Hard Light

Photoshop has a blend mode called “hard light”. In undergrad when we were drawing and painting each day we discussed hard light. Literally, a blast of illumination on the subject at hand. Yikes. (Those were some brave nude models). However, seeing with fresh eyes requires shining a bit of hard light.

I’ve been an interior designer for over 25 years now with always at least one active project going on. Over the last few years I’ve gravitated to my industrial design background and my love for surface pattern design to start to work on a line of products for interiors as well. That’s now coming to life, but the interiors work is a consistent part of our business. Designers see a lot. We’ve seen offices that are straight out of the 50’s and homes that haven’t been updated (at all) since the 70’s. I used to wonder why people left things they way they did for so long and then I realized that we just stop seeing things that become part of our daily routine. We just accept the status quo. 

"I realized that we just stop seeing things that become part of our daily routine."

One of our corporate clients, who happen to be great people that we really enjoy, called us to help them with their lobby. This is a company that is part of a large conglomerate and one that deals with multi-national corporations that are household names. When we were initially contacted we had never heard of them. We had to look up what they did. On our first visit we found out what prompted the call. Apparently most of the employees used a different entrance, a back entrance, on a daily basis and rarely went through the lobby. That winter it had snowed so much that they couldn’t use their usual entrance. The CEO and the controller both walked through the lobby from the front door for the first time in years. They were instantly aware of the problem. They saw that it hadn’t been updated in about 30 years. They greeted clients here daily but merely opened the door and invited them in to the office. That snowy day they had fresh eyes and realized that they had been bringing multi-national CEO’s and executives they were trying to close deals with through a lobby that looked like it belonged to a company that had long since closed down. Hard light and fresh eyes make for great changes. 

What’s the elephant in the room? What could use a dose of hard light in your life? I’m thinking that it’s time to rework our office. When we proceed, I’ll share the process and pictures as we go.