Benefits of Professional Outdoor Lighting

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we’re passionate about providing our clients with beautifully designed lighting systems using the highest-quality fixtures available. Our clients love the results! If you are considering adding outdoor lighting to your property but aren’t sure of all the benefits, here are just a few.

image04Increased safety. Have you ever rolled your ankle on a rock in the middle of a walkway? Or, have you been unsure of where you are walking and found yourself stepping in a hole? Maybe you are more coordinated than me, but I certainly have. Outdoor lighting increases the safety of your property by properly illuminating the areas most traveled by friends and family. It helps guide people throughout the property safely and provides sure footing throughout the area.

Increased safety. Outdoor lighting makes your home look like someone is always home. Having good lighting around the entrances of your home, as well in areas that seem “too dark” at night, will keep away any unwanted guests. And, with Lighting Control Automation, you can have certain lights inside your house go on at night to make it seem like someone is inside even if you are on vacation.

outdoor-deck-lightsMore time outdoors. When the weather is nice, there is no place I’d rather be than outside, but darkness can easily force you back inside. Having patio and deck lights around your outdoor living structures allow you to use the spaces into the night. You can keep guests outside at an outdoor party, or simply sit back and relax on a nice spring or summer night.

Improved curb appeal. Homeowners take great pride in their homes and properties. Unfortunately, when the sun goes down, so does the beauty sometimes. Outdoor and landscape lighting ensure that your property, and its colors and textures, can be appreciated at all hours of the day and night. Additionally, if you are looking to sell your home, outdoor lighting allows potential buyers to drive by when they are out of work and still see your property.

Outdoor lighting is an investment in your property, but it is an investment with many benefits. If you have questions on adding landscape lighting to your property, please call your nearest Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.

When Should you Plan your Outdoor Holiday Lighting

It’s July, which means we’re over half way through the year and just a few short months away from the holiday season. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we LOVE the holidays! It’s fun, festive and there is tons of lighting. We’re often asked about outdoor holiday lighting and when the best time to plan for the season is. When it comes to holiday lights, the old saying “the early bird gets the worm” is definitely fitting.

Holiday partySome of our holiday lighting clients include towns that want their main streets lit and commercial properties like malls, restaurants and office buildings. Many times, they have a clear idea of what they’d like: lighted Christmas trees, c9 string lights, etc. Because of the specificity and quantity they may require, it’s suggested to reach out to your holiday lighting company as early as possible, often times in the summer months. That way they can order early and make sure your outdoor holiday décor comes in before Thanksgiving for installation.

While residential homeowners may not need to call regarding their holiday lights in July, early is still better. Meeting with your holiday lighting provider in September or October will give them time to get your lights and get you on the installation schedule so your lights are ready to be turned on right after Thanksgiving.

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we have a full service approach to outdoor holiday lighting with four steps.

C9 lights are a popular way to highlight a home's roofline.

C9 lights are a popular way to highlight a home’s roofline.

1. The first step in the OLP holiday lighting service is design. From classically beautiful outdoor string lighting to bright and festive candy cane and stocking lights, there is something for everyone when it comes to Christmas lights. We’ll create an outdoor lighting display that you are sure to love.

2. The second step is what every homeowner dreads: installation. Instead of you going up that tall ladder, our trained lighting installers do. We’ll check each light and make sure everything is ready to go for your holiday season.

3. When the season is over, you don’t have to worry about taking down your holiday lighting, we’ve got you covered. Our team will come to your home and take down all of your lights.

4. The last step is storage. We store all of our client’s outdoor lighting for them until the next season. Not only does this free up some space in your garage, basement or attic, but it also allows us to check each bulb before installing them again next year.

If you would like to discuss you outdoor holiday lighting needs, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.

Bring Hawaii to your Backyard with New Tiki Torches

Whether you have a deck, porch, patio or other outdoor living space, we hope you are able to enjoy  time with friends and family outside. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we design, install and maintain custom landscape lighting systems that extend the time our clients can spend outdoors. If traditional outdoor lighting isn’t your taste, there are other options for your to consider like outdoor string lighting, LED strip lighting and one of our newest outdoor lighting fixtures: the tiki path light.

Tiki torches remind me of exotic Hawaiian resorts and other tropical locations. Their fun and festive, but they aren’t that practical. The small torch at the top rarely provides enough light to truly illuminate a space. Our new tiki path light, however, is both functional from a lighting perspective and festive!

