I come from a family of map enthusiasts. My uncle collected antique river maps of New Orleans. My father loved old survey maps. I fell in love with maps when I opened my Girl Scout handbook to the page that taught me how to read one. There is a good reason that one character in my mystery series fell in love with another character when he taught her compass and map reading.
Naturally, I am a big fan of Jill K. Berry and her book Personal Geographies, which is about using maps as part of journaling and self-exploration. So I was thrilled when she called for people to participate in her Mapping 2014 Artfully Challenge. The idea was to draw a map that represents our hopes, aspirations, fears, plans, etc. for 2014. Monday to Friday of this week, 2014 January 13 to 17, is the blog hop for people to see all of those artful maps.
The week I started working on my map, I was playing with Norse imagery and the The Vaksala Runestone, from Uppsala Sweden. This stone has a lot of intersecting circles on it. Intersecting circles and a Viking theme became the basis for my map. In the lower right corner is my ship, ready to set sail, but whose way is blocked by a big, pointy stone called Fear. My ship has to find a way around that, and even when she does, I’m not sure there aren’t other big, pointy rocks hidden under the water. There are some safe landing places: trust, patience, and practice, and one big unknown move, because it’s likely that my husband and I will make a big move, our first in sixteen years.
The five big destination isalnds are the things I hope guide me this year:
- Passion because that’s what life is all about.
- Movement or rather stillness in movement, a Zen principal I’m trying to follow.
- Moment, symbolized by the labrynth, which means being aware of and enjoying all moments.
- Gratitude for all the things I have at this time in my life.
- And finally, love.
Finally, because I’m a big Harry Potter fan, I’ve put a tiny golden snitch in the middle of the top because if I’m skillful enough to catch one, my team wins.
For the people who like art details, the map was drawn on Aqvarelle Arches 140 pound cold pressed watercolor paper, with Micron pigma pens. It has a Golden quinacridone gold under wash and was colored with Derwent Inktense water soluble pencils.
To see links where other map makers are posting this week, go to Jill’s Personal Geographies Blog.