Friday, March 12, 2010

City Maps II

I did this map in black line for Robert Valentine. It was Robert who did the colors and had it so beautifully letterpressed. The client was an important literary agent who was moving from the upper east side to midtown. In other words it was a moving announcement, but rather more glorified than such items usually are. Surprisingly enough it was singled out as one of the best printed pieces of the year by ID, the international design magazine. There was cleverness in the drawing, but it was the elegance of the execution that made it memorable. I like how I magnified the street grid slightly inside the magnifying glass. The glass was also my idea, as were the little jokes inserted around it. But it needed to be clear and eye-catching, and that was Robert's doing.

This map is a enormous departure, but does the same basic things. Just a map of a well known New York neighborhood, but with less persiflage. I drew it as someone would draw on a cocktail napkin. Rough, blunt, offhand. Pencil line has more candor to begin with and deserves to be used more. I did a San Francisco map for Random House once, for a book about the Beats. It was careful and clear, and I wish I'd done it carelessly and roughly, more like this. It would have contained the same information but would have suited the milieu it depicted.

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