A fill in the blank puzzle adventure for kids 7–10.
The original adventure map, although featuring entertaining illustrations, was neither modern nor historically accurate. Waying was also particularly difficult with the angular perspective of the map. I was tasked with creating a new, updated version of the adventure while using the same activity format and a similar physical format.
The original project brief called for historical design. Knowing the organization frequently favors modern art forms to tell the stories and lessons of history, I researched a variety of both historical and modern illustration and production styles. It was unanimously agreed to pursue a modern, somewhat cinematic style of illustration.
With that in mind, I found and commissioned two illustrators to create two illustrations each from reference photographs. The illustration contract was awarded to the talented Rachael Briner.
The production team gathered reference photos for all illustrations. Photos were specifically chosen and illustrated to match the direction and angle at which a young adventurer would approach each location in order to serve as both engaging art and practical wayfinding.
Although the desire was to maintain the same physical format, I made some minor but significant format changes. The overall format is smaller, and the paper stock is heavier. The smaller format is more manageable for kids. The sturdier paper holds up to kids on the go.
The priority for the map was to make it both engaging and practical for wayfinding. The perspective was eliminated as was the decoration, and the area covered was concentrated on the historic area.
Through testing of multiple pre-existing maps, it was regularly noted that users had difficulty finding their way. So tree lines were pulled away from walkways to make pathways more obvious and the many gates across the estate were added to the illustration as a visual cue. Modern buildings were pushed out of view while keeping each and every walkway from brick roads to dirt paths. The map strikes a balance between modern day wayfinding and the historic layout and experience of the estate.