Carbon nanoflakes (CNFs) were grown on Si substrates at different substrate temperatures by radio frequency magnetron sputtering. The changes in the shape of CNFs caused by the substrate temperature and the places of CNF growth in the substrate were investigated. The adhesion of carbon materials to the substrate and the growth of crystallized flake-like structures were found to be dependent on the substrate temperature. At a substrate temperature lower than 550 °C, no material was deposited on the substrate. At a substrate temperature higher than 600 °C, flake-like carbon microstructures were grown. Therefore, only when the substrate temperature is higher than the crystallization temperature, the adhesion of carbon materials takes place and the CNF grows two dimensionally. In addition, it is suspected that CNF grows selectively in the direction of the greatest supply of sputtered particles. This selective growth is an intrinsic growth mode in the bipolar sputtering method. © 2012 Institute of Electrical Engineers of Japan. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.