With LED’s becoming cheaper and powerful, we must stop the misuse of selection/over selection while choosing LED fixtures.

Sachin Bhargava, an Electrical Engineer, and Pooja Bhargava, a NIFT Delhi Post Graduate with a MA in lighting design from Wismar, Germany, have combined their expertise to establish a lighting control, and technology centre named Studio Johns in the vibrant city of Jaipur, India. With a background in architectural lighting products and extensive training from leading lighting companies, they offer comprehensive services in design, supply, and experiential lighting solutions. Studio Johns provides personalized guidance to stakeholders, contractors, and architects, empowering them to make informed decisions and create impactful lighting designs for their projects. 

In an exclusive Interview Sachin and Pooja Bhargava speak about their journey, their challenging projects and more …

Studio Johns is one of the most reputed companies in the industry. Can you take our readers through your journey so far…?

Studio Johns, is a technology, engineering and lighting design company. It is co-founded by Sachin Bhargava and Pooja Bhargava. Sachin Bhargava, an electrical Engineer is the technology and engineering mind, whereas Pooja is a creative soul. She is a NIFT- Delhi graduate and Master in Lighting Design (Architectural Lighting & design Management) from Wismar, Germany.

We started the company in 2002. One day world renowned architect Dr Anoop Baratria called us in his office in 2016 and asked us, if we would be interested in lighting the world’s first heritage walkway in Amritsar. We, immediately grabbed the opportunity and there was on looking back.

Today, we boast an experienced team to ensure good design, better installations and best results.

Can you mention some of the landmark projects you worked on, which have been a turning point in your career in terms of experimenting with new lighting techniques/designs or introducing innovative concepts?

In, 2016 we designed, supplied and commissioned the world’s longest heritage walkway- 1km heritage walk in Amritsar. It is from Town Hall to Jaliawalabagh to Darbar Sahab) Golden Temple. 

In 2022, we designed and completed India’s first outdoor museum on ‘Constitution of India’ in the beautiful Pink City- Jaipur. In 2023, Architectural lighting of 3KM of world’s longest heritage riverfront on either side of Chambal Riverfront.

Both the public places projects have been ahead in terms of lighting and have been carefully lit up without the use of flood, making each facade low voltage consumption, darkness friendly, well-planned, and better installed

What are your views on the importance of Lighting Design in a project?

Lighting Design is a subject poorly implemented in India as the awareness is still low within communities and stakeholders. With LED’s becoming cheaper and powerful, we must stop the misuse of selection/over selection while choosing LED fixtures. Let’s not look at wattage but lumens output from a fixture while selecting.

Secondly, public places should not be flooded/over lit up. We are losing the night view of skies from the city because of over lighting. Not everything needs to be switched ON every day and every night hour. Automation should be used to plan the timings of these facades. 

Thirdly, I feel there should be a guideline for lighting up the facades in the city. The facade belongs to the city. The city needs to have a theme ‘vision’. Lighting designer should align their designs to the theme/vision of the city.

Every government project should have a lighting designer on board before executing a project.

What is the biggest innovation in the lighting sector? How has it revolutionized the entire industry?

Well, innovation is a continuous process. We see the changes every month in LEDs, allowing the fixtures to be super small yet powerful. There is a lot of growth in linear fixtures as they are futuristic design. Controls have become wireless and the entire package of lighting and control have a lot to offer in terms of innovative design.

As a Lighting Designer, which lighting control brands do you prefer?   

So, for us each project and application have a futuristic, easy to use brand. For example, when we do-residences, we love to play with KNX using JUNG switches, wireless using CASAMBI. In case of large project installation like a public place we use Schneider/ABB for KNX, CASAMBI for wireless and MADRIX for DMX.

What are your views on the Smart lighting industry? According to you, in which sector (hospitality, commercial, residential), is traditional lighting getting rapidly replaced by smart lighting?

Smart lighting is the need of the hour. It finds usage in every sector, every application on every day basis. With power becoming expensive, sustainability becoming a challenge it is the need of the hour for government to act and Implement/mandate specifications for complete and holistic implementation of Smart Lighting Controls at least in public places in India.

If we have to live with “Ease of living” becoming a norm in India by 2047, there needs to be documents prepared, vision boards made by the government for SMART LIGHTNING.

For the second part of the question, larger spaces, bigger installations will always be more beneficial and viable financially if smart lighting is implemented.

Unfortunately, I don’t see much happening on the ground level as the tender are not prepared with guidelines in mind.

How do you foresee the Smart Lighting Industry 5 years down the line in India?

Five years down the line…

  • The ‘Make in India’ initiatives will be present. There will be at least +30 more companies into manufacturing.
  • Complete manufacturing, including diffusers and chips will start within the country.
  • Indian lighting standards, city vision documents/guidelines would be laid out.
  • BSR of government bodies will be more elaborate smart and sustainable in terms of specifications.
  • Every electrical circuit will have some sort of automation.
  • Applications will increase, light business will increase but quantitative installation per square feet will reduce and become meaningful.

Human Centric Lighting (HCL) is a futuristic trend in the lighting industry with health and mental wellness being the top benefits. What are your views on the same?  

All living things responded to light in a different way. Human Centric Light will find application in most of the environment spaces working in 24 hours of day. I feel, it will enhance productivity and have better mental and health impact on living things.

However, controls, AI and overall space and location will also play an equal and dynamic role while designing futures spaces.

As the smart lighting market is fragmented into various segments – such as type, applications, end-users, and distribution channel, how does Studio Johns provide the best lighting solutions that suit consumer needs?

Unlike a lot of others, we are a team of engineers, First and designer Second. So, to say that our stress on controls, drawings, implementation, commissioning is far more time-consuming because of a vast experience in controls, education in lighting design and a complete team to ensure end-to-end feel that our designs have far more impact than those who only design.

Our designs always have comprehensive technical parameters to match heritage, modern/ facade goals.  Our team is well-trained with manufacturer’s design, files and renders.

I began with saying we are technology, engineering and lighting company. We are in continuous hunt and in huger to adopt technologies, use AI, Controls Media as to opt for designs out of the box to create, showcase mesmerising experiences. 

So, we are leading and growing every year. We want to be recognised for meaningful designs.

We love to add emotions and culture into installations. We want to design to have foot prints in every state of India and beyond.

Finally, we want to make an impact and contribution in the making of “Developed Bharat” ensuring and preserving our culture & heritage in the coming years.

What we show as render is what we deliver.

From Street light poles, bollards to Architectural Lighting, we do all AutoCAD, renders, Dialux, 3-D, VR in house.

Tell us about the user experience with IoT and AI automation systems as the future of Smart Lighting 

The idea of showcasing, IOT and AI at the booth was to make people experience the power and usage of AI and understand futuristic concept. AI is a game changer and opens a pandora box to unlimited application and usage.

Future belongs to control and engineering, lighting will only be a product to be consumed in these applications. The mind-blowing application we display with immersiveness and instructiveness were a true delight to the user. And this is just, beginning…

As I said earlier lighting and controls go hand-in-hand. It’s like a marriage, good design smart system will only work if both lights and controls are smart and understand each other.

Although, I see a lot of crossing in this domain, these days, where light suppliers are also in control integration. So, both roles are equally important and are depending on each other.

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