Mapping Project

Statement of Purpose:

The goal of this assignment was for students to create a personal map of some aspect of our lives, or reflect us in a creative way. I did not want my map to resemble a traditional map you may find on Google. I wanted to create a new visual version of a map, one that would resemble a part of my life journey in a personal way.

I started with two silhouette photos of my husband and myself. Using Photoshop, I took the left side of his body and the right side of my body to create a new silhouette. I proceeded to collage photos of my husband and myself on top of the newly created silhouette.

I started at the feet with photos of when we were kids before we had met, then high school, then to junior college, all the way to the present at Texas State University. I then pasted logos of the schools we were attending at the time on top of the photo collages. I also posted photos of other objects to resemble a specific time and place.

I ultimately wanted to create a visually aesthetic image that would resemble the importance of my husband in my life. Brian is someone who has been there for me through everything, and without him, things would have been very difficult. He is not just my husband, he is also my best friend. I wanted the span of time that we have been together to come across in the image. I did not want the image to seem cheesy, but to feel personal as if I have exposed a piece of myself to my class.

Below is what I am calling  my “LifeMap”


Click Mapping to see a PDF  of the photos used to create my mapping project Mapping

Readings and Screenings

Required Screening: The West Wing- Why are we Changing Maps?

It is interesting that changing the size of continents on the map dramatically affects how people feel about their country’s power. The status of a country and its culture will be entirely altered, the entire world will change, and everything that we know will be completely obliterated. The size of a country is equivalent to the power it holds, more people, more power at least that seems to be the logic that stands today. If the size of all of the continents across the world changed, the power and status of those continents will change along with it.

Required Reading: What is Contemporary Art Actually Mapping?

Katy Crocker describes maps as selecting information organized together in order to see the process of change or evolution. Crocker expresses that maps should not be restricted as a typical geographic image, like the ones you may often see displayed in your history textbooks; maps should be open to endless possibilities in the contemporary art world. It seems that over time the meaning of the word map has gathered rules and expectations, but like everything, art has taken those rules and thrown them out the window. Artists like Rebecca Solnit, who Crocker pointed out, mapped San Francisco through butterfly migration, a map that I have found to be inspiring. The concept of mapping things based on experience, or change of any type, is revolutionary. I agree with Croker when she says this concept is something that has a future in the art world, something that might just take off.

3 thoughts on “Mapping Project

  1. Deborah, what first caught my attention about your piece was the bright colors you chose to work with. The intensity they have creates a bold effect. The concept of merging half of your body and half of his body together seems to express the closeness you have to one another. I think that by including a actual map at the bottom, piecing together pictures from different stages of your lives, and text all effectively communicates the depth of your story to the audience.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Deborah, I rather enjoyed the colors and the collage of the images within your project. It continues to reveal a deeper understanding of who you are as an artist because you are able to connect the people in your life to your work and how these relationships can really define a people and at time their artistic voice. I enjoyed the color palette used within your piece, for me there is this transition in color that reflects the transitions within the relationship and your life stages. I love that you took silhouettes of the both of you and spliced them together to make a cohesive form of a body. What I found intriguing was your ability to do this in way that was not distracting to the eye, there is a seamlessness about the way your bodies morph into one another and become one.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I really like the image you created by combining you and your boyfriend and the pose both of you are in. What I really like is how you started from bottom to top. I like how you have a very young picture of you on one side of the leg and also a young picture of your boyfriend on the other leg. It’s like both of you didn’t know each other back then but then both of you met each other and grow as the eye moves from the feet to torso. I don’t know if that is intentional but I really like it.


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