Tag Archives: blue highways

3,500 miles: The Map

hand-painted map of 7 states

“Map of the Heartland”, mixed media by Kerry McFall

I still have dozens of reference photos from our recent trip that I want to paint and sketch from, but I needed to put together this map piece before doing anything else – seeing the whole route really helps me make sense of the various bits and pieces of an adventure!  (You can read more about the trip in some of my previous posts.)  I was thinking as I worked on this that it would be fun to add little thumbnail images of the sketches and paintings I did in the various locations, but I decided that I’d really rather be working from newer inspirations.

Technique Notes:  

8.5″ x 12″ heavyweight sketchbook paper, AAA map section

1.  Laid some watercolor washes using the predominant colors in my memory – lots of browns and a bit of blue.  Carved a “stamp” out of a wine cork to resemble tumbleweed, randomly stamped over background.

2.  Pasted on the map overlay with acrylic medium, after using an x-acto knife to cut out all but the necessary borders and “blue highway” lines.

3.  Added vignette sketches from favorite points on the road – ink, colored pencil, watercolor.

4.  Added torn bits from used dryer sheets:  stretched to shape, dipped in watercolor, pasted on with acrylic medium.

5.  Added written descriptions; sealed with acrylic medium.

6.  Started planning next trip!