Archived entries for design-maps

pyschogeography, postcards and place

to accompany the production of the CHART Scarborough map and to follow the success of the workshops with local residents which amongst other things, sought to identify the essence of scarborough, a postcard project was launched. this teamed local residents – a mix of teenagers and older adults – with a poet and photographer to talk about and photograph the places that had resonance for them.

photographer tony bartholomew took the final photos used on the postcards and john w clarke shaped the verbal and written material into prose and scratch-poems for the rear of the cards relating to that place. some poignant, some playful, the wordplay also extends to the minutiae of text often seen on postcards such as the publisher – we designed logos for some. each is addressed as if travelling to the place but using ‘mind map’ directions, not a conventional address. we designed each card in a slightly different style based on postcards we randomly found, the ‘postmark’ and ‘stamp’ linking them into a set and to the map.

the cards are scattered around public buildings and cultural venues in Scarborough, there are 12 to collect if you fancy hunting them down. the 12th will give you the CHART Scarborough map references of the places the photos were taken so you can visit for yourself.

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more CHART

a couple more pics of the CHART Scarborough map (that’s Culture, Heritage and ART Scarborough) to show the size. it folds down to normal DL leaflet/envelope size but with the photographic side we hoped to create something that was interesting/attractive enough to be a poster too. which way up you display it is up to you – it’s designed so there is no top, bottom, left or right (although personally i’d snip off the cover before framing).

CHART Scarborough map

here’s the job that’s been consuming much of our thought and time over the last 6 months. it’s been a big project, not just in terms of time but also the thinking and research that has gone into its production.

it’s a free map intended to encourage visitors and residents explore the town from a cultural perspective. for this to work, we researched cognitive mapping theory – the idea that you can draw maps that aid people to build better mental pictures of places and thus navigate them in a more intelligent way. this works if your map can show in an instantly recognisable way, the key places and spaces that the brain uses to remember and form journeys.

as well as using workshops with residents to identify how people currently move around the town, we’ve deliberately ‘loaded’ our map with cultural landmarks to try and encourage use of those places as an aid to navigation, thus subtly changing patterns of movement in the town by those who use the map. that’s the idea anyhow – as far as we know this hasn’t been tried before. we’ve also added a few theories of our own, particularly about the use of colour in communicating sense of place.

the reverse side further encourages exploration by using a ‘map’ of photographic images (all taken in-house) that we hope will prompt exploration of a town that often suffers from predictable patterns of movement. poems by two local poets – john w clarke and kate evans – add some context and entice further.

this is stage one of the project. stage two will be an intreractive online version. for now, accompanying trails can be downloaded from the website – www.chartscarborough.com – and more are being added every week. if you would like to know more about the theory, workshops and interventions as part of this project you can also read the project’s blog there. the map itself can be picked up at venues across scarborough (or just get in touch if you’d like us to post you one).



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