I’ve been interested in digital design sense being exposed to good cartography. The truth of the matter is people enjoy looking at images that are appealing to the eyes. So I learned pretty quick that if you want your work seen, make it look good. While there is a lot of creativity involved, there is a bit of a form to it all. Maps, data tables, charts, and figures all have the purpose of conveying data. This past year I was face with a new challenge. Make a series of 13 posters that showcase all the NASA DEVELOP locations. I saw 13 11x17 blank canvases and knew it was time to learn.

I enjoy the creative process, yet it requires a different side of the mind to engage with it. For me moving from a very logic based problem solving mindset to staring at a blank canvas was a slow transition. What go me inspired by the process was finding images that captured the character of a place. I started with the home Node in Colorado. I spent a warm spring afternoon walking the campus taking pictures of the buildings and structures that stood out. I settled in on a this picture of the Natural and Environmental Science Building.

Starting Image

Before we go any further, I need to say. I was not alone in this endeavor. Leah Kucera, Lauren Childs-Gleason, Nick Rousseau where all contributors to the theme of the posters as well as producing some themselves. I’ll highlight there work at the bottom. What the team decided on is a play on the ever popular retro National Park Service posters. We, set a high bar to meet. Having the form greatly helped in moving the process forward. After a series of very bad posters, lots of very appreciated feedback, and a series of better posters I got the final cut of the CO node poster.

CO Poster

One down 12 to go and go. What really help us all in the end was working with the people who lived in those locations. Getting some more distinct photos of the places. Below are two more examples from Arizona and Boston that both make me feel the quality of the location. These are my favorites.


AZ Poster


MA Poster

If you would like to see all the series please check them out at the NASA DEVELOP website. All these posters

Leah’s AMES CA

AMES Poster

Nick’s Langley VA

LARC Poster