Understanding The Emotional And Behavioural Responses Evoked By Architecture


These days, most of us spend a lot of time indoors. Whether we are at the office working, visiting a local library, or attending an event, the vast majority of today’s activities take place indoors. Because of that, many of us have fallen into the trap of thinking of buildings only from the point of view of functionality. The interior spaces usually take priority in our minds, while the exterior architecture often gets overlooked or ignored.As it turns out, however, the architecture of the buildings where we spend time is extremely important. Architecture can not only affect how we work but also how we feel.

architectural responses

Source : media.architecturaldigest.com 

Factors like light and geometry, material choices, and the overall use of the space can all affect how we feel inside a particular building. The emotional aspects of architecture aren’t just imagined, either. Researchers have found that the space surrounding us affects the way that certain cells behave in the hippocampal area of the brain.What is it about architecture that creates emotional responses? What tools do architects and designers use when they are trying to solicit a particular emotion in the people who view the buildings or spend time inside them?

The Height Of The Ceilings

architectural responses

Source : home-designing.com

Ceiling height is something that most people don’t pay a lot of attention to. As it turns out, however, the distance that separates the top of your head from the tallest part of the room can affect not only the way that you think but also the actions that you take. For instance, art studios often have high ceilings. This is because having more space above you can promote greater creativity and more free-flowing thought patterns. Conversely, buildings with low ceilings tend to promote a greater sense of focus. That is why ceilings are low in operating rooms and other places where extreme attention to detail is required.

Also Read : List Of Architecture Firms In Dubai

The View From The Building

architectural responses

Source : capalino.com

Windows provide views of the outside world. Whether you are at work or somewhere else, the scenery that you see through your windows can have a big impact on how easy it is for you to focus. Interestingly, views that include natural elements like trees, shrubs, or open fields promote greater focus. Being able to see a natural environment when you look out the window can go a long way toward improving your focus and concentration.

If your window looks out onto an urban environment, on the other hand, you are more likely to be distracted. These settings tend to be a lot busier, which can overstimulate your mind, making it more difficult to focus.

The Color Of The Interior

architectural responses

Source : cdn.freshome.com

Being exposed to different colors can have a profound effect on your mood and your emotions. A great example of this can be seen in restaurants. Sit-down restaurants where you are encouraged to spend time enjoying your meal typically are designed with warm, welcoming colors. They usually are also softly lit. On the other hand, fast food restaurants and other places where you are encouraged to rush when you are eating typically have much harsher lighting.

Different colors can evoke different moods. As an example, rooms that are decorated in shades of blue tend to be serene and relaxing. Using orange, on the other hand, creates a stimulating environment where people are more likely to feel enthusiastic. The color green can be used to help counteract stress.

The Interior Lighting

architectural responses

Source : static.telegraphindia.com

The intensity and color of the lighting inside the space can affect the way that we feel. Lights that are extremely bright, for instance, can have either a positive or negative impact, depending on the circumstances. The color of the lighting also comes into play. Lighting with a blue undertone increases energy and alertness. That makes it the ideal choice for situations where tasks need to be finished in a timely manner.

There are a number of benefits associated with natural lighting, as well. Workers who spend their time in environments with a lot of natural sunlight generally enjoy a greater sense of well-being than workers that work in areas where there is no natural light. Natural light can also affect the way that you sleep by supporting the natural circadian rhythms of your body. The amount of light in a space can help our bodies understand when we are supposed to be awake and when we are supposed to be asleep.

architectural responses

Source : certified-lighting.com

The area where the light is positioned can also affect the way that you feel. If the lighting is located higher than eye level, it tends to create a setting that is a lot more formal. Lighting that is lower than eye level, on the other hand, creates a more casual environment. Lights that are positioned on the ceiling or on the walls can help create a more spacious feeling. Alternatively, keeping the lights down low with unlit areas can make a space feel more intimate.

Building Façades

architectural responses

Source : specialtyfabricsreview.com

The way that a building looks from the outside can also come into play when determining your mood or how you respond to it emotionally. Beautifully designed buildings that are attractive tend to create an instant sense of happiness. On the other hand, buildings that are unattractive or that feature poor design can make you feel uneasy or unhappy. Most people respond positively to building façades that are complex in terms of their design. Plain, boring façades, on the other hand, are less likely to elicit a positive emotional response.

architectural responses

Source : stuckeyconstruction.com

In some cases, the outside of the building can even increase stress levels. Standing outside of an imposing skyscraper, for instance, could make someone feel more stressed. These results were discovered in a study conducted by Colin Ellard, a renowned environmental psychologist. He discovered that commuters moved quickly past areas where large, unattractive or unadorned buildings were located. Being surrounded by buildings like these on a long-term basis can have a detrimental effect. People who continually spend time in drab settings like these can experience increased stress levels and sometimes even are more likely to participate in high-risk behavior.

As a general rule of thumb, exposure to buildings that are more attractive or more elegant is much more positive when it comes to the effect that it has on the mood and emotions.

Interior Spaces

architectural responses

Source : static1.squarespace.com

The way that the inside of the building is designed can also affect how people feel when they spend time inside of it. Designers can take advantage of this to create a building that has a specific effect on the feelings and emotions of the people who visit it.

When designing an interior space, the purpose of the space needs to be taken into consideration. Designers can then create settings that are well suited to the type of work that is being done inside. Ideally, building interiors should incorporate a variety of different spaces that are designed for different purposes. Designers and architects face a number of challenges when creating these spaces. Along with budgetary limits and legal restrictions on design, they also have to find the best way to marry both form and function within a space.

villa J2
Beautiful Villa J2 by Jonas Lindvall

Architect Jonas Lindvall from Sweden has designed an exquisite fashionable home with excellent unbelievable features...