null Skip to main content
The Upsides of Uplighting

The Upsides of Uplighting

Posted by Laura Strommen - SoundPro on Mar 26th 2024

Estimated Reading Time: 4 Minutes

Turn a dark, dingy space into a warm and welcoming atmosphere with one simple lighting design technique: Uplighting! Uplighting optimizes the look of your space—emphasizing tall ceilings, walls, and architectural details. Because the fixtures are designed to point the light upwards, it creates an indirect lighting effect that delivers a calming, inviting glow that adds a flattering ambiance to your environment.


Simply put, “uplighting” is a lighting technique where the light shines—you guessed it—up. Fixtures designed for uplighting might be placed on the floor along the perimeter of a room or installed or mounted on walls or columns and pointed toward the ceiling. Because of this technique’s versatility, uplighting offers myriad benefits to a wide range of applications and serves as the base effect of more elaborate lighting design plans.

Benefits of Uplighting Include:

  • Creates a welcoming first impression
  • Improving visibility without risking harsh glare
  • Accentuating high ceilings, decorative architecture, and other structural details
  • Draw attention away from undesirable room features
  • Incorporating a specific color palate into a venue space
  • Adding dimension, depth, and drama
  • Enhances backdrops for better photography and video
  • Defines specific areas within the space
  • Reduces reliance on harsher ceiling lights
  • Ability to color coordinate according to theme
  • Versatile lighting control options
  • Reliable lighting quality


We’ve previously discussed the benefits of uplighting for faith facilities in Lighting Design for Houses of Worship, but it’s also beneficial in other applications such as concerts, facilities with high ceilings or architectural features (such as museums, government buildings, etc.), and special event venues. Weddings are some of the more common events that use uplighting, but any party, dance, or other special event can be a good prospect for this lighting effect.

Additionally, uplighting is a popular way to accentuate external architecture on houses or landscapes; for this application, however, it’s imperative to install weatherproof gear. Even if you’re setting up a temporary outdoor lighting setup for a special event, it’s wise to choose weather-resistant or weatherproof lighting just to be safe.


Flat surfaces (such as walls) or other blank surfaces (for example, curtain partitions) are easy to uplight using moving heads, pars, washes, or linear bar fixtures.

When adding uplighting to your space, make sure to shop for quality fixtures that will offer dependable performance without the worry of flickering or burning out. LED options are a good choice because they usually offer long, reliable operation as well as versatile color options.

Uplighting can be accomplished with white, a mixture of white and colored lights, or just colored lights, depending on what best fits your space and décor. Depending on the individual fixture, you can select or combine red, green, and blue, as well as amber and white.


Once uplighting is established how you want it in your space, you can also add other light fixtures such as pin spots, gobos, and other lighting effects to fit the occasion.

Whether you’re looking for an unobtrusive way to create a welcoming atmosphere for your environment, wanting to subtly emphasize architectural features, or craving a more flashy, personalized look for your special event, uplighting is a versatile technique that can serve as the basis for a more complex lighting design, or as a standalone effect in and of itself.

Curious about how uplighting techniques can accentuate your space, create ambiance, and personalize your special events? Contact our Account Managers at or by calling 800.203.5611 to get expert advice on what uplighting can do for your specific application.

Laura has been writing and editing copy at SoundPro since 2021. Her first experience of uplighting involved a campfire and someone holding a flashlight under their chin.