I sense that humans have an urge to map--and that this mapping instinct, like our opposable thumbs, is part of what makes us human. Katharine Harmon, author of books on maps.
Thirteen map designers appeared at the North Cascades Institute Environmental Learning Center on Friday morning equipped with the urge to map, and some art supplies. They left Sunday afternoon with illustrated maps that were fascinating and varied. These maps represent extensive work done during 15 hours of class time (plus, for many, some nocturnal time or pre-class early morning time). In the photos below I will show some work-ups and partially done maps as well as the completed, or nearly completed, final maps. Not all maps were fully documented by my camera; I've selected several of them to feature here.
Designing and making a map is a complex project. This group remained impressively focused with novice artists working alongside the more experienced. All the careful design and execution work paid off, as you will see in the photos. Perhaps, like Katharine Harmon (above) says, it's in our deepest nature to want to draw maps. It's just that so few of us ever actually make them. This workshop provided that opportunity.
To view larger images, please click on them.
To read a review of this course (and more information about programs at the Learning Center) by participant Jessi Loerch of the Everett Herald, please click here.
...we continue to make maps. Why? Because making maps is a way of understanding. We make maps to sort out the physical world, to see its size, shape, color and texture. We make personal maps to share our experiences and travels, relationships and ideas. Jill Berry, author of Map Art Lab.