Eleanor Connolly

Royal College of Art, London.

Eleanor was named joint winner of the fourth annual Jonathan Speirs Scholarship in 2016/17.

Her passion for light stems from the belief that unique conditions of light are responsible for how we engage and experience our surroundings. Her post-graduate work explores the idea of colour perception as a consequence of light reacting to surface formation and shifts in observation. Most recently she has designed a theoretical museum in which Exhibition Road, South Kensington becomes itself the exhibit. Visitors following the trajectory of the street dwell in zones of curated light – both natural and artificial – that create a ‘flow experience’, revealing colour through architectural structure, façade materiality and lighting design.

Examples of Eleanor’s Work


Martyna Marciniak

Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London.

Martyna was named joint winner of the fourth annual Jonathan Speirs Scholarship in 2016/17.

She believes that light is both a generator of atmosphere, and highly influential to the human condition. During the course of her studies to date she has focused on the contribution of light to wellbeing and health, including a competition winning entry for the Hospital Extension in Poznan, Poland. This project maximised the use of natural light in order to improve both healing and mood, achieved by the use of light wells and a customisable light filtration system of metal shutters. Her designs also focus on unique narrative and experiential spaces. Her latest work uses light as a vector in design, via time based self-regulating light sequences that interact with form and materiality to create atmospheric moments.

Examples of Martyna’s Work


Charlotte Eley

University of Sheffield.

Charlotte was named the third winner of the Jonathan Speirs Scholarship in 2015/16.

The judges were impressed by the maturity and sensitivity of Charlotte’s application, which conveyed her passion for the potential within architecture and lighting to tackle large social issues such as inclusivity, crime prevention and community cohesion. As Charlotte explains: “I believe good lighting design should be accessible to all, being designed and provided for all members of society, from school children to the homeless. Each of my architecture projects at university has tackled different issues of lighting, including crime prevention and inclusion, the tyranny of commercial supermarket lighting and the role of lighting in creating spiritual environments at the end of life.”

John Roake, Chairman of the JSSF commented:

We are delighted to present the third JSSF scholarship to Charlotte Eley. We all agreed that Charlotte’s work is representative of a growing movement in the fields of architecture and lighting design, where priority is given to considering ways in which designers can help dramatically improve the lives of those who often do not have immediate access to well thought-through, practical and sustainable solutions. It was her social responsibility which shone through which we thought made her deserving of support and encouragement.

Examples of Charlotte’s Work


Cashel F. L. Brown

Edinburgh Napier University.

Cashel was named the second winner of the Jonathan Spears Scholarship in 2014/15.

Chairman of the JSSF John Roake spoke on behalf of the Trustees of the Jonathan Speirs Scholarship Fund:

We are delighted to have made this second award. Whilst the selection process was every bit as demanding as our inaugural award in 2013, it was a unanimous decision to offer a scholarship to Cashel Brown. As a graduate architect who is now engaged in a postgraduate course in lighting design, Cashel absolutely represents the quality and type of student this award was originally aimed at. We have no doubt that the financial support will help him immensely as he makes his way in his chosen profession as a Lighting Designer.

Cashel Brown commented:

“I feel extremely privileged to have received the second Jonathan Speirs Scholarship, and intend to use the opportunity to fuel my passion for lighting design.”

Examples of Cashel’s Work


Alex Stewart

Parsons The New School For Design.

Alex Stewart was announced the winner of the inaugural Jonathan Spears Scholarship in 2013/14.

He comments: “The benefits since I received the scholarship have been numerous and varied. The recognition through assorted publications has provided a platform for conversation with lighting professionals, and an opportunity to engage with the profession in very unique way. The scholarship money has provided an incredible boost, not just in terms of financial loan mitigation, but also in assisting with material and model exploration. Because of this, I have been able to take on a prestigious internship without the burden of financial concern.”

Examples of Alex’s Work