top of page
Turning shadow to typography: an interactive typographic installation inspired by Art Deco Architecture of New York



2023. 02-03




Research, Laser cutting, 

Typeface design, installation design

Project Type

Experimental Design, typographic installation

Tool/ Materials


Acrylic sheets

Laser cutting

Design Awards


NewOne Awards

Overview: what is CARPE DIEM?

CARPE DIEM is an interactive typographic installation that aspire to encourage people to explore and appreciate the present. The immortal line "Carpe diem, seize the day, make your lives extraordinary!" from the film Dead Poets Society has inspired many individuals, including myself. This Latin phrase encourages me to live in the present and take action without hesitation. It is a reminder that whatever you need to do, do it now. Don't wait until tomorrow because tomorrow holds no certainty. Who knows what will happen? However, it's easy to get caught up in other people's expectations and lose sight of our goals. We may feel guilty and ashamed for not living up to our full potential, which can lead to procrastination and negative habits.


As a designer, I have created an installation inspired by New York's Art Deco architecture that reminds me and others to dream big and pursue what is valuable to us. This installation features three-dimensional geometric shapes that gradually shift into a flat shadow image, allowing the audience to interrupt the main focus by moving the lights. Viewers walking around the piece will see different shadows projected onto the surrounding walls. These resulting shadow shapes create silhouettes of the words "CARPE DIEM."


This project aims to inspire people to explore and appreciate the present and make the most of it. In our current twenty-first century lives, it’s not easy. Life is fleeting, and this is a not-so-subtle reminder to enjoy your life because time is passing.

Inspiration:  where I draw the inspirations from

"Carpe diem, seize the day, make your lives extraordinary!"   - Dead Poets Society

carpe diem for wix portfolio.jpg

New York City is a concrete jungle where dreams are made of and blessed with internationally known architectural gems and museums. For us designers, it's a paradise. I'm one of millions of people who have found inspiration in this city. 'CARPE DIEM' was inspired by the art modern period which contains distinguished iconic Art Deco architecture of New York and its typeface designs that embodies elegance and strength.

carpe diem for wix portfolio.jpg

Art deco architectures in NYC

carpe diem for wix portfolio.jpg

Iconic New York City colors

carpe diem for wix portfolio.jpg

Art deco style typeface

Lights and shadows

Design Progress
carpe diem for wix portfolio.png
carpe diem for wix portfolio.png
carpe diem for wix portfolio.png
carpe diem for wix portfolio.png
carpe diem for wix portfolio.png
carpe diem for wix portfolio.png

Almost any means and almost anything can serve as inspiration for crafting typography. To capture the silhouette of 'carpe diem' generated by shadow on wall, I sketched and experimented with various cutting techniques, materials, and lightings.

Screenshot 2023-11-12 at 3.50.43 PM.png

Lighting Test on Rhino


Final design file

Sequence 01_1.gif

Laser engraving patterns

Sequence 01.gif

Laser cutting out shapes


Final Assembly

IMG_9974 copy.JPG

Interact with lights and shadows

Final Installation
Final Product
carpe diem_01_Integrated.jpg
carpe diem_02_Integrated.jpg
bottom of page