The Lucy Pittaway art gallery in north Yorkshire was established a year ago but struggled to find the right lighting for the vibrant paintings on show. With the help of SaveMoneyCutCarbon, it tested and chose Soraa LED lamps to ensure a brilliant quality light that brought the artwork to life.
The Soraa lamps are so successful that the gallery owners have a supply to take with them when they exhibit in other premises.
Lucy and her partner Neil set up the art gallery in November 2015 in a two-storey unit on a retail estate in Brompton On Swale, Richmond. The move from her home studio was much needed as her growing success put too much pressure on the family space.
While not on the high street, the retail unit had the great advantages of onsite parking and lots of space.
The gallery is on the ground floor and the ceilings are around the standard height for domestic property and so are ideal for showing what the pictures would look like in a home.
Neil spent weeks researching lighting materials and first tested a commercial track lighting system with fixed, enclosed units, each with 200W equivalent lamps like those seen in store windows.
But this shed light across the walls of the gallery in a wash and made all the art look flat.
He next tested a domestic solution, with multiple units on multiple tracks with more than 100 50W halogen bulbs.
These provided a great colour spectrum but the couple realised that this would be expensive as well as problematic with the load on the lighting circuit. The running costs would be very high and the heat from the lamps was also an issue.
Neil decided to try LED lamps, looking for GU10 models using between 6-8 watts that would match the halogen quality of light. He ordered and tested 20 different types from a variety of online suppliers but every one of them produced poor quality colour. There was no depth and the pictures went flat.
Working with SaveMoneyCutCarbon, Neil then found the perfect solution with the Soraa LED Vivid 3 GU10. He chose a 7.5-watt lamp with a 25-degree beam angle, ideal for the gallery space.
The difference was clear to see – Soraa LED technology is ahead of the competition. The superior quality design and manufacture enables Soraa LEDs to emit violet light, unlike traditional LEDs that emit blue light. This means that Soraa LEDs render all colours of the whole spectrum accurately. It’s a light source that compares with natural sunlight.
The very low energy consumption compared with the 50-watt halogen bulbs means that the purchase costs will be repaid quickly through lower energy bills and the exceptionally long life of the LEDs means that the gallery will go on saving money for many years.
The gallery has been busy with UK orders as well as orders from around the world, including the USA, Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and Europe.
Neil Pittaway says: “The gallery is dedicated to Lucy’s work and we wanted the design, including the lighting to have modern yet warm feel to complement her style, which is joyful, jolly style of art. As her catchline says – ‘Art that makes you smile’.
“But we struggled to find the right lighting until I found an article by savemoneycutcarbon.com on the benefits of Soraa GU10 lamps and decided to try a couple. The lamps brought the pictures to life – they’re the only LED bulbs that have done that and everything else falls massively short.
“It also provides the best direction of light and from a metre back spreads the light to about a metre across with just the right focus not to lose strength.
“The pictures now look as they are meant to, with great colour tone and when we put on an exhibition in other premises we take our own Soraa GU10s with us to make sure that we have the best quality light.”
It has been a great year for Lucy and the gallery. Lucy was named as the Tour de Yorkshire official artist to celebrate the professional cycling event’s growing success and was also chosen as the UK’s Best Up and Coming Artist 2016 by the Fine Arts Trade Guild.
On top of that, Lucy was then chosen as Best Artist in Show from the finalists at the guild’s Stratford upon Avon awards event.
“The SaveMoneyCutCarbon team has been very helpful as the gallery has ordered the Soraa GU10s in batches, with swift response to issues with a couple of the lamps, replacing them with no quibble.”
"The unique qualities of Soraa LED lamps make them the best choice for art galleries and any space where it is essential to have lifelike, natural, engaging light. The bonus is that these lamps also provide big savings on energy bills and reduce carbon footprint.”