Jan 232014
 

This year, Pegasus Lighting is celebrating its 15th anniversary, and to commemorate we will be posting articles every month about what was going on – you know, in terms of pop culture – in 1999. Just so we don’t forget where we came from.

Here are 15 things you might remember from 15 years ago.

1) Impeachment Trial of President Bill Clinton Begins in the Senate

A tense moment in U.S. history, Bill Clinton’s Senate impeachment trial began in January 1999. Clinton had been impeached by the House of Representatives on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice. It was only the second time in history that the House had impeached The President of the United States. The Senate trial, however, would end in acquittal.

Bill Clinton 15 Pop Culture Moments from January 1999

Sure, there were a lot of interesting things about the game itself, but the commercials are what really bring us back to the 1990s. The Broncos won for the second time in a row. Depending on your football affiliations, this could be an omen or a prophecy for the game coming up soon. Also noteworthy is that in 1999 John Elway was the oldest NFL player to be named Super Bowl MVP.

Continue reading »

 Posted by on January 23, 2014 at 1:44 pm
Jan 152014
 

When you step to the edge of the Grand Canyon, or take a gondola across Niagara Falls, or look over any natural abyss or up any colossal structure, well, there’s a certain thing that happens. Invoking Keanu Reeves and Joey Lawrence at once — an admirable feat itself — I call this feeling the whoa moment.

It’s that weightless feeling we get when we walk into a huge cathedral or behold a haunting religious painting or painted sarcophagus, things that make us say, Whoa! Seriously. Is this fo’ real?

 The Science of Whoa

Yesterday morning, on the front cover of its morning edition, The New York Times published a photo of a 1,500-year-old Buddhist relic held in the National Museum of Afghanistan, a museum that was devastated by the Taliban in 2001. One can only imagine how it must feel to behold this relic in person, to breathe the air of it. Its age, its spiritual significance, its stunning composition, its serenity, and even the story of the danger it survived in 2001, all help create an aura around the object. The thing has gravitas. Continue reading »

 Posted by on January 15, 2014 at 10:00 am
Jan 102014
 
Danser January2014 How to Paint with Light

via www.matthewdanserphotography.com

Recently I interviewed Austin, TX photographer Matthew Danser about some innovative ways he uses light in his digital photos.

For the photo shown to the right, taken at night in a Texas ghost town, Danser assembled the following items: a powerful, handheld LED light; his Canon 5D Mark iii camera and Canon 16-35 mm L lens (at 16mm); Canon 580ex 2 flash; a red gel (piece of red cellophane to color the light of the flash); a tripod; and his girlfriend’s finger (to graciously hold down the shutter release button because he forgot his bulb release at home!).

Danser told Pegasus: “So, I set my camera on bulb mode and had my girlfriend hold down the shutter release button for 13 minutes, while the camera was very sturdy on the tripod. The place was pitch black except for the stars and the moon (very little ambient light pollution in the desert). As my girlfriend was keeping the shutter open, I walked to one side of the structure and methodically shined my flashlight (rated at 2000 lumens, so it’s pretty bright) all along the exterior and front facade of the building. This lasted for about five minutes before I turned the flashlight off and ran to the other side of the building and ‘painted’ for another five minutes.”

Danser said that one of the important tricks of light painting is to show off the textures of the buildings by shining his LED flashlight at an angle instead of from the camera position.

After “painting” the sides of the building for five minutes each, he ran inside and popped off about 10 red-gelled flashes to create the effect of a warm glow pouring out of the building.

When asked how he was able to run in and out of the building without showing up in the photo, Danser simply replied that “The camera could not ‘see’ me because I was moving quickly, and there wasn’t enough ambient light to expose me in the picture.” While popping off the gelled flashes in the building, he always made sure he was not visible to the camera. Continue reading »

Jan 082014
 

They say no two snowflakes are alike.

