abilities to dim the light source and control glare through lamp shade or direction adjustability. Also remember, if you’ve decided to transform your living room lazy boy into your office, the floor lamp in the corner behind you is your desk lamp.
Although not specifically lighting, another important and positive element for a home office is the inclusion of visual interest. This is because if someone spends their entire day staring at a computer screen eyestrain is inevitable. To reduce the likelihood and severity of strain, position yourself to have a view out a window. Also, place some objects of interest in your home office that you can gaze upon can provide for similar relief – to bring this full circle, one potential object could be a desk lamp.
Lastly, as at the beginning, the foremost rule should be personal comfort and happiness. Everyone is different and the conditions preferred can vary widely; hopefully these simple tips applied in whichever manner works for you can help provide your new full-time home office with positive, productive, and comfortable conditions.
As we adjust to a new normal, you may find yourself in a new situation working at home. Here’s what you need to know to help make your remote office as comfortably lit as possible.