I've always loved maps! I think it may have something to do with my inner eye, I always see images of places, either known, or unknown as from a birds eye view. My Dad also encouraged me, (and my sisters) to map read from a very early age, Maybe that has also contributed! Years ago he gave me a book of maps, all the areas of Central and Greater London, and obviously now rather out of date with all the new building and road layouts. It was published well before the M25 came into existence!
I have also always been attracted to the way Aborigines have made their beautiful art inspired by their landscape. I decided to try and use my book of maps to inspire some art of my own. I cut out a very small window frame in paper to try and isolate interesting areas, and it just so happened that my first attempt was of an area where we were living when our first son was born. (above). The first sketch I decided was too detailed, I wanted something simpler, so you can see what I did in the sketch below the first one.
I decided to play around with ideas in a new sketch book, I wanted to create something from an actual map, but to make it my own by simplifying the images. I do, however, love the tiny tree images from the original maps, and so have decided to keep using these.
Above is a trial textile, showing a simplified map of roads, a few buildings, and areas of woodland. It would be interesting to revisit this area to see if those woodland areas still exist!
More experimental drawings from the maps, but again, I was beginning to get too detailed.
A more simplified drawing, and this time I used a piece of my gelli printed paper to add a more textural back ground. I think I need to keep thinking about this, on the one hand I love the simple linear aspects, and the contrast of open wooded areas, rivers and lakes etc., but I need to find my own way of reproducing this in fabric and stitch, using a background that is interesting texturally, but not to overpower the landscape.
I will keep working on this idea, it may end up on the back burner if I become 'stuck' with it, but hopefully at some stage it will result in a finished piece of textile art.