What is this?
While studying industrial design at college in Boston 10 years ago I discovered an interest in subway maps. The subway map is usually not really a map but rather a diagram as it is not a literal representation of the subway. Each subway map from cities all around the globe all distort the city and distort the subway lines for the purpose of visual clarity. This is great for someone running to catch a train and not knowing where to get off. But wanting to know where the lines actually went? It was much harder to find a map showing this.
This series of posters tries to flip the original rational for clean design on its head. Instead of creating a map showing the routes of each line abstracted to fit into a small map each poster shows just one train line by itself, stripped away from its context, with a description and statistics provided. Why do it this way? I wanted to show the viewer something they see everyday but in a completely new, almost unrecognizable way; the way it actually looks.
Each poster has a minimalist design with a strong, bold color background and white (or black) text. Each poster uses the color of the line it represents for immediate recognition. Use the 4/5/6 trains? Dark Green. 7 line? Purple. I present the subway line in a way that most people have never seen before and needed a quick way for the viewer to recognize the line, or at the very least build a context.
I created these posters one night after being inspired by studying other subway designs I found online. The geographic shapes I had from an older project so most of the design was complete. I like to think this is the perfect mix of my love for maps and my love for clean minimalist design. I have one of the posters framed on my wall and it is such a beautiful addition to my apartment that I had to share it with others. The truth is I’m not doing this for the money; I’m doing it for the love. I’ve always made the maps that I wanted to see, that others never made, and this is the first that I’m proud enough to share with the world.
Why I like the Kickstarter model is not only do you get an 18”x24” copy of the poster but you will be helping me research which ones are going to be more popular than others. You aren't just donating to a cause; you’re buying a great piece of art. The goal here is to amass an inventory to start selling online and in the Transit Museum. Additionally I hope to start selling these through art and frame shops. A touristy town like NYC has a market built in.
Thank you so much for your support. I’m looking forward to getting these beauties out into the world!
When backing this project make sure you specify which posters you want!
At the end of the campaign when the goal is reached I'll email every backer at which point you tell me which poster(s) you want.
Some of the posters I've shown here but you can see the entire set on my Flickr page.
Risks and challenges
I would have loved to have these ready for the holidays but unfortunately they won't be ready until after the new year.
Production delays are something that can't be predicted. I am ordering in bulk so there will be plenty of each to go around. I'll be shipping each poster batch out myself and will email each backer once their poster is shipped.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (45 days)