DIY Magazine Collage Map - The Surznick Common Room

Monday, January 27, 2014

DIY Magazine Collage Map

Happy Monday everybody! It's supposed to get suuuuper cold tonight in Pittsburgh (again). I'm really hoping that tomorrow I can have another "It's too cold to go outside so stay at home!" day, like I was fortunate enough to have a couple of weeks ago. It doesn't seem likely but I'm crossing my fingers!

So speaking of Pittsburgh... I recently saw this pin of a Pittsburgh map print from Jazzberry Blue's Etsy shop. I think it is so cool. We love maps and we love where we live, so I brainstormed a little bit and came up with a fun idea to make our own Pittsburgh map art!

In addition to being inspired by the Etsy print, I also thought of a vase that I decorated a few months ago. We brought home two clear vases from Nick's sister's wedding last summer and I decided to spruce one up with some torn up magazine pieces and Mod Podge. I thought it would be awesome to try the same thing with the map idea. Turns out it worked great and I seriously love it.

First of all, I guess I should say that I don't know how well this project will translate with other cities. A map of Pittsburgh is so distinct because of the three rivers, but if you get creative I'm sure you can come up with a totally awesome way to make this work for any city/state/country/etc!

Here's what you need!
- Plain canvas
- Pencil
- Magazine pages
- Mod Podge
- Paintbrush

Here's what you do!
- First look up a map of your choice and sketch it onto your canvas. You could print out the map and trace it onto the canvas too if you'd like. I decided to just go for it and sketch it by hand. There were a couple lines that I thought didn't look quite right so I just erased and redrew them. You can't see any eraser marks on the canvas at all.

- Flip through magazines until you find pages with colors or pictures you like. I decided to go with a few different colors to make it more fun. You could also pick pages or articles that mean something to you. The bottom left of our map is an ad for Girls and the main land of Pittsburgh is from a Lena Dunham article (Surznick LOVES us some Hannah and Shosh.) The top of our map is a picture of Bob Dylan. So for us we kind of got the best of both worlds - pages about things we love and pretty colors too. Our canvas was 16x20" and I used probably 5-6 pages total.
- Rip your magazine pages into small pieces. Mine were about dime-sized, but some bigger and some smaller. I only did one page at a time so that all of the pieces from a single magazine page would stay in the same area of the map.

- Paint some Mod Podge onto your canvas in a small area and attach your magazine pieces, slightly overlapping one another. Once I covered about a 4x4" area, I put a coat of Mod Podge on top of the completed area to seal it. Repeat this process until your canvas is covered in your pattern. I decided to leave the rivers white and not make any changes to the plain canvas. I also decided to extend the map onto the sides of the canvas and cover those with magazine pieces too. I think this makes it look a little cleaner and finished.

- Once your canvas is covered, seal the entire thing with another coat of Mod Podge. Then let it dry and hang it up!

This isn't a super quick project like some of the others we've posted, but well worth it in my opinion. Our canvas took me about 7-8 hours total, but I simultaneously watched the pre-red carpet show, the red carpet, and the Grammys, so it wasn't entirely bad (except Taylor Swift's dancing).

I love the way this turned out. If you look at the map from far away it actually kind of looks like it was painted, which is pretty cool too. We gave ours a home on the mantle in our dining room so our Burgh love can be showcased loud and proud.

Have a great week and stay warm!

Sarah & Nick


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