Giving Instructions

Giving instructions within an illustration

Unintentional very early on for exercises in part two for both spider diagrams and turning words into pictures I watched this skillshare class by Mimi Chao called “mark your memories: make an illustrated milestone map”

OCA Mark your memories
Work by Mimi Chao

While watching my mind was thinking this is perfect for this exercise, not only as a technique to create a Diagrammatic illustration but to have the illustrator as a point of inspiration. Not only did I enjoy the class I found myself drawn to Mimi Chao style which I felt was very dreamy and memory-evoking.

I wanted to explore “getting to my house” I was going to do this based on my school run route, taking pictures of this “small” route but to illustrate in a more interesting way.

One of my first idea was to create a map like when I was a child, I remember baking maps to make them look old and straining with tea bags!

I used to love the goonies movie and thought really about creating a magical map, like this one by Takayo Akiyama.

Like many of the the exercises before this one inspired me a lot and quickly I had quite a few ideas and ways I could go about this, such as.
* A water colour wash image with “memory snippets” – However I have two exercise I have in mind to explore a similar wash technique.
*Polaroids pinned on a google map. – This was nearly the route I went down, however due to fact I wished to create mainly myself
* A Magical/ interactive map.
*A dream walk

OCA GI 001
Map images

I took photos of my journey, above I’ve included visual highlights or “landmarks”
The first picture is a view I get on this journey on foggy, sunny morning and it is breathtaking (have loads of photo of spot) I want to see if I can evoke the mood in the work via colour palette or illustration style.


Explored landmarks, layout and colours withing my sketchbook.
It was within the sketchbook I found the direction I was taking this.

OCA giving Instrutions final
Final piece

I created this digitally due to fact I can move elements around, resize and at time of starting I didn’t feel the textures in this place, I pictured very flat and matte.
My use of red is to help guide the eyes around the piece and at the “landmarks”

While I’m sticking to the “getting to my house” I couldn’t ignore an additional idea I woke up at 2am/4am in the morning and thought of, even had to get up and quickly sketched the idea on any paper I could get hand on, a piece titled “An introverted guide to making a cup of tea for a guest”
(which is below)


From this early morning sketch I explored a little in my sketchbook and did the piece digitally. While not my “main” piece for this I wanted to explore and see it to a more “edited” finished. (Below)

OCA cuppa tea

I will be polishing this “extra” piece up more as feel I could do something more with the header. (I know I’ve used a fair bit of words on this one)

I had fun with this, I could have kept exploring and trying it differently. I did however knew had to try and stick with the objectives of the exercise in mind, using not only size but colours to define hierarchy and help the eyes flow.
I’ve may have picked an “easy” subject and technique to explore but keeping it simple and not to make it over-complicated was indeed a challenge within itself.

I didn’t show the main to students at first, but shared on my social media and asked for feedback. I wanted a more “viewer” view on this. It seems very positive, a few wanting to try the school run route map with their own children. So if anything I’ve inspired people!
Could I have have found a way to make the main elements pop out more?

There were many routes I could have explored and envisioned, but this was the direction I was pulled, maybe inspired by the skillshare class and the work of the artist.

Credit, research and resources.

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