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Where in the world?

October 7, 2011

I am the first to admit geography (and directions…reading a map…road trips…and on and on..) will never be my forte. I could not point out where Timbuktu is located, let alone how to get to the south side DMV (ugh!) But for some reason my obsession with maps is growing stronger. Perhaps I should study these maps instead of viewing them as beautiful art??

Add a map to any room for a little pow! They’re colorful, come in a huge variety of forms, and can tell a story or share a memory. If it wasn’t slightly creepy I would incorporate maps into every room of the house.

Here is a project I did, actually a few years ago, but is surprisingly still with us, and was actually one of the first pieces of art we hung in the new house. This dining room wall piece was made out of 3 painting canvases, a large map poster from Borders  (RIP) and a whole lotta’ messy mod-podge.

Unfortunately I don’t have the process photographed but here are the supplies and the basic steps.

Here is what I used:

(3) 15″w  x  30″h x .75″ deep painters canvas from any art supply store – you can really use any number, size, shape canvas

(1) large map poster (must be larger than the total surface area of all your canvases)

(1)jar of mod-podge

paint brush or foam brush, but really your hands work the best – it’s a little messy

Here is how I did it:

Lay the poster down, and cut it into 3 even slices. The map I used had latitude and longitude coordinate grid – which helped me out a ton cutting out even lines. Spread modgepodge onto the back side of the first slice of map and lay the canvas on top, centering it.

Be conscious of where your map lies on the canvas and try not to lose too much of the good stuff.

I trimmed the edges that wouldn’t show anyways, and folded the map over the corners like you would a gift with wrapping paper.

I went around the canvas and gave the edges a crisp fold. Then the messy part. To really give the poster a strong hold. Glop on (yes, that’s a word) a whole lotta’ mod-podge and spread it all over, working out all the bubbles, wrinkles and creases that form between the canvas and the paper. I found the best way to keep the surface smooth is to lay the canvas on a hard surface and rub a straight edge (I used a ruler) on the inside back of the canvas. It will look cloudy, but will dry clear. I added two coats of mod-podge to really secure it. It’s been a few years now so that seemed to do the trick! Three nails in the wall and you have an instant piece of art!

Look at all the beautiful things you can do with maps!

{A cute way to showcase your favorite or memorable city}

{spruce up a bookshelf or table with these map-covered letters}

{a modern typographic approach}


One Comment leave one →
  1. Lori permalink
    October 7, 2011 5:17 pm

    You are so creative! Could you come decorate my house next?

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