Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Flights of Fancy, Flights of Fantasy

I've put a few more maps up at The Interimaginational Institute for Fantastical Exploration & Cartography, including this one:

Kingdom of Whimsy_main

because some people might wish to visit new kingdoms after they go treasure-hunting. All that treasure -- gold, I assume, although the maps don't specify -- could be useful at fairy markets and the like.

As more lands are discovered and mapped, or as more lands are mapped, and the maps then discovered, the Institute will offer those for your exploring pleasure, as well. And remember, your purchases support future mapping expeditions!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Won't you join me?

On an incredible and unforgettable voyage in search of new lands, hidden treasure, terrific tales and fantastic adventures?


And in celebration. Because today is the first anniversary of my Etsy shop, and although I have not spent much time tending my shop in recent months, I am back - with something that came out of the blue and wraps up so many of my long-tucked-away childhood dreams in one.

I am pleased to announce the opening of:

located at

All I wanted to do when I was a child was go places. I pored over maps for hours, sent away for travel brochures from places I'd never heard of, read National Geographic and Condé Nast Traveler from front to back, spent hours dreaming of becoming an explorer and a cartographer. What better way to live a life than to go all over the world, find new places and then make maps to tell everyone else?


But I grew older, and most people do, I deemed some dreams unreasonable and shelved them away in my mental attic while I went on to other activities. I got the impression at some point that there was nothing left to discover, really (something I realize now is somewhat untrue, even in the age of the amazing Google Earth, but I was convinced I was too late back then). Yet, I never lost my love for stories of explorers, discoverers, adventurers, pirates -- and for the maps they used in their exploits.


As I've grown older, I've realized that the most uncharted land of all is that of imagination. There will always be room for adventurers, explorers and dreamers to roam and discover freely. And there will always be a use for new maps.


So I put dip pen in ink and brush in watercolor these past weeks, and I present you with my maps of imaginary places. Treasure maps, journeying maps and maps of kingdoms filled with magic.


I have been so lucky that even as I changed my plans, my life has still been filled with incredible experiences, expeditions and countless journeys to amazing places. And of all the things I've done with my time, this cartographic project has been one of the most fulfilling, the most fun, the most joyous.

A few of my maps are already available on Etsy, and more, including a map of the Kingdom of Whimsy, will be up over the next few days. Please pass the word to those you know who might like to visit me at The Interimaginational Institute of Fantastical Exploration and Cartography. You'll need no luggage for this journey; just a good sense of adventure and a bit of spontaneity.