It's officially Fall, the temperatures and leaves are dropping at an alarming rate. Michigan football is winning again(Finally 3-0!). With the holidays right around the corner, lots of people are taking the opportunity to redecorate their home. We too have been busy with refreshing and re-imagining our retail space. This is part of the overall postioning of our brand and we thought we would invite you all along for the ride.
So, in this first week we will be talking about lighting. Lighting, as my brother taught me, is an important place to start with a space. Lighting changes how everything is perceived, from paint color to flooring. We have a unique set of needs because as an art gallery our product has to stand out, so the cleaner and whiter the light, the more the product stands out. On the flip side of this, is the fact that bright white light can wash things out and make a space feel rather cold. We will be addressing this second issue in the future with the help of designer and color specialist, Lesley David, who will be helping us pick out some new paint colors.
For the time being however, let's catch up to where Artisan's stands lighting wise right now. Past the entrance, down the center of the store, we have a series of eight cans with incandescent spotlights that line the center of the store, and three banks of halogen track lighting (8 lights per track) that light the art. These cans light the floor and guide you through the space, which has been recently redesigned into a winding path layout (I'll explain in a future post). Things get a little complicated once you throw in the fact that we have 10 foot ceilings that tend to make the space feel cavernous with no visual point of interest to keep you moving through the space.(store)
So the solution to the problems I've presented, was to switch our cans from a simple light source to something that adds structure and interest through shear volume and size. We switched the cans to pendants that are 2 ft. high and 23 in. across, which brings the ceiling down from 10 feet to 8 feet and gives the space more of a visual grounding. Pendant dishes can hold 4 compact fluorescents, really kicking out much more light for the same cost.
Most changes come at a cost, however. These pendants let off a wonderful warm glow but, as discussed above, this fundamentally changes the color in the store and our white walls now look faintly yellow. Well, shortly we will bring in Lesley and work on some paint colors. Enjoy the Fall days, I will be back more regularly now. Next week we will start to showcase some of our local artists.
Be Original, Buy Original