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Co-design project with children in Edinburgh wins SLL Young Lighter award

Lighting designer, Emma Beadle has been named the SLL Young Lighter of the Year at the Lux Awards 2018 for her work on developing co-designed lighting masterplans with school children in Edinburgh.

Left to right: Compare, Alun Chochrane, SLL President Iain Carlile, SLL Young Lighter of the Year 2018 Emma Beadle and Chair of the Lighting Education Trust, Bob Venning

The winning paper, entitled ‘Children’s Utopian Visions of the City: co-designing lighting masterplans through play and exploration’, was delivered in a 15 minute presentation alongside three other finalists in front of judges at LuxLive 2018.

Using a co-design methodology, Emma’s project aimed to engage students at a young age with lighting design. Adopting tested co-design methods for working with children, the project was formed around ethnography, observation, interviews and workshops.

Also awarded the prize for Best Written Paper, Emma set out to assert that children should receive an education in lighting design in order to develop design thinking and problem solving skills, to enhance personal development. It also sets out to raise awareness of a career in lighting with a view to securing longevity for the industry by attracting greater numbers of young people.

This year’s judging panel included SLL President Iain Carlile, Vice President Ruth Kelly Waskett, Chair of the Lighting Education Trust (LET) Bob Venning, John Aston FSLL and Kristina Allison MSLL. Judging was extremely close due to the exceptional quality of the four finalists. Each topic was unique, making for an exciting set of final presentations at LuxLive 2018.

Three of the four 2018 SLL Young Lighter of the Year finalists at the Lux Awards 2018. Left to right: Carla Piatti, Emma Beadle and Katia Kolovea

Also awarded was the prize for the Best Presentation, which was won by Katia Kolovea and her presentation ‘Light as a Medium to Enhance Communication in Urban Spaces.’ The other finalists were Carla Piatti – ‘Interactive Lighting in Public Spaces’ and Sanny Yuwono – ‘Is there a threshold for the degree of chroma used to allow colour in exterior lighting without making the building incongruous to its surroundings?’

The Young Lighter of the Year awards are designed to test not just the finalists’ ability to develop a lighting project, but also their presentation skills – an important soft skill that can make a big difference in the effectiveness of communicating and implementing theoretical ideas on an lighting design project.

The competition provides a unique platform for young lighters and are open for all to enter. The written paper and the presentation allow the young lighters to illustrate their knowledge and research on a lighting subject, hone their presentation skills, and raise their profile within the industry.

Each finalist delivered their 15 minute presentation to an audience at LuxLive on 15 November 2018. All of the finalists received a cash prize, along with a year's free membership of the Society.

Previous winners include, Seda Kacel, Christopher Knowlton, Sabine De Schutter, Rachael Nicholls, Janna Aronson, Youmna Abdallah, Sofia Tolia and the 2017 Young Lighter of the Year, Matt Hanbury.

If you are interested in finding out more about the 2019 SLL Young Lighter of the Year competition, please contact