Art Journal Prompt: Draw an inside Map

I can get lost even when I have a map in hand, because I have no sense of direction. But maps fascinate me, and I’ve used a lot of vintage maps in my art. I especially like the metaphor of a map – it is a way to move from one place to the next, to find new meaning, to change location, to see new things, and even to explore ourselves. I love the language of the road map: treasure hunting, adventure seeking, discovering uncharted territory, traveling to new places while we always, and at the same time, have the means to find our way back home right there in our hands (or phones – I’m also a big fan of GPS maps). Going away is just as important as coming home to me.

I think traveling will also take you to new places within. We can also map out our own interior design in a way. To me this is very linked to personal journaling and self-discovery. By journaling we explore our own inner world, and by drawing a map of my own inner world, I see it more clearly. A while back I carefully mapped out where I am at with my word of the year: writing, mostly because it is a place where I need some guidance forward right now…

Hand-drawn map in my art journal

As my writing has been at a stand-still for most of this year, my One Little Word not helping at all, I decided to draw a map of the Inner Landscape of a writer, or rather, me as a writer right now. I think drawing a map is quite difficult and time consuming, but important and super fun. I did over-think quite a bit, talked a lot with my inner critic about the fact that I can not draw and then sent her off and drew anyway…

W is for the Map to Writing

My favorite part of the whole process is coming up with the names of the different places in this Writing Landscape. There is the Forest of Discontent, where I’m at right now with my writing, though I can see the forest’s edge glimmer in sunlight at a distance…

Writing Map Detail: the Procrastination Mountains

The Writing Landscape

Surrounding the forest is the Desert of No Ideas (or deserted ideas), and neighboring like a dark cloud, is the Procrastination Mountains (the highest top is in the Mountain Range of Inner Obstacles) where I have a Hideaway Cabin that I stay in a lot. It’s just so darn cozy there, homey and comforting (with a big sofa and telly). It’s just a walk away from the Spider Web of WWW (it’s the wrong writing way, also known as Other People’s Awesome Online Writing) where you can sit and watch cute bugs and spiders all day without even moving a pen…

Writing Map Detail: The Forest of Discontent

Between these two dark places is the Freeze Up Patch and the Hard (To Find) Road Forward, and as you pass the desert you only reach the Gate that is Always Locked (typically I think that’s where my Inner Critic hangs out too). If you’re lucky in The Writing Landscape you’ll eventually reach the water, where there is Shallow Writing grounds and Deep Reef beyond the Fishing Spot.

Writing Map Detail: The Spider Web

I guess the Lawn of Yawn gets its water from the Lake of Bright Ideas, where the sun always shines and the pencils are constantly sharp and moving on to the next chapter. But if you visit, be weary of the Ebb and Flow! It can catch you of guard…

The Writing Map Overview

So as you understand, writing is a tricky thing with lots of road blocks on the way to the Good Writing that Makes you Happy – but you’ve got to find your own way there. There are many different roads to move forward on, pick one and forge ahead. This is just my personal map, and my thoughts, on the obstacals I often find and the landscape I have to travel through (always on my own, pen in hand).

This map came about as Tammy asked me to draw something for her art journal series Prompt60, though the idea of an Inner Map was my own. Check out prompt #38 – all about drawing your own map in your Art Journal. Thanks Tammy for always inspiring me.

Thank YOU for reading this post, I appreciate you being here on this journey.