This year I’ve begun running workshops for adults at public libraries, and it has been an amazing success. It is affirming my hunch that even grown-ups love making maps of places they love!
Who: There is no one type of participant. Some participants have lived in their town for 30 years and know every street and hilltop, and some just moved there. Some people feel they have ‘no artistic talent,’ while others come excited to use their abilities to make masterpieces. Everyone is welcome, and everyone will leave with an astonishingly exquisite map of a personally meaningful place. Interested adolescents and young adults welcome. I cap workshops at 20 participants, since interpersonal dialogue and instruction is vital to the process.
It was a wonderful time. I went from, "this is SO outside my comfort zone," to really enjoying it!!" --Barbara
What: The two hour workshop goes a bit like this:
I introduce myself and what I do - and how these workshops came about.
I then led participants through a process to identify a local place within the town that has personal significance. Then I led them step by step through the stages of making their own map, including the following: 1) using an assortment of historical and contemporary maps of the town to find out more information about your meaningful place, 2) isolating key geographic features from the maps to draw on your own map, 3) the use of watercolor paints for large washes and small details, and 4) the use of permanent pen to add clarity, toponyms and other details to the map. At all stages of the process, participants are welcome to follow their own ideas or impulses. Some participants have time to make a second map as well.
"Last night was so much fun! Molly was an articulate, interesting and knowledgable presenter. I can't wait to try my new map making skills at home now. This was a great workshop... I thoroughly enjoyed myself. It is so cool that our library does workshops like this....Thanks again!" -- Alina
The workshop is a wonderful mixture of personal sharing, town history, geography and art-making. In addition, the end result is a beautiful mosaic of hand-drawn maps of places in the town that are meaningful to local residents. An ideal project to display in the library or other community centers.
Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about workshops.