These incredible photos from Alexey Kljatov prove it and reveal the awesome beauty of each one:

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The crazy thing is (as if the photos aren’t mind-blowing enough!), Kljatov took these photos with an old Canon point-and-shoot camera off his balcony in Moscow. He jerry-rigged a lens to the camera and taped the entire contraption to a piece of wood so the shot would be steady.

The snowflakes landed on a glass plate and he illuminated them with an LED flashlight from the opposite side. That’s right – no fancy studio lights or umbrellas, just a simple LED flashlight. Read more about his technique or see his Flickr page for more photos.

 

Jan 022014
 

Who wouldn’t love to live with a little less clutter? There’s a reason Pinterest is overflowing with images of perfectly categorized & organized cupboards, closets, pantries, drawers, desks, garages, kitchens … the list goes on! See for yourself: organization is truly one of social media’s best friends.

Closets & pantries can fall to the wayside when it comes to organizing chaos, and the culprit is often poor lighting. Builders are notorious for installing lone overhead fluorescent fixtures that simply don’t create effective storage spaces. Here are four fresh closet lighting ideas for inspiration:

1. Track Lighting: Functional, Beautiful Spotlighting

via artistic designs for living 4 Fresh Closet Lighting Ideas

via artisticdesignsforliving.com

Continue reading »

Dec 302013
 

Light Bulb Question Mark Green Where Did the Phrase Go Green Come From?

“Going green” has come to symbolize environmentalism in such a familiar way that most of us don’t think twice about who first coined the phrase.

I was curious about the origin of the term and wondered what made it take such strong hold in the English language. Speaking of curiosities, remember Heinz’s food flop several years ago when they decided to go green (literally) with ketchup? Glad that didn’t take hold.

Most people associate the beginning of the green movement and environmentalism with the publication of Silent Spring by Rachel Carson in the 1970’s.

Surprisingly, it dates back even further, to Henry David Thoreau’s writings in the 19th century. Thoreau spoke about living a “green” life in The Maine Woods in his call for conservation, forest preservation and respect for nature. You are probably familiar with several of Thoreau’s famous inspirational quotes (i.e., “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams,” or “What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us”). His greener remarks include:

What is the use of a house if you don’t have a decent planet to put it on?

This one’s my favorite (Thoreau, you were a funny guy!):

Beware of all enterprises that require a new set of clothes.

Did you have any idea the U.S. “green movement” was rooted in early American philosophy?

 

 Posted by on December 30, 2013 at 10:01 am
Dec 272013
 

eco friendly light bulb lying The Biggest Impact of the EISA Is Here: Bye Bye 60 Watt Incandescent

It has taken 7 years but we are now here. On January 1, 2014 both the 60-watt and 40-watt incandescent light bulb will no longer be produced as a result of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) signed by President George W. Bush. In years past we have lost the 100-watt and 75-watt. However, this next phase will probably have the biggest impact. Why? Simple. The 60 and 40-watt light bulbs are the most popular. According to Residential Lighting, they represent over 50% of all light bulbs used today.

We have been covering the incandescent phase out on this blog for the last couple of years. However, as a reminder, a primary goal of this law is to raise appliance and lighting efficiency standards.

The 60 and 40-watt light bulbs will not just vanish into thin air on January 1, 2014. You will probably still see them in stores for a couple of months. The key is that as of 1/1/14 they can no longer be imported into or manufactured in the United States. Continue reading »

Dec 232013
 

Choosing a paint color can bring out the indecisiveness in anyone. My mother is famous for this – paint samples will stay on the wall for at least six months before a decision is made.

There are a lot of great resources out there on this; How to Quit Procrastinating on Color Choice on Houzz.com is short, sweet, and helpful for a start. Donna Frasca’s Color Expert blog is also enlightening.

Today, I want to talk about the lighting considerations that come into play with picking paint colors. We’ll start with a new vocabulary word for all you Scrabble competitors. Metamerism. Heard of it? If not, you’re certainly familiar with its meaning. Ever noticed how a paint color you carefully chose at the store looks completely different in your living room? Or how two seemingly black socks you put on in the morning turned into one black and one decidedly navy blue sock at the office? The effect of metamerism occurs when colors appear to change under different light conditions.