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The shape and flame are reminiscent of the typical tiki torch, but under the flame is also a path light that shoots light downward, providing light for patios, decks, walkways and more.

The brass fixture has an easy to access housing basin to hold kerosene or citronella (you have to keep those bugs away when company is over). The fixture itself includes a durable braided wick and an attached snuffing cap when it’s time to put the flame out and go inside.

Underneath the housing basin is where the path light portion of the tiki path light begins. While the fixture (available in halogen or LED) can easily illuminate the surrounding area, it doesn’t take away from the festive look of the torch. Unlike traditional path lights, these are set higher off the ground like a typical tiki torch is. The height allows for a larger spread of light below.

The Cabo Tiki Lights as we call them carry a lifetime warranty and can be added on to existing landscape lighting systems.

This is just one example of creative and unique outdoor lighting choices. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, our trained lighting designers will work with you to lay out a system that creates the outdoor ambiance you’ve always wanted in your yard and property. Please reach out to your local OLP office if you have any questions.

Add Party String Lighting to your Backyard Space

Your backyard is your space to sit back and enjoy time with friends and family. In previous posts, we’ve discussed how adding outdoor lighting allows you to spend more time outside, but there is more than one way to achieve the same end result. If traditional landscape lighting isn’t for you, outdoor string lights may be the perfect solution.

String lights are most commonly linked to holiday lighting, adding festive cheer to the inside and outside of homes around Christmastime. They are classically beautiful, but did you know some string lights are made to be a permanent fixture in your outdoor living space?

 

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This backyard that we feature in our video series Transformation Augusta has a beautiful outdoor kitchen and living area that guests tend to gather at night. Instead of path lights and floodlights, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives installed outdoor string lighting throughout the space.

As you can see in video and in the picture, the string lights provide enough illumination to enjoy the outdoor living spaces below. Unlike traditional outdoor and landscape lighting features, however, they become a festive focal point of the space.

These string lights are not the same as the lights you buy at your local home improvement or grocery store during the holidays. They are commercial grade with larger bulbs and heavier wire. Each string is made to withstand the elements and can used for both commercial and residential applications.

Screen Shot 2014-06-27 at 1.18.30 PMOutdoor string lights, or festoon lighting as they are often called, don’t have to be installed above and outdoor living space. Here you can see that the lights were wrapped around the railing of a staircase. The bulbs still provide enough light to provide sure footing, but look fun and romantic.

Adding festive string lighting to your outdoor living spaces will create the perfect ambiance for your friends and family to enjoy. If you have questions on this product, or other outdoor lighting applications, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.

Outdoor Lighting Perspectives Learns What’s New in Lighting at LightFair

As America’s most trusted outdoor lighting company, we at Outdoor Lighting Perspectives have to stay abreast of what’s new in the lighting industry. From having conversations with manufacturers and distributors to attending trade shows, we are always making sure we’re providing the very best to our clients. Just last week two members of our team went to Lightfair, the largest industry trade show to explore what’s new in outdoor lighting.

Held in Las Vegas, the 2014 Lightfair was the largest and best attended the show has ever been.

For landscape lighting, this year was all about the LED lamp market exploding. From many new manufacturers to different color options, color changing technology, and numerous new types and styles of LED lamp, the LED bulb is becoming more and more flexible in its lighting approach.  Options are now plentiful in terms of controlling brightness and beam spread, giving the landscape lighting professional ultimate control and flexibility in their design plan.  Quality and performance are becoming more impressive and consistent on an almost daily basis, as the technology that powers the LED light output is evolving and becoming more sophisticated, more durable, and more reliable.

The improving LED bulb is great news for our Outdoor Lighting Perspectives’ clients. As the technology and options continue to improve, we as designers will be able to do more with LED instead of having to rely on traditional halogen at times.

On the fixture side of things, there is a trend towards more sophisticated, modern, sleek fixture design options, as well as an increased offering in product material.  No longer is just brass, copper, and aluminum the norm.  Stainless steel, bronze, nickel plating, and high-tech ceramic are now being offered as finish alternatives.  Also, unconventional form hospitality lighting is getting a huge influx of new options all because of the LED technology boom.  You cannot overstate how much LED has changed the lighting world in terms of energy consumption, design and product flexibility, and installation practices.  LED is truly life altering technology.

