The travel journaling theme for this month’s Documented Life Project prompts is giving me itchy feet. There are so many places I would love to visit in the world, places I would love to return to in order to explore further or share with my kids and I definitely need to “collect” the other half of the United States. I have lived in America for 20 months now and am still stuck on 25 states visited having not been to a single new state since we emigrated. What I need is a road trip!
Back in our pre-parenthood years, Mr Pict and I took a number of road trips in America – the last when I was heavily pregnant with our oldest son. One of our favourite road trips was when we travelled around California and the desert South-West back in 2000. I have very fond memories of that trip and we are keen to get the boys out to that region of America (which, of course, means I still won’t be picking up any new states). Therefore, when I read this week’s prompts – “recording memories” and “taking the road less travelled” – I knew instantly what the subject of my journal page would be: Route 66.
I have actually only travelled a short stretch of Route 66 – all in Arizona – so my page is definitely stretching the idea of being inspired by a memory. I am a big fan of Roadside America, all those little detours and moments of serendipity, strange encounters and peculiar sights, and there is no more famous road in America than Route 66. It was actually on Route 66 that I saw my first ever bison, looking lonesome in what was the yard of someone’s house. I would absolutely love to travel the whole length of Route 66 from Chicago to Los Angeles. I have read it takes approximately four weeks if one wants to have time to stop and take in the surroundings and visit places along the way.
Since my response to last week’s travel journaling prompt was mostly illustration with a little text, I decided to make this week’s page mostly text so that I could practice my typography. I drew a rough map style line of the road and plotted major geographical points along the way. I then drew the Route 66 route marker in one corner to make the subject clear. I then used words and phrases associated with the road to fill up the spaces in the journal page. I wanted a style that had a vintage feel to it, suggestive of the sign writing of all those Mom and Pop places along the way, so I wrote in a brush script style – first in pencil to get my spacing right and then with watercolour. It was tempting to add little drawings into the blank spaces but I determined to keep things simple to avoid visual clutter.