My painted neighborhood maps–showing the footprints of buildings, alleys and streets–are based mostly on historic plat maps at the Martin Luther King Library’s Washingtoniana Room. I’ve completed maps of Adams Morgan; Dupont Circle; the U Street neighborhood; Cleveland Park; Glover Park & Woodley Park; Capitol Hill, Old Town-Alexandria; Mt. Pleasant; Georgetown; Southwest and the National Mall; and the abutting neighborhoods of Columbia Heights, Bloomingdale, LeDroit Park and Park View. Others include: a map of Rock Creek Park, which appeared in The Washington Post Magazine in 2014; a “Think Local” business map of Adams Morgan/U Street/Mt. Pleasant/Columbia Heights for the Latino Economic Development Corporation; a Congressional Cemetery map, marking its 200th anniversary; a Potomac River Gorge map for The Nature Conservancy; and a Marvin Gaye Park map in Southeast Washington.
In the year 2000, I imagined a map showing the city’s neighborhoods in contrasting colors. Planning it required research in the Maps Room at the Library of Congress to find out how the neighborhoods developed over time. D.C. neighborhoods don’t have official boundaries; our neighborhoods are how we think of them–the boundaries are emotional and psychological. The resulting painting was “A Watercolor Map of the Neighborhoods of Washington, D.C.” It was featured on the Smithsonian’s Folklife Festival t-shirt in 2000, when the festival celebrated the city of Washington. (Since 2000, I’m disappointed to report that other people have copied my neighborhoods map, but mine was the original.)
Four of my maps are available as limited-edition prints, produced for me by Old Town Editions of Alexandria. Using state-of-the-art printing processes, Old Town creates long-lasting prints that nearly replicate the original watercolors in subtlety and tone. The limited-edition maps are Rock Creek Park; the Neighborhoods of Washington, D.C.; the Potomac River Gorge; and the National Mall, Hains Point and Southwest.
MY NEWEST MAP, JUST COMPLETED: THE CAPITOL GROUNDS
A WATERCOLOR MAP OF THE NATIONAL MALL, HAINS POINT AND SOUTHWEST, COMPLETED 2014:
THE WORK IN PROGRESS: