Calculating shape to project text through wood - Help!

Hi guys,

I don’t even know if this is possible, but I would like to make a lamp for my wife that projects a text on the ceiling. The attached picture is not the text I want, I took something simple for modeling.

The sides of the lamp are at 45° to the ceiling.

I am wondering how I could calculate how to shape the text and cut the lamp side so that the texts appears as clean as possible on the ceiling, by that I mean not deformed on the ceiling.

I don’t know if that is clear or not. Let’s phrase it differently: how could I shape the letters on the lamp to make sure the light will project the text and look “normal” on the ceiling?

Here is an example of a lamp: Hangin%20Love%20Lamp|690x340

I assume it will never be perfect but how can I compensate light diffraction on the ceiling?

Hope that is clear enough ^^

Thanks in advance for any leads!


I’d make a test with a cereal box cut into 4 strips…

simple square to see the distortion, and adjust till square on the wall/ceiling…

the bulb position will be critical…


An in-SketchUp version of what @john_drivenupthewall suggests would be to draw the text on the ceiling and then draw lines from the corners of its bounding box down through the shade to the location of the bulb. That should give you a good idea of how much the height and width of the cutout on the shade needs to be scaled. Then you can draw the text directly on the shade and scale it to match the corners you found. That won’t be perfect, but the alternative would be a non-rectangular distortion of the text, which would be much harder to achieve.

Thanks to you guys, I will try both suggestions and see where that leads me.