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Posts from the ‘Inspiration’ Category

Rooftop Theatre: Lincoln Center’s New Venue, The Claire Tow Theater, and the Opening Production of “Slowgirl”

June 10, 2012


Lincoln Center Theatre facade night light lighting LCT LCT3 "Vivian Beaumont" "Claire Tow" "New York" NYC architecture

Someone at Lincoln Center knows what they’re doing, and it makes me really happy.

A new theatre in Manhattan has just popped up in the most unlikely of places — on the roof of another theatre!  And it’s not just any roof; it’s the roof of the Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center, the home of the Lincoln Center Theater and the current production of War Horse, a building originally designed by Finnish-American architect Eero Saarinen in 1965.  (You may recognize Eero Saarinen’s other prominent works of American architecture such as Washington-Dulles International Airport or the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, Missouri.)

Designed by H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture, the new Claire Tow Theater sits lightly atop the monumental Saarinen structure, just barely peeking over the thick concrete roof as it looks down onto the reflecting pool and plaza below.  If you weren’t paying attention you’d almost miss it during the day, as its blue-green glass facade and low profile almost make it disappear into the sky vault above.  At night, though, the structure glows with light, providing a trim illuminated “cap” to the Beaumont Theater below.

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The Lights of Christmas in New York City

December 18, 2011


nyc "new york" "new york city" Christmas December holidays light lights tree "5th ave" night street

There is really only one word to describe New York City at Christmas time: magical.

This will be my second winter in the city but my first to take the time to truly appreciate it.  Despite the noise, the people, the traffic, the advertisements, and the non-stop hustle and bustle of this city, I, every so often, come across moments when everything stops … and in that stillness I take a deep breath, silently enjoying the discovery of a part of the city that makes it all worth it.

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Why Lighting Design Makes Me Happy – And Why it Might Make You Happy Too

November 19, 2011


nyc "new york" city skyline lights glow night

A few nights ago I had the good fortune to run across a good friend who I hadn’t seen since I left grad school almost six months ago. We quickly got to chatting about life updates, and I started filling him in on the details of my new job (which I started almost three months agohow time flies). As I rattled on about new projects and learning experiences he stopped me and made an observation that, unexpectedly, hit me like a ton of bricks.

“You look really happy,” he said.

I paused. I hadn’t really thought about it lately. And then there was a moment of instant clarity, as if the clouds had parted and a ray of sunshine had suddenly burst through …

I realized: I am. I’m very happy.


Why am I so happy?

I’m happy because good lighting makes me happy.

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Sparks of Inspiration – Design and Designers

August 6, 2011


Every once in a while in my design work I come across something that really blows me away — something that drives me to work harder, try something new, or think in a new way.  It’s like a tiny explosion goes off in my brain, and then suddenly I snap back to reality, my focus sharpens, and my creative drive kicks into turbo mode.  It’s these exciting moments of inspiration that keep me going and push me to be a better designer — and I absolutely love when they happen.

Below are some of the people and ideas that sparked my imagination this week and really got my creativity and productivity flowing.  Hopefully you’ll find something that inspires you, too!


This documentary about Seattle-based architecture firm BUILD expresses beautifully of a lot of the things I love about being a designer – from being constantly “design conscious” to conceptions of people interacting with spaces.  It reminded me why I love what I do, and really motivated me to put extra effort into my work these past few days. If you’re at all interested in architecture or design, I would highly recommend reading their blog, too.

The BMW Guggenheim Lab has stopped in New York City! I’ve recently developed a new interest in urban planning and design in the course of my lighting work, and this mobile lab that has set up shop on Houston St. downtown sounds like the perfect place to indulge in that interest. The structure of the lab is also interesting in and of itself — it’s a traveling classroom, lecture hall, and workshop for solving problems in the city.  I’m thinking about heading downtown to a few events while it’s here. Watch the video to learn more.


I was fortunate enough this past weekend to have the free time to stand in line for over two hours to get in to see the Alexander McQueen exhibit at the Met — the verdict: totally worth it.  First, the clothing was simply out of this world — I’d never seen anything like it before.  Now I know fashion and lighting don’t seem like they have a lot in common, but the theatricality of McQueen’s style was absolutely an inspiration for me.  The colors, textures, and shapes were a visual feast to behold.  Here was a designer that stretched his ideas to their wildest ends — and people admired and respected him for it.  Second, the exhibit environment was almost as dramatic as the clothing.  Each line was showcased in a unique, I’d venture to say architectural, environment ranging from the concrete austerity you see above to environments incorporating holographs, mirrors, projections, turntables, and more.  I only wish the lighting had done more to showcase the vibrant color of the clothing (most of it was lit in yellowed halogen lamps), but the impact of the environments in combination with the fashion more than made up for it.  I’m sorry to say that it closes tomorrow, so if you haven’t been — GO NOW!


Finally, I ran across the website of Steven Harris Architects this week and I had to mention them for the stunning photography of their work.  Check out their portfolio photos — the lighting is fantastic in all of them! Really a great showcase of how architecture and light can work together in harmony. Check it out!

That’s all for now — I hope to bring together more posts like this in the future.  For more day-to-day inspirations and news follow me on Twitter!