When it comes to fixtures, OLP only installs lights with a performance we can trust. We were happy to see the design options become more vast as each client has a different home and different tastes.

Stay tuned…

Outdoor Lighting Perspectives Launches Online Video Series

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we pride ourselves on being the experts in outdoor and landscape lighting. With over 20 years and 100,000 projects under our belts, we are America’s most trusted resource for outdoor lights. To illustrate our process and passion for the business, we are THRILLED to announce the release of Transformation Augusta, our new video series.

The entire series can be watched and enjoyed at OutdoorLights.com/Transformation.

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Transformation Augusta was filmed this past spring in historic Augusta, Georgia with OLP client Pam Doumar, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Augusta franchisee Pat Otis and host and OLP marketing manager, Jody Wetherill. Pat Otis has been designing and installing custom outdoor lighting systems for the past 14 years and is very familiar with lighting homes and properties in the area.

The four-part video series walks viewers through the process from the initial consultation and nighttime demonstration to the installation and reveal.

The Doumars have a historic home just outside of Augusta that is nearly 100 years old. When deciding on where to film Transformation Augusta, we were drawn to the beauty of both the home and the property. It allowed Pat to employ a number of different lighting techniques to highlight the space in the most beautiful ways. The final results was both aesthetically appealing and functional as you can see in the fourth episode of the series.

We are excited to finally roll out the video series and hope people enjoy it. As Rich Young, Vice President of Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, explains: “It was important to us that the series have an authentic feel and really connect with people who are considering an outdoor lighting installation. By using real team members, franchisees and clients, we were able to achieve that.”

Please visit OutdoorLights.com/Transformation to view Transformation Augusta in its entirety.

Why you should consider LED landscape lighting

We at Outdoor Lighting Perspectives remember when LED landscape lighting first came into the outdoor lighting arena. Used for years in holiday lighting, LED was touted as the best outdoor lighting technology out there. And while there were benefits of LED, we, and some of our clients, didn’t feel it was great for illuminating homes and landscapes.

When LED first hit the market, the color wasn’t what people were used to. It was too bright, resulting in a bluish color that skewed the color on the façade or garden. Over the last 5 years, however, LED landscape lighting has continued to improve and is our recommendation for home illumination.

The perception of LED color is often our clients’ number 1 concern for using the light, but as the technology has improved, so has the color. Just like traditional halogen landscape lighting, LEDs now have a warm, pleasing color that will accentuate the colors and textures on a property. No more blue light!

architectural-outdoor-lightingFor residential outdoor lighting, LED lights are the most energy-efficient option, cutting down lighting energy costs by up to 80%! They don’t require the same wattage as halogen lighting, resulting in this savings.

LED bulbs can last for up to 50,000, however that number depends on the quality of the LED, the design of the system, the environment of the installation and other factors.  The long life saves clients money on maintenance and service costs because you just don’t have to replace bulbs nearly as often.

logan-martin-lake-house-OLPAs LED technology has improved, so have the installation opportunities. When LED landscape lighting was first rolled out, you needed specific light fixtures for LED. So, if you had an existing system, you had to purchase and install all new fixtures. Now, with more advanced bulbs, an existing halogen system can be retrofitted easily to LED with new bulbs.

If you are interested in adding outdoor LED lights to your property, or would like to discuss ways to retro fit your exiting system, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office. We look forward to hearing from you.

Where to Start with Outdoor and Landscape Lighting

When it comes to outdoor lighting, it doesn’t have to be installed all at once. For our clients who have large properties, it’s common to do sections of the property at different times. You may start with the backyard and then move to the front, or vice versa. We are often asked if there are areas that we suggest to pay particular attention to towards the beginning of a project and for safety and security concerns and there definitely are.

Stairs. When they aren’t properly lit, stairs can be a safety hazard at night. A friend or family member can easily take a step incorrectly and injure themselves on just one stair. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we suggest that stairs are properly lit wherever they are on the property. On decks and patios, we often use step lights on the step itself or deck lighting that shines down on the stair. If you have steps near your front door, we may suggest path lighting or another lighting application.

porch-lightingEntrances. Personally, I don’t like to stand outside a doorway in the dark, nor do I like to look outside and not be able to tell who is waiting on my front stoop. Adequate outdoor lighting will not only make you feel more safe and secure, but also your guests. Not to mention, well lit homes are less likely to be broken into. While my mind always goes to the front door, we would suggest having any door that leads into your home well lit.

