Enhancing the look of your backyard with outdoor lighting can change the overall atmosphere of your home. Installing lighting fixtures outside your home requires minimum effort since all you need are the basic lighting techniques to get you going. Making use of the right lighting techniques allows you to accentuate the main features of your garden and make it a great place for special occasions and events.

Among the many methods used by professional lighting installers in placing external lighting, it is important to keep in mind that you should pick out a technique that would properly highlight the main features that you want to bring to attention and minimize the features that you want to mesh into the background.

A popular technique is the method called silhouetting. In silhouetting, the lights are aimed at a flat surface behind the subject that you want to emphasize. This gives the effect of a sun setting behind the subject.

The second technique used in outdoor lighting is cross lighting. This method uses numerous directional lighting with their rays aligned to crisscross each other. This creates gentle shadows randomly highlighting different features.

Shadowing is another lighting technique used in outdoor lighting. While in silhouetting the lights are placed behind the subjects, in shadowing the lights are placed in front of them. This emphasizes the object so that the shade is directed to a flat surface to the back.

The fourth technique is called spot lighting. In this method, the lighting is also installed in front of the subject but at a proper distance to fully highlight it. Spot lighting creates great effect on garden figures, unique plant shapes and fountains. This method can also be used for highlighting seating areas. To draw attention to benches, the light should be lowered to give the area an inviting look. This also keeps the light from hitting the seated person's eyes directly.

Spread lighting is the fifth lighting method you can use for your external lighting. This type of lighting draws attention to the ground and other low standing features. Spread lighting can bring beautiful flower beds to life during dark hours. To install spread lighting successfully, you should purchase lighting fixtures that can be turned, lifted and lowered easily as it may take a lot of trial and error before you can actually achieve the needed effect.