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Designing with Light Educational Series

In-house CEU Structured Learning for Architects

This program is currently being offered by webcast.
Click here to request a seminar for your firm.

In the highly competitive world of architecture, every element of added value counts. Lighting is a critical tool in the Architect's arsenal that, when used correctly, can distinguish their work.

Gottesman Associates is pleased to offer lighting seminars delivered by award-winning lighting designer and educator Deborah Gottesman. These seminars will inspire architects to see how lighting can meet project goals while raising the bar of design.

Topics span current lighting issues such as sustainable design/Net Zero, LEDs & controls, and how to integrate it all into the overall design process. The level of seminars ranges from Beginner to Advanced.

Inquire to bring a seminar to your office!

About the seminars

To Light or Not to Light:
Developing Lighting Concepts
How Low Can We Go?
The OAA Headquarters' Journey to Net Zero
Technology to Specification and Procedurement:
Get the Lighting You Want

To Light, or Not To Light: Developing Lighting Concepts

What is lighting design, and why does focusing on lighting layouts fall short?

1hr, All Levels

Lighting layouts are not the same as lighting design. Quality lighting design begins with concept development - a form of programming for the visual environment that considers many elements such as perception, contrast, and visibility. This seminar outlines the steps taken on various diverse projects to address those essentials and create the desired mood, atmosphere, and functionality.

The case studies span different sectors, from heritage to retail to residential, and identify the range of challenges that good design can help overcome, with many universal lessons.

    At the end of the seminar, attendees will:

  • appreciate the link between the overall project goals and the ultimate lighting layout,
  • grasp what it means to light with intention, and
  • understand the critical stages where lighting design fits into the overall project design process.
Inquire to bring this seminar to your office!

Based on material presented to the OAA Annual conference 2013, OCAD University and Conestoga College.

"...extremely knowledgeable and interactive... her professionalism and level of expertise in lighting was very beneficial and complementary to our program curriculum..."

-Conestoga College

"Very knowledgeable presenter with a comfortable and friendly style"

-OAA conference Attendee

How Low Can We Go? The OAA Headquarters' Journey to Net Zero

Can extreme energy efficiency meet good design in lighting, and is it cost effective?

1hr, All Levels

Is it possible to achieve net-zero and maintain good design? Energy efficiency is often equated with strictly engineered solutions and utilitarian approaches that sacrifice aesthetics. This does not have to be the case.

The OAA HQ building is currently striving to become one of Canada's first Net-Zero buildings, and will serve as a case study to illustrate attractive, workable and cost-effective solutions while maintaining the architectural integrity of the building.

This seminar demystifies how to effectively incorporate the free light of the sun. We begin with the daylight modelling (Advanced level spends more time here), followed by the impact on electrical lighting design and the lighting control strategy. The learning is rounded out by a detailed look at the financial implications to answer the question: Is it really worth it?

    At the end of the seminar, attendees will:

  • Understand the value of daylight modelling and how it informs electrical lighting, lighting controls, and glare control,
  • Recognize the value of the integrated design process, and
  • Realize the possibility of achieving extreme energy efficiency without compromising aesthetics.
Inquire to bring this seminar to your office!

Based on material presented at IIDEX 2014 and the OAA 2030+ Series.

"This was the best session yet! Thank-you!."
"Very useful information. Great job!"
"This is the kind of course that should be taught."

-OAA 2030+ Series attendees

"Excellent presentation!"
"Good responses to audience questions."

-IIDEX attendees

Technology to Specifications and Procurement: Get the Lighting You Want

Why is it so difficult to get what you want when it comes to lighting?

1 hr, Intermediate level

Why is it so difficult to get what you want when it comes to lighting?

Architects' common grievances include that fixture technology is confusing, lighting controls don't work as expected, and the procurement process seems mired in mystery. The good news is that this doesn't have to be the case, and this seminar will help you make sense of it.

First, we will deconstruct the industry, the players and their roles. Who adds value? What does the lighting distributor do? Where does the money go?

Then we will navigate through the design process. How does one prepare an accurate lighting budget? The causes of unpredictable results, from colour shifting to cost overruns, will be uncovered and resolved.

Finally, the seminar will launch a bold new approach to procurement with two case studies that unlock the mystery and illustrate how you can, indeed, get what you want.

    At the end of the seminar, attendees will:

  • develop an understanding of the lighting industry and where to find added value,
  • discover new steps that enable complete and coordinated construction packages,
  • learn about the importance of an accurate lighting budget, and how to avoid value engineering, and
  • be exposed to a different model for procurement.
Inquire to bring this seminar to your office!

Based on material presented at the Alberta and Ontario Association of Architects (AAA, OAA),

"Great! Well prepared & informative!"

-AAA attendee

Seminar rated "good" to "excellent" by 100% of attendees


Deborah Gottesman, P.Eng., MBA, LC, Assoc.IALD

Deborah Gottesman is the principal of Gottesman Associates, an award-winning architectural lighting design firm established in 1999, with distinctive expertise in sustainability and heritage applications. Deborah's 25+ years in all facets of the lighting industry, including design, engineering, management, education, and manufacturing gives her a unique contextual understanding of lighting from all perspectives.

Deborah has successfully worked on projects in many sectors and has taught lighting at all levels to a wide audience from students to senior architects. A past president of the Toronto Section IES, Deborah has been involved in the IES at local, regional, and international levels, and was awarded the Toronto Section Service Award in 2013.

"At Gottesman Associates, we balance all facets of light to reflect the lighting priorities that are unique to each client and project."

CEU Seminar Inquiry Form

    Seminars are offered at no cost if:
  • you are located in the greater Toronto area and provide the venue,
  • a minimum of 10 people will attend, and
  • at least 25% of attendees will be firm Principals or Senior Associates.

Please complete this form to request a seminar
or call 416-520-4480.

Please suggest up to three dates.

Seminar(s) of interest:

Developing Lighting Concepts: To Light, or Not To Light
Sustainable Design: How Low Can We Go?
Heritage Lighting: Bringing the Past to Light
Reconstructing the Business of Light: A Sweeping Response to LEDs
Technology to Specifications and Procurement: Get the Lighting You Want

What presentation equiptment is available?

Projector and Screen (VGA connection)
HD Monitor (HDMI connection)

Expected number of:

Principals or Sr. Associates: Other attendees:

Are you interested in having the seminar sponsored by a lighting supplier who can provide breakfast, lunch or snacks with a 10 minute product presentation?