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This clever lamp uses surgeon’s tech to eliminate annoying shadows

Balmuda’s $540 The Light doesn’t create shadows or glare.

This clever lamp uses surgeon’s tech to eliminate annoying shadows
[Photo: Balmuda]

There are few things that bother me more than bad lighting–in the living room, the kitchen, and especially when I’m working at a desk. When I’m drawing, I’m annoyed to no end when shadows obscure my work surface or, worse, the light casts a glare. It makes me irrationally angry. If you’re an artist, a designer, or an armchair dabbler, I’m sure you can relate.

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Enter The Light, a lamp designed for illustrators and designers. According to its inventors, it uses surgeon’s lamp technology to eliminate both shadows and glare from your work area.

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For obvious reasons, surgeons require full illumination, minimum shadows, and no glare in the eyes. Their lights are designed just for that purpose, using lenses to redirect light at the right angles to create a wide and intense illumination area exclusively focused on the patient, without bathing the entire surgical theater with blinding, irritating light.

But as you probably know, common desk lamps–like the classic L-1 by Luxo–don’t do that. They usually come with an omnidirectional bulb that is partially blocked by a shade. If you want illumination over a wide area, you have to raise it over your eye level, which produces glare. And if you get it under your eye level, you get a reduced illumination area and hard shadows.

[Photo: Balmuda]
That changes with The Light–created by Japanese high-end appliance company Balmuda. The light uses the same Light Emitting Diodes and lenses set at the same angles as the lamps used in surgical theaters. Balmuda’s lamp diffuses the light outward at a wide angle, even while the lamp is under your eye line to avoid any glare. The wide angle diffusion allows for a large illumination area and minimal shadows. These are optimal lighting conditions for any kind of detail work that requires long hours on a desk–like illustration or drafting.

The design comes with a drawing utensil holder on its base, which also holds the lamps’ dimming control. Practical! But it’ll cost you: The lamp clocks in at $540, significantly more than the Ikea task lamp you’ve had since college, but roughly comparable to the higher-end models you’d find at Design Within Reach.

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Balmuda has other beautiful and equally pricey smart inventions like The Toaster, a $220 compact toaster that can preserve the moisture in your bread as it toasts, and The Pot, a $130 electric kettle designed specifically for pour-over coffee.

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About the author

Jesus Diaz founded the new Sploid for Gawker Media after seven years working at Gizmodo, where he helmed the lost-in-a-bar iPhone 4 story. He's a creative director, screenwriter, and producer at The Magic Sauce and a contributing writer at Fast Company.

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