The Bright Ideas Blog

Design inspiration and outdoor lighting tips and advice for homeowners

How to Choose the Right Landscape Lighting Fixtures

Adding landscape lighting to a property is a simple way to enhance all aspects. Lighting brings the home and its outdoor living spaces to an entirely new level. The hard part about landscape lighting is knowing which fixtures to put where! Each fixture creates a different output of light and can make it a challenge to know which fixture should be used to light all the different aspects of the home.

This is simple guide on how to choose the right landscape lighting fixtures for different areas that are in need of outdoor lighting.

Up lights 

Up lights are great for adding dimension to a multitude of areas and elements of your home’s exterior. An uplight is a fixture that is mounted below or at the base of what needs lit and shines the light upward. Where should up lights be used? 


Up lights are perfect for illuminating the architecture of your home. Architectural lighting allows you to accentuate the beauty of your home even at night. By simply installing up lights to the home’s architecture, you immediately increase both curb appeal and safety to the home and property as a whole. 

Another architectural element up lights are great for is fountains or statues on your property. Lighting at the base of a fountain or statue can create a very dramatic and gorgeous feel to the monument. In the same way, adding uplighting to trees, like a Japanese Maple, can highlight all the unique features of the tree, while at the same time adding that level of dimension to the property. 

If you have a retaining wall along the perimeter of your property, this is a perfect place for uplighting. When you add uplighting along the base of the wall, it helps to eliminate any dark holes in the back of your property, making it hard for trespassers to go unseen! A simple and easy way to add a level of security to the perimeter of your property. 

Down lights 

Down lights are fixtures that can be mounted high up onto architecture or in large trees. They cast a soft, natural light down to illuminate the space below. This lighting technique is great for those looking to create a beautiful moonlight feel to their property. Where are down lights best used?


Down lights are a great option for illuminating outdoor dining and sitting spaces. So often we aren’t able to use outdoor dining and sitting areas after the sun goes down. Incorporating down lights extends the use of the outdoor living space because you are able to actually see your plate when eating, or simply be able to see and visit with those around you! 

Another place where down lights can be helpful is on driveways and walkways. Since they are mounted high up in nearby trees or on the architecture of the home, it casts light over the entire area creating safety for those coming to and from the home. An added bonus of down lights is the shadows that are created from the leaves and surrounding landscape. It can add a beautiful display directly onto the drive or walk. 

Path lights 

The most common lighting fixture when it comes to landscape lighting is the path light. Path lights are those fixtures with the little hat that redirects the light downward onto a path or walkway. Whether that path is the sidewalk leading to the home’s entrance, or one leading to an outdoor living space in the back of the home, path lights provide the perfect amount of light for those walking the path to ensure safety. Can path lights be used in other areas of a property aside from paths? 


The answer is yes! Although path lights are best know for illuminating walkways and paths, they can be successfully used in a few other areas. One of these areas is steps and staircases on a property. Path lights add both safety and function to the stairs. They allow you and your guests to navigate the stairs with ease because you are able to see each step as you take it. Landscape lighting often cast shadows from the neighboring landscape or stones, adding a bonus depth of beauty that is not thought about before adding light to the steps!

In some situations, path lights are great for pool decks. Although the best way to utilize path lights in a pool deck is in conjunction with other fixtures, there are a few ways they are useful. If you have a step on your pool deck, incorporating a path light next to that step is the perfect way to keep you and guest swimmers safe while swimming at night. Placing a path light along the perimeter of the pool deck is another simple way to bring function and light to the pool deck. It illuminates exactly where the pool deck ends and the yard begins, helping those trekking from the pool back to the house. 

Are you looking for a professional lighting design? 

If you are looking for a professional to help with your landscape lighting installation, request a consultation here! Let our designers create not only a functional property, but one that highlights the beauty of your home even at night. 

At Landscape Lighting Pro, the art of outdoor illumination is a real passion we work to perfect. Designing elegantly bespoke landscape lighting systems is simply all we do. For over 15 years, our award winning team of designers and craftsmen have striven to bring the best outdoor lighting experience possible to people's homes and businesses across the Wasatch Front & beyond. 

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Landscape Lighting Fixtures | Outdoor Lighting