My PDX

Problem
Create a project that examines what can we learn from mapping emotional geography while strengthening peoples' mental map of Portland.

Approach
A participatory mapping project designed to engage users by documenting and reflecting on their transportation network. 

Results
The primary tool of My PDX is a minimalist base map of Portland, Oregon, screen-printed on TyVek. The map was distributed to 30 participants who were asked to document and reflect on each trip they took within the city for a week. A color-coded key and markers were provided so the participants could annotate the paths of each transportation type they took. Photographs were taken of each participant and displayed with their completed map. 

My PDX focused on subjectively mapping geographic emotion through transportation journaling. Participants analogously recorded their paths on a physical map as opposed to being digitally tracked with GPS. The emphasis was on the personal discovery through action and reflection. Participants enhanced their sense of place and connection with Portland. This collection of personalized maps, reflections and photographs created portraits through transportation habits, revealing different versions and experiences of Portland. 

My PDX was exhibited as an installation at PNCA and in book form in the Mapmakers Manifesto show at the 2014 Istanbul Design Biennial. 

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Role
Creative Director
Designer
Photographer
Printer

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Related Links
My PDX book
My PDX blog posts

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Mentors
Natalie Jeremijenko
Peter Schoonmaker
Zack Denfeld
Alister Fenix
Palmarin Merges