How being a lighting evangelist helped children in northern Sweden
By Svante Pettersson,
Architectural Lighting Advisor, Creative Director at Philips Lighting at Nordic
I began my working life as an electrician. I soon discovered that what I liked about that was seeing how I could change the atmosphere in a space by changing the positioning of a light source, or its intensity. And then I saw how that changed how I actually felt. That’s how I became a lighting evangelist!
Making outdoor playgrounds inviting in winter
It was really exciting for me to contribute to a project to create innovative outdoor lighting for the city of Uppsala, together with Bjerking, their local lighting designers. For me, it was extremely importan that the design was made by local designers. They were open to more than just reducing energy consumption – which is of course important too. From my own experience, I know how lighting can change how I feel, so I like to talk to the people who will be affected by a lighting project, to find out what’s important for them. Northern Sweden only gets about six hours of daylight per day from October to March, so parents in Uppsala were concerned about how little time their children got to spend outdoors in winter. Working with the designers and our own product experts at Philips Lighting, the gloominess of Uppsala’s ‘Giraffe Park’ was transformed! It became a warmly welcoming and a more safe place for children to be. The results were excellent, according to many parents’ reports on changes in the children’s behavior after the installation. More children went outdoors to play, and subsequently had a bigger appetite, slept better, and generally seemed more contented. I’m pleased I was able to use my own personal experience and vision to influence the lighting choices in Uppsala that are making children’s lives better!