The Illuminators

Outdoor Lighting Design Techniques

The first step in THE ILLUMINATORS design process is to ask "Why light?" An outdoor lighting system can focus on safety, security, property value, budget, enhancement of the beauty of the landscape, or a combination of these points. Our experienced design team uses several techniques to accomplish these goals. For example, up-lighting a tree near the house entrance will provide safety and security, or strategically placing a few spotlights within a garden will provide aesthetic enhancement. Low levels of light create subtle beauty, illuminating points such as paths and gardens. Brighter lighting effects are used for focal points within the landscaping. For example, down lighting placed within a tall tree must be bright enough to cast "moonlighting" shadows in the surrounding area. Our design engineers know how much light is needed to create the desired effects and can implement this knowledge into your lighting design.

The following examples are just a few of the various design techniques we use:

Silhouetting

Silhouetting
Displays a dark image of the object by lighting the vertical surface directly behind it.
This technique shows the shape but not the color or texture of an object.

Examples

Silhouetting a tree Silhouetting against a house

Shadowing

Shadowing
Creates a shadow on a vertical surface by placing the fixture directly in front of the object.
The closer the light fixture to the object, the larger the shadow.

Examples

Shadowing on a Planter Shadowing on an Evergreen

Tree Up Lighting

Tree Up Lighting
Up-lights are placed at the base of the tree.
This creates a dramatic effect and highlights the features and color of the tree.

Examples

A Bird in a Tree Tree Up Lighting

Tree Down Lighting

Down Lighting
Down-lights are placed within the tree.
This creates a moonlight effect.

Examples

A Driveway with Downlighting Moonlighting

Path Lighting

Path Lighting
Creates symmetrical patterns and pools of light for illuminating walkways, steps, flowerbeds, and gardens.
Allows for safe navigation and enhances the beauty around the property.

Examples

Front Walk Path Lighting Pool Path Lighting

Step and Deck Lighting

Step and Deck Lighting
Light up normally dangerous high traffic areas.
All changes in elevation landscape such as steps or terraces should be illuminated for safety.

Examples

Step Lighting Stairs Lighting

Grazing

Grazing
Enhances the texture of a vertical surface by placing a fixture directly against the surface and aiming the beam up.
This technique really highlights the architectural beauty and causes stunning effects.

Examples

Grazing on a Peak Grazing on a TurretGrazing on a Turret

Good Ideas

  1. LED bulbs and fixtures are shock resistant. They can withstand bumps and knocks. Unlike incandescent bulbs, LED bulbs do not have delicate filaments which can be damaged due to movement of a fixture or bulb.

  2. LED outdoor landscape lighting is the safest form of outdoor lighting. LED landscape lighting produces very little heat compared to normal halogen landscape lighting. The LED lighting fixture is only slightly warm to the touch where as halogen 12 volt landscape lights can cause severe burns to people if touched.

  3. LED bulb replacement is almost non-existent. LED landscape lighting bulbs are rated to last 25,000 - 70,000 hours depending on the manufacturer. Normal 12V halogen bulbs are usually rated between 1,000 - 10,000 hours.


News and Events

Featured in the Chicago Tribune

You can read about it here.

Angie's List Super Service Award for 2013.

The award reflects consistent high levels of customer service. Check our reviews at AngiesList.com.

"2017 Best of Houzz Service" Award Winner

It's Official!!

The Illuminators Outdoor Lighting has won the "2017 Best of Houzz Service" award!!

Thanks to all our great customers for making this happen. We appreciate your enthusiasm and business!


Service Area

The Illuminators provides outdoor lighting solutions for the following cities:

Mchenry Il, Streamwood Il, Caledonia Il, Malta Il, Berwyn Il, Wedron Il, Plano Il, Dekalb Il, Chicago Heights Il, Big Rock Il, Bolingbrook Il, Willow Springs Il, Gurnee Il, Lindenwood Il, Woodstock Il, Elgin Il, Evergreen Park Il, Harvard Il, Carol Stream Il, River Forest Il, Lake Forest Il, Park Forest Il, Monee Il, Triumph Il, Tinley Park Il, Wayne Il, Palatine Il, Plato Center Il, Carpentersville Il, Addison Il, Chicago Ridge Il, Steger Il, Prospect Heights Il, Buffalo Grove Il, Lincolnshire Il, Hinsdale Il, Winthrop Harbor Il, Alsip Il, West Brooklyn Il, Markham Il, Shabbona Il, Lake Bluff Il, Lee Il, Compton Il, Hampshire Il, Lansing Il, Braidwood Il, Cherry Valley Il, Fox River Grove Il, Downers Grove Il, Berkeley Il, Evanston Il, Thornton Il, Western Springs Il, Woodridge Il, Holcomb Il, Millbrook Il, Saint Charles Il, Bedford Park Il, Huntley Il, Roscoe Il, Oak Lawn Il, Hickory Hills Il, Yorkville Il, Kenilworth Il, Hazel Crest Il, Highland Park Il, Posen Il, Verona Il, Marseilles Il, Wheeling Il, Alden Il, Bristol Il, Deerfield Il, Lafox Il, Worth Il, Winfield Il, Manhattan Il, Cortland Il, Midlothian Il, Algonquin Il, Des Plaines Il, Russell Il, Marengo Il, Country Club Hills Il, Forest Park Il, Olympia Fields Il, Winnetka Il, Franklin Park Il, Schaumburg Il, Glenview Il, Belvidere Il, Lake Villa Il, Northbrook Il, Techny Il, Minooka Il, Elwood Il, Matteson Il, Hoffman Estates Il, Summit Argo Il

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