Having completed our four points of the compass Wellbeing Walks, we have had some studio time to make the maps. It's always an enjoyable process sharing ideas and working on allotted tasks, it's almost a dance between studios, thoughts and actions. We decided to use the Miles & Dacombe hand stamped logo we developed for our first Undiscovered Networks postcard as a unifying element. It may seem odd that with easy access to dozens of typefaces on the computer that we should choose such a low tech method of printing, but we like the fact that the pressure of our hands creates a different intensity of colour and ink, sometimes parts of letters are barely visible, sometimes the alignment of text is a bit wobbly, but we feel this adds something to the end product.
For each Miles & Dacombe header and footer we print our own surnames and often chuckle at the incidental words SAND and BEAN created at the end of each surname. The border strips of colour are also hand mixed and rolled because we enjoy seeing the uneven line and spread of the inks.
Our studios are in the annexe of a primary school and during term time in the lunch hour the atmosphere changes, there are shouts, laughter and activities in the building and out on the playground, so we generally de-camp to another venue. One of our favourite haunts is the Skylark Cafe in Fermyn Woods Country Park, we've had numerous planning meetings and making sessions in there.
We added the paper cutouts to the first two maps in the cafe whilst a group of people from Paperchase were taking part in a team building exercise. The food is lovely and the staff never seem to mind us turning our table into a mini studio space or portable office. A recent British survey discovered that a brisk 15 minute walk reduced chocolate cravings in response to stress, but is is very hard to resist Ellie's home made cakes when ordering food! Through the windows you can see a host of birds hopping in and around the picnic tables and people of all ages taking advantage of the rambling spaces in the country park.
We chose the paper cutouts because they had tiny luggage labels in a variety of colours which reminded us of the labels we attached to our balloons. Jo drew all the map outlines and placed the paper shapes, Carole added areas of colour and the dotted lines that described the four routes.
Jo also made some lovely, tiny paper windmills to record the area we staged our windmill intervention and we decided to scan the maps rather than photograph them to preserve the textures and give a truer representation of the colours. Whilst Jo was sticking and placing, Carole was scribbling and reading back the memories of places and journeys during the walks, each map has its own 'story' printed on the reverse of the map.
We have a limited edition of A3 maps and an unlimited edition of A4 maps, the printing of the A3 maps were an In Kind donation from CTB Print & Design, who Carole has had a working relationship with for over 20 years.
|Folding the finished maps|