I’m not sure if I have ever mentioned it here on the blog before but when I was a student at University I had the opportunity to spend a year abroad as part of my course. I studied French, German and European Studies at Bath University and I was extremely blessed to have been able to spend my third year in Paris as part of the Erasmus Exchange programme. That was back in 2002-2003 when I was a student at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris and that year was probably one of the best years of my life. I have such fond memories of my time studying in Paris and it will always hold a very special place in my heart. Even now I can hardly believe how lucky I was to spend this time in Paris, especially as I was living in the 7th Arrondissement of St-Germain-des-Pres just next to the Musée d’Orsay and across the river from the Louvre. What a fantastic location! So when I spotted this fantastic hand drawn map of Paris by Jenni Sparks I came over all nostalgic.
Jenni is an illustrator who is renowned for her beautiful hand drawn maps and the latest addition to her portfolio is this intricately detailed illustration of the City of Lights. She spent months researching the French capital and reading about it before spending time there exploring the city and meeting the locals. She then started the laborious process of drawing each tiny building. The result is a wonderful print that features various aspects of Paris, from the instantly recognisable landmarks we all know and love to the small, obscure shops and cafés cherished by the locals.
The map, which is available from Evermade, is actually based on the map of the metro line so, like other maps, it is easy to follow and to situate yourself within the city. But that is where the similarity with other maps ends. Jenni’s map is a refreshingly honest take on the city which not only provides a handy and practical reference point but that is also a beautiful work of art to be be admired and cherished.
I am really excited to have this Paris print at home and it will be taking pride of place in our master bedroom as soon as we have completed the long-awaited makeover. I know it’s taking forever but we’re making (slow) progress and I’ll share the results with you here soon I promise. In the meantime, check out how beautifully detailed these maps are and see how many famous landmarks you can spot.
If Paris doesn’t have the same emotional pull for you as it does for me, Jenni also has maps of a few other cities in her portfolio. Check out her maps of London, Berlin, San Franciso and New York over on the Evermade website.