Metamerism can be used to your advantage – it’s certainly interesting to have a room with a dynamic paint color that changes from sunrise to sunset, from wall to wall, and from room to room. However, it’s important to be knowledgeable about how it works, so you don’t end up with a fast food red hue when you were aiming for a sophisticated shade of brick.

Know How Light Exposure (North, East, South, West) Affects Colors

innovative light blue colors to paint room How To Pick a Paint Color: The Lighting Perspective

Image via decosee.com

Continue reading »

 Posted by on December 23, 2013 at 10:00 am
Dec 172013
 

Our hope is for Light Reading to be a place you can come for inspiration and guidance as you plan your next lighting project.

The thing is, we are incredibly inspired by our readers!  Your creative installations, kind words, and contributions to product Q&A’s constantly remind us why we do what we do. In this season of thankfulness, we are so thankful for you.

As the year comes to a close, we wanted to share our top 5 most popular blog posts from 2013. Without further ado …

Motion Sensor Under Cabinet Lights Your Top 5 Favorite Blog Posts From 2013

“11 Beautiful Photos of Under Cabinet Lighting”

11 Beautiful Photos of Under Cabinet Lighting: This one definitely falls under the “inspiration” category, but it can also be helpful if you’re trying to determine what type of under cabinet lighting is your favorite for the kitchen. Puck? Linear? LED? Fluorescent? Be prepared to gaze at dreamy kitchens. Read More >>

iStock 000016712550Small Your Top 5 Favorite Blog Posts From 2013

“How To Have Great Lighting In a Rental”

Here’s How To Map Out Your Recessed Lights (An Infographic): Those who decide to add recessed lighting to a new or existing home are presented with a seemingly impossible task – laying them out on a blueprint. This infographic will clue you in on what every lighting designer knows about recessed lighting placement. You’ll be ready to install in no time. Read More >>

How To Install Recessed Lights In a Drop Ceiling: There are special considerations for this type of lighting installation; for example, you need to be cautious about heat output to avoid a fire hazard around plastic surfaced or fiberglass panels.  Read More >>

Tape Light Step Lights Your Top 5 Favorite Blog Posts From 2013

“8 Ways To Use Step Lights”

How To Have Great Lighting in a Rental: Trust Annie Josey to share ingenious ideas for amping up your lighting without ticking off your landlord. She walks you through the kitchen, bedroom, living room, bathroom, & patio, rescuing renters everywhere from bad lighting on the way. Read More >>

8 Ways To Use Step Lights (Photo Inspiration): Introduce yourself to the myriad of possibilities when it comes to staircase lighting with these gorgeous photos and links to make them happen in your space. Read More >>

We are looking forward to continuing to share lighting information and photos with you in 2014! As always, let us know if you have any special requests for blog topics below.

 Posted by on December 17, 2013 at 9:30 am
Dec 122013
 

holdman christmas show 20101 Top 5 Christmas Light and Music Displays

What is the Christmas season without Christmas lights and music? But what happens when you combine the two? Well, a wonderfully awesome Christmas light display of course! Check out our picks for the top 5 homes that combined the elements of lights and music to create unforgettable Christmas light displays.

1) The Holdman Family

Beautifully done, and extremely well organized, the Holdman family has been setting their Christmas display to music for years!

2) A Colorado Springs Home

This home goes above and beyond to spread the holiday cheer!

3) Gangham Style

What is 2013 without the widely renowned “Gangman Style” theme song? This home combines the funky fun song with a perfectly timed Christmas display.

4) Let’s Dance!

Although this one seems a little more fitting for a nightclub then a home, it still shines a fun light on combining music with a Christmas light display. Kudos for the creativity!

5) Fit for a Princess

So, maybe this one isn’t exactly “set” to music, but it is still one of the best home Christmas light displays we’ve seen. Even if this particular “home” is actually a castle belonging to a fairytale princess.

Do you know of any cool Christmas lighting displays that are timed to music?

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