To create a single piece, Lihan first creates a detailed charcoal sketch, which she then enlarges and uses as a template for her intricate carvings. She cuts out all of the paper details by hand with an Exacto knife, and then layers the pieces of unpainted watercolor paper together to form the three-dimensional structures. She says that, quite the opposite of a trained architect, she prefers to eyeball the construction until she achieves the proper perspective. The final product is generally anywhere from 2 to 6 inches deep and placed in a shadowbox for display. Through a lengthy process of trimming, bending, folding, and adjusting the paper pieces, Lihan achieves sculptures filled with textured lights and shadows that closely reflects the original, real life design.