Receiving Visual Information
In order for an observer to gain visual information, four important details should be considered. The object's characteristics, as discussed in Form & Surface. For example, whether it is two-dimensional or three-dimensional, where depth is largely influential. The simplest way to understand an object’s characteristics is by seeing it, and that’s why light plays an important role. In that way, we can understand an objects continuity or compactness, colour and so on without having to feel it, simply by the power of visual observation.
After taking into consideration an object’s characteristics, we can then identify its purpose and how it’s going to be used. If it is a visual task, such as reading, writing or even applying makeup and may more, it will require more precision. In that case, the light intensity becomes critical, where a stronger light might be needed for us to perform the task well. Not only will a stronger light help us see better during these tasks, it will also prevent our eyes from becoming strained and tired, which could occur when trying to perform these tasks in a dimmer light.
With that in mind, the observer's visual ability should also be acknowledged, since vision can range from one person to another, for a list of reasons, like age, impairment, distraction or even disinterest.
After understanding all these points, we can then react the object's visibility, where the observer should be able to separate the object or the task from its surround, bring us back to the point of contrast control. With focusing on all these points as designers, we’re enabling ourselves to provide quality lighting.
Next Article: Lighting and Visual Performance