How To Use Gallery Lighting To Illuminate Your Custom Frames

How To Use Gallery Lighting To Illuminate Your Custom FramesYour home is completely different from a museum. The purpose why both structures were built differs. You do not have guards to protect your valuables at home, and your house is not meant to be a place where arts are displayed. Even though your house does not have the layout of a museum, you can still integrate professional lighting for your custom frames with a couple of lighting techniques.

What is Gallery Lighting?

Gallery lighting is also called museum lighting. It is a method used in a professional setting for illuminating artworks. This type of lighting is used in museums to provide an unobstructed and clear view of the photograph, print, painting, or sculpture. It is also used as a means of getting rid of shadows and reflections on picture frames. Generally, gallery lighting helps to highlight the essential features of the artwork appropriately.

There is a right way of lighting, and it is a field of study on its own. The field considers the five “controllable qualities of light” which are color and distribution, the type of light available, angle, movement, and intensity. Lights can be used to enhance the contents of a gallery. The result of using incandescent spotlights and a series of halogen floodlights to illuminate a sculpture is striking.

How to Illuminate Your Home Using Gallery Lighting

How to Illuminate Your Home Using Gallery Lighting

A custom frame looks more special if it is illuminated with gallery lighting. This is mostly done in museums and art galleries. This technique of lighting, as stated earlier, is popularly called “gallery lighting”. It is used primarily to accentuate and illuminate your artwork. You can use a creative and fun way to do the same to the custom frames in your home.

Controlling all the five qualities following in your home may not be completely possible. However, you are still capable of creating a dramatic effect with these few tips:

1. Select the right space

You build rooms in your home to live in them. This is in contrast to the rooms of a museum which are built for only displaying artworks. Therefore, you should know that gallery lighting will not work for just any room in your house. You need to choose the space where you intend to display your custom frames appropriately. You also need to decide beforehand their position on the wall. Having the lightings in areas such as your office or lounge may cause the reflection of the light to fall on the computer screens and televisions; this will cause distraction.

You can choose your study, a room which is more receptive towards the display of arts for this endeavor. This will allow you to light your custom frames. Another right space is in the dining area, hallway, or entryway. In these spaces, your custom frames are visible to a large number of people, and the lights will not disrupt your daily life.

2. Pick the right light

There are numerous types of light you can choose from when using gallery lighting for your custom frame. It is important that you pick the right light. This is because the quality of your artwork is affected by the lighting over time.

For instance, UV light can cause damage to your artwork over time. It is known for fading images and pictures as time goes on. Keeping your artwork away from direct sunlight does not mean it cannot get damaged. There are many types of lighting that create heat and emit UV rays. Choose LED light bulbs over standard incandescent light bulbs. This is because the UV ray that the LED light bulbs emit is less. If you elect to use halogen bulbs, make sure it is not for long periods as they tend to emit heat and cause damage to the artwork over time. To completely protect your art, you can choose to frame it with UV-filter glazing.

3. Choose the right type of light fixtureChoose the right type of light fixture

There are multiple options to choose from when it comes to lighting fixtures. Some of these lighting fixtures include wall washers, picture lights, track lights, and ceiling lights.

Ceiling lights can light from above when surface-mounted or recessed. Make sure that the angle when using the ceiling light is at 30 degrees. If the angle is more, the custom picture frame will produce glare. You will get shadows if it is less than 30 degrees.
Just like ceiling lights, track lights are also adjustable. Its angle should also be at 30 degrees; nothing more, nothing less. However, track lights are much easier to install. Although their look may not be as professional and clean as recessed ceiling lights, they best suit homeowners who do not want to carry out renovation just for the lighting of artwork.

Picture lights are commonly used to light artworks at home. The light is cast downwards when attached to the top of the custom frame picture. Picture lights are available in a range of sizes, styles, and colors. They truly can make your artwork the center of attention. Since the light source is close to the artwork, you need to be careful of the light type and its intensity so that it does not cause damage to your artwork.

A more dramatic type of light fixture is the wall washers. Rather than illuminating a single artwork, they illuminate the entire room. They are great for highlighting artwork artworks in a room that requires to be illuminated. Your living room or your offices are examples of such places. You can place wall washers on the ceiling or the floor.

4. Pick the right custom frame

Not all frames are going to work well with gallery lightings. Therefore, make sure you choose a frame that will not reflect the lights to unwanted areas in your home. In other words, the frame you choose should emphasize the lighting instead. The look of your artwork can change when light is directly shone on it. You should have this in mind when selecting a custom frame.


 An interesting and fun way to accentuate your custom frame is by illuminating it using gallery lights. The ways on how to create a dramatic effect through illumination have already been discussed. The tips provided will help you to control the five qualities of light to enhance your artwork in the best possible way.

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