Meet Lydia Simpson, lighting design intern in Mazzetti’s Atlanta Office.
How did you get started in Lighting Design?
I was a theatre kid in high school and got into lighting by accident; I didn’t get cast in a show and they asked if I would want to run the lightboard instead. I fell in love with it. When I started college, I was unsure of what major I wanted to pursue. I ended up transferring schools to one in my hometown with a great theater program and decided to pursue theater. Coincidentally, my dad was the photographer for the theater program, so I had grown up seeing their shows. After some health issues, I realized I wouldn’t be able to do theater long-term. In one of my classes, a guest artist visited and spoke about architectural lighting design. I thought about studying neuroscience to focus on lighting’s impact on mood and health and how different lighting conditions affect the brain. I finished my theater lighting design degree but wanted to dive deeper into architectural lighting design, so I am pursuing my master’s at Parsons School of Design. My thesis looks at green lighting for migraines.
Why is Lighting Design at Mazzetti a good fit?
Lighting design is a good fit for me because I never thought of myself as right-brained or left-brained. I am both and lighting involves science AND design. I wrote my Parsons application essay on lighting in children’s hospitals based on my own experiences with illness and hospitalization. My experiences showed me the discrepancies in healthcare design between more expensive private facilities and public facilities. Additionally, In the past I researched and worked on turtle safe lighting, and I am extremely interested in light as a healing source.
What influences your design?
My design process has been influenced greatly by my theater experience and crafting hobbies. I sew, knit, resin craft, woodwork, etc. and find working with textures beneficial to my lighting design.
I was attracted to Mazzetti because it is a benefit corporation with an emphasis on sustainability. I make efforts to live my own life sustainably including making some of my own clothing. I also value Mazzetti’s work with the Northeast Georgia Health System as it is close to home, where I was born, and where I have been hospitalized in the past.
What are your interests outside of Lighting?
I always have to be working on something. I am currently knitting a tank top for the summer and sewing a skirt. I also spend a lot of time with my boyfriend and dog.