Chameleon Light Concept

Final Design Show | Bournemouth University

Chameleon Light was a final year design project focusing on the application of light to enhance a social setting.


An ambient lighting product that is designed to interact with the environment and users through chaining form and light; utilising colour, space and visual aesthetics. With inspiration taken from research into changes in nature as well as bioluminescence light. To bring the room inwards making it more intimate, primal and sociable. Incorporating both social mood and visual metamorphosis in nature into a lighting product; which changes subtly via human interaction.This report will establish the problem though to solution addressing concept, detail and CAD justification.

Design Problem

The context for the light is too produce an alternative ambient light that is at first glance not apparent of being a light source. A light that then interacts with the user and surroundings creating a social atmosphere. The client is a middle aged high end user looking for a lighting product to incorporate into their minimilistic, modern and art centric living interior; with particular emphasis on social mood. The clients requirements are for the light to be ambient, subtle, interactive, artistic and transforming. Client seeks a key feature lighting piece which creates a relaxed social atmosphere and mood whilst displaying an interesting visual form. Surroundings are minimilsitic, modern and spacious with attention to art pieces.


The creation of the chameleon light addresses the brief given by the client by combing an ambient lighting product with the changing form inspired by metamorphosis. The lights form is inspired from metamorphosis and physical change in nature. Initial concepts and research led to the rounded form an armadillo creates when curled up. Taking the change an armadillo makes using the spherical form allowed the basis of the light to ‘uncurl’ and change from day to night.

The transition of the light from day to night provides the user with an artistic sculptured form disguised light during the day and then changing to an ambient glowing orb at night. During the daytime it reflects natural light off of polished steel surface. When user is hosting or has guests they are able to trigger a motion sensor to slowly reveal the hidden light to users, creating surprise and intrigue. The low ambient light source pulls room inwards towards the centre forcing guests to use their familiar instinct of gathering around a fire. This creates a more intimate and social environment. The light subtly effects the surroundings through low light, colour and form.


A turquoise light has been chosen for the colouring of the product to achieve a natural bioluminescent glow. Colour theory also suggests that turquoise signifies open communication, relaxation and intensity of experience which is ideal in affecting social behaviour. A mixture of green, blue and white LED’s have been used to create  the turquoise glow in the centre orb whilst LED strips are used in the surrounding glass tube.

The effect of the combination of colour and light is to give a sense of nature, specifically bioluminescence, seen in jellyfish and fireflies. They also utilise the low ambient glow to focus towards centre of the room creating an intimate and primeval social setting.

To trigger the change from day to night the light has a motion sensor and belt inside the inner casing. The user would move their hand over the sensor initiating the change by making the casing slide round into the base revealing the second glass tube. The LED and LED strip would then turn on creating the turquoise glow.