How to Use Light and Shadow in Interior Painting

Comments Off on How to Use Light and Shadow in Interior Painting

Light and Shadow in Interior Painting

Interior paint can be used to create various illusions within a room.  This is especially true for smaller interiors which can greatly benefit from the clever use of painting effects.  With a few simple tips and tricks, any space can be enhanced with the right application of paint for light and shadow effects.  An interior painter in Bernardsville can provide detailed insight into the various color schemes that can be used to enhance a homeowner’s painting experience.  The following are a few easy tips and tricks which explain how light and shadowing can be used to immediately boost the look and feel of any interior.

Making Smaller Spaces Appear Larger

Lighter Paint Colors

For smaller spaces, the color of the wall matters.  This is because the paint color used on the walls in can either make the space look much larger than what it actually is or the color can detract from the space, making it feel even more cramped.  For smaller spaces, lighter paint colors are recommended when trying to provide the illusion of spaciousness.  Lighter colors in general are expansive and tend to reflect light for a much brighter appearance.  On the other hand, darker colors create reverse shadowing which makes the room appear much smaller.  This is because dark colors absorb light, drawing the eye in and making the room appear even smaller.  Therefore, if the homeowner is seeking to create the illusion of spaciousness the smaller space will not benefit from dark hues.

Painting the Ceiling

Refresh a room with a fresh coat of paint on the ceiling.  Painted ceilings can have a huge impact on how a room is perceived.  A painted ceiling brings a shock factor into the room and it is one very clever way to make a smaller room appear much larger than what it truly is.  Painting ceilings is a great way to bring unexpected pops of color into a room as these colors provide depth and dimension.  For instance, if walls are painted in a light color, painting ceilings in a dark color will create a high contrast experience. Interior Painting Painting the Ceiling

Don’t Painting Trim & Molding

Another great way to make a smaller room appear larger is to paint trim and crown molding lighter colors such as white.  Many homeowners prefer colors that suit their personalities and personal preferences and will buy paint based on this alone.  For instance, homeowners may choose a paint based on a favorite color.  In this instance, smaller rooms painted in these various colors can be enhanced with light colored or white trim and crown molding for contrast and impact.

Contrasting Accent Colors

Accent colors can be used to create the effect of shadowing by pairing lighter variations of a color with its primary color.  For example, paint a room in a soft color but then paint the ceiling in its primary color for impact.  Another variation of this technique is to paint one accent wall.  Accent walls painted in bold colors contrast nicely with the remaining three walls painted in a neutral color.  Such techniques are important when creating dimension within a room.  Consult with an interior painter in Bernardsville for additional advice regarding accent walls and colors.


Lighting is another way to enhance interior paint.  Both natural and artificial lighting can make a room appear either much larger or much smaller than what it truly is.  In general, more light in a room results in the space feeling larger.  Reduced light makes the room darker and therefore appear to be smaller.  Also keep in mind that interior paint colors change under different lighting conditions.  For example, natural light changes depending on the time of day it is.  Therefore, the appearance of the size of the room can change every few hours.  For a brighter looking room open the blinds and pull back curtains to allow natural light to flow in.  This is also the case for artificial lighting.  The brightness of the bulbs used and the types of bulbs used can either provide more light into the room or can dim the room, changing the way color is interpreted by the eyes.

By using lighting and shadowing techniques optical illusions can be created that trick the eye into perceiving a room in a certain way.  This is especially helpful for smaller, tighter spaces that benefit from the illusion of expansiveness.  Contact an interior painter near you today who can provide additional ways in which to use light and shadow effects for interior paint projects.