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Playful light objects

Moonlights are interactive wall luminaires designed to endorse tactile relation between users and the object. They come in three different sizes, and each one having two sets of light emitting diodes. One set for the front light and the second set for the backlight. They light up and dim inversely proportional.

The original concept design was rewarded with the Red Dot: Best Of The Best 2014 award. The series is now a permanent feature in the Red Dot Museum in Singapore, as part of the exhibition named “A Preview of the Future”.

The interaction

Designing interaction gestures with an object is a no easy task. We had countless versions and iterations. It is not only to think of gestures that would most people find intuitive without reading any instructions. But also all the fine details of the objects response to the gesture. How fast should the light change? After what amount of time should lights start to shift, after a person lays a finger on it? Human senses are so delicate that fractions of the second makes a difference. After dozens of tests and iterations, we settled on the following gestures:

one finger tap for step-by-step increase/decrease
double tap for a full front/back light
finger hold for a slow automated crossfade

The technology

The uniform light distribution in the front panel is achieved with the Light Guide Panel technology. Several layers of acrylic plastic and diffusor films are stacked together to uniformly distribute the light. Acrylic panels are laser etched in a custom uneven pattern, that helps scatter the light rays coming from the LEDs sitting on the outer rim.

The light switching was initially made with mechanical dimmers in the early prototypes. The latest series has a capacitive sensor built-in behind the aluminum, which reacts to human touch. The processor transforms that contact into light play, while a bluetooth module gives the possibility of remote control via the iOS app.


This project was created in the Oblikus Design Studio with a list of external collaborator of different professions. Below are images from various stages of product development, prototyping and testing.

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