Paths and Walkways. When walking outdoors at night, it is easy to step on a rock, stick or other object and twist an ankle or, worse yet, fall. Path and walkways lighting is the best way to ensure that people can see where they are stepping. It also provides a clear path for visitors, allowing you to guide them throughout the property.

outdoor_lightingAround Pools and Water Features. Pool deck lighting is an absolute must. Yes, for safety concerns, it is important to have, but it also keeps the space usable at all times. You don’t want people to leave your poolside oasis just because the sun has gone down! Path lights and down lights are great options for poolside lighting.

If you have questions on outdoor lighting design and how it can increase the safety and security of your property, please reach out to your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office. One of our trained designers is sure to create a system that is both beautiful and functional.

Choosing the Right Outdoor Lighting Company

A house and property aren’t just a house and land, in many respects it’s the center of your personal life, your home. It’s also may be your largest financial investment, one that you care for and take pride in. When it comes to making changes or renovating your home or property, we all want to feel good about the contractor that you hire. And when it comes to outdoor lighting companies, here are some questions to ask:

Waterfall lightingIs outdoor and landscape lighting their main service offering? At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, lighting is all that we do. We pride ourselves on designing, installing and maintaining the best lighting systems in the country. Unfortunately too many outdoor contractors have added lighting to their services, but they aren’t experts. You’ll want an outdoor lighting company that has the knowledge of the industry and can answer all your lighting questions.

What is their design philosophy? One basic lighting system does not fit all properties. When it comes to outdoor lighting design, your provider should be all about the effect. The effect should highlight the textures, colors and features of your home, but it should also fulfill your needs and wants? Do you want to light a particularly dark area of the yard? Do you want to be able to spend more time on your patio? The lighting design should focus on the goals that you discuss.

What types of outdoor lighting fixtures do they offer? Outdoor lighting is an investment and like all investments, you want to ensure you made a good one. The quality of a lighting system is often in the fixtures. Not only should your outdoor lighting company provide the latest lighting technologies, like LED, but they should also have fixtures with a great warranty and guarantee. That way you know that if something happens, you’re covered.

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we pride ourselves on being America’s premier lighting provider. And to show it, we recently filmed our process. The series of videos, entitled Transformation Augusta follows Pat Otis of Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Augusta while he designs, installs and reveals a gorgeous system for his clients. We’ll be sharing the episodes here on the blog as well as our website in the next few weeks.

Stay tuned.

Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Austin Lights Lone Star Court Hotel

There are boutique hotels that are inviting and unique. Lone Star Court Hotel is a new hotel in Austin that provides a retro-Austin feel and a great place to gather. The hotel includes a large open courtyard with a bar, outdoor seating and fire features. The outdoor courtyard is the heart of the hotel with live music nightly.

When it came to the hotel outdoor lighting, they turned to Rick Johnson of Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Austin to enhance the safety and ambiance of the space. With great outdoor spaces throughout the entire property, Rick designed an outdoor lighting system that included both classic and more modern lighting applications.

photoWhen evaluating the space, a potential safety concern was noticed on the open rail stairwells. There were no lights! Small LED down lights were installed on the side of the handrail posts to provide the needed light for guests to see where they are stepping.

Rick used three different lighting techniques to light the beautiful trees on the Lone Star Court Property. One of, if not the, most common way to illuminate a tree is uplighting which was used on the majority of the trees at the hotel. Uplighting consists of fixtures being installed at the base of the tree shining upward and is a great way to highlight the tree. In addition to uplighting, Rick and his team installed moonlights and decorative lighting. Moonlights are installed up in the branches of the tree shining downward, resulting in beautiful shadows mimicking the effect of the moon. The decorative lights that were set in trees were LED tube styles lights.

Throughout the property, there are a number of walkways and paths as well as a few walkway bridges. LED path lights were used around the sidewalks of the property while pond lights were installed under the walkway bridges.

This is just some of the lighting that was used at the Lone Star Court Hotel, but Rick’s favorite happens in the heart of the property: the courtyard. Hanging under the pavilion in the center of the outdoor space, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Austin added 5 lines of commercial grade string lighting. Using an incandescent “Edison” bulb on a dimmer, Rick was able to provide the high end party lighting that the hotel was looking for.

If you have questions on hotel and hospitality outdoor lighting, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.