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Designing Luminous Arrays

Updated: Feb 4, 2019

SoftForm Lighting forms are similar to other lighting products in some ways (they're rectinlear in form) but they are also very different. Our LED diffusion is created by stretched fabric, the fabric can be printed, and the forms can be grouped together to create large scale arrays. This is especially useful when you want to create large (think wall size or whole ceiling) luminance and/or image displays.

In fact, creating arrays is an important feature to help you achieve biophilic lighting design elements of diffuse ambient illumination or analogous references to nature. These design elements have been covered in a previous blog post so we won't go into them here. But the key design paradigm shift is to think about creating large areas of luminance. Applying SoftForm Lighting forms as multi-unit arrays is a great way to accomplish that.

Creating luminous arrays is quite easy. For grid ceiling applications, simply place our white fabric light forms adjacent to one another. The grid (9/16" or 15/16") will separate the forms but the visual impact will be to create the illusion of a stretched fabric ceiling. The larger the array, the less the perceived brightness there is and the more visually comfortable, biophilic compatible illuminance the space will have.

8 x 8 array
8 x 8 Array

For example this reflected ceiling plan shows a nominal 8' x 12' recessed ceiling array that leaves room for an HVAC duct, sprinkler head or other such non-lighting ceiling element in the 2' x 2' X-out portion. Each of these shapes can be configured with standard ceiling T-grid components making installation simply out of the box and into the ceiling.

Another great application for SoftForm Lighting arrays is to create vertically mounted large format displays. In this case the recommendation is to create a recessed vertical wall niche of at least 4" in depth and then apply an array of SoftForm Lighting forms for the required dimensions. In a wall mounted application the form frames are joined together eliminating the need for T-grid between the forms.

In this example we have a 8' x 12' array utilizing our SFR44 series. Each panel of the array is this printed to correspond with the individual SFR44 light form. After each panel is installed in its correct position the full assembly renders as a large format image.

Although there are non-illuminated lines where the panels join, the image will be viewed as contiguous. Your brain simply ignores the lines and sees the whole image.

Additionally, SoftForm Lighting's Trimless Flange Adapter (TFA) enables the installation to be seamlessly trimmed out to the adjoining drywall for a finished look.

For assistance with either your ceiling or wall applications, contact your local SoftForm Lighting sales rep or email us at Either way will be happy to help you to get the right configuration for your project.

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