If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll already know what a geek I am when it comes to maps. Old, new and anything inbetween – maps are intriguing, enticing and informative. I’m the kind of person who wanders over to information maps on footpaths or in city centres and looks like a total tourist, but really I’m just interested in the map itself. Why is it here? What’s nearby? Any special information? Someone has taken the time to make that map and put it there, so surely there’s a reason that’s worth investigating. So it probably comes as no surprise that I also love to have maps in my own home too, and that’s where Mapify comes in. Read on to find out more about my Valentine’s map and how you can win your very own personalised map created just for you by Mapify in my giveaway – and there’s THREE prizes to be won!Thankfully, my husband is equally interested in maps, so when there’s an museum exhibit of old relief maps in the Lake District, or an exhibition of Max Gill’s famous street maps at The Lettering Arts Centre we are first in the queue to see it. I guess we’re well suited to each other, eh? So what better gift could I get for my husband this Valentine’s Day than a personalised map? Well, I’m pleased to say that it IS possible to create your own map of any location throughout the whole world, and have a fantastic quality print on your wall in a matter of days. Mapify is the serviceI used to make this special gift, and here’s how I did it.
MacDonald Gill, known as Max, was a major figure in the graphic art world in the first half of the 20th century. Back in November I visited an exhibition of his work at The Lettering Arts Centre completely by accident and I was fascinated by the maps on display. The exhibits were a recent discovery, found in a cottage in Sussex which had been Max Gill’s last home, and until then his work has gone largely neglected. I’d never heard of the designer until I stumbled upon this exhibition and I am so pleased that I stuck around to listen to the talk about his life and work.The one thing that you may know Max Gill for is his famous lettering work. The Imperial War Graves Commission appointed him to design the lettering alphabet and regimental badges for the standard military headstone after the first world war. This standard script is still used today and can be found on military memorials all around the country – a small yet very visible success for this little-known cartographer.It was his maps rather than his lettering that really sparked my imagination and I spent hours browsing the posters he’d designed. The muted colour palette was beautiful; each map was a gorgeous combination of mustard, denim blue and burnt red – all my favourite tones – so I was immediately drawn into the work and was compelled to take a closer look.
Huddersfield is a very beautiful town in West Yorkshire, England. The special atmosphere of the city and architectural refinement attract thousands of tourists from around the world so today I’m focusing my map research on the town and its university. Its location – one hour from Liverpool, York, Manchester, Newcastle, Sheffield and Birmingham and only three hours from London – makes the city an ideal place to explore different parts of the UK. Huddersfield is a thriving and friendly regional centre in the north of the country.
The lively city centre with its Victorian architecture is characterized by a magnificent combination of traditional and modern styles. It has the third tallest building in the United Kingdom – Victoria Tower on Castle Hill. Every year the city hosts many different festivals that attract a considerable number of tourists. One of these festivals is the festival of fire. It is usually held in November near the famous railway station in the city center. The beauty of landscapes surrounding Huddersfield is breathtaking. Local features provide plenty of opportunities for mountain biking, hiking and other outdoor recreation.
Globetrotter sounds so cool. How come there’s no such thing as a map-trotter? Sounds a bit piggy doesn’t it?? Anyway, as well as taking a keen interest in maps (so much so that I started this regular blog feature!) I also love globes.
As much as I enjoy studying a world map, terrestrial globes are the only ‘true’ world maps as they show the earth as it really is, without distortion of land mass or distance so it’s an accurate way to learn about the surface of the planet. Even the 23.5 degree tilt of a globe’s holder ensures that the earth is being rotated on the same axis as in ‘real life’ in relation to the sun. Great educational stuff!
This is probably what makes them so popular for children’s bedrooms, and there are hundreds of globe lamps and nightlights available to illuminate the rooms of youngsters. Not only are they educational, but they also look pretty cool to young eyes, who are often fascinated by the solar system, planets and stars.
It comes as no surprise then that I found plenty of examples of globes in interior design when I was trawling Pinterest this week, looking for more examples to add to my ‘Map Love’ board. There were children’s bedrooms galore, along with offices and living spaces proudly displaying the owner’s collections.
It seems like globes are a far more collectable than maps. Although I have a huge stash of maps, they are stored on bookshelves and in boxes, and not grouped together in a display like these globes. If they were, it would look more like wallpaper than a curated collection so that’s why I believe that globes are a more popular cartography collectable. Heck, even I want a wall full of globes after seeing these inspiring interiors.
Of course, the ideal backdrop to a globe collection is a map on the wall, and this loft apartment has got it just right – that’s the home for me! Often globes are confined to the office and can be found on the desks of teenage students everywhere, and even though can be very useful in a learning or working environment, I think they look equally great as interior design features anywhere in the home.
I’d love to grow a collection of globes and display them pride of place in my living room. Let me know if you too are a fan of globes and whether you have started a collection already? Where would you keep your globes – hidden away or on display? Let me know by leaving me a comment or tweet me for a chat @Cassiefairy.
Do you remember that episode of Friends where the Chandler and Joey are tourists in London and Joey has to ‘go into the map’ in order to get his bearings? He put the map on the floor and stepped onto it to work out what direction to head in, even though he’d only just left the hotel. I’m not saying that I’ve ever done this before, but I have turned the map while following the route, and I’m sure that’s not necessarily the ‘done thing’ in map-reading but it works for me, and ‘going into the map’ worked for Joey back in the 90s.When I visited The Grandest Views exhibition at Keswick Museum (which I wrote about last week – read my review post here) the massive Ordnance Survey map covering the floor of the museum put me in mind of this idea of ‘going into the map’ and I loved being able to follow routes on a larger scale. If only I could buy that massive map – I’d have the ideal vinyl floor for my kitchen! Continue reading “Map Geek – Going into the map” »