GOOD

Typographic Road Trip: 50 States, 50 Posters

In the summer of 1994, my family planned a road trip from Houston to Washington, D.C. My parents highlighted the route on a map and I remember...

In the summer of 1994, my family planned a road trip from Houston to Washington, D.C. My parents highlighted the route on a map and I remember my mom asking me if I wanted to take the scenic route. My answer was yes.


The trip took us through several state lines, something I took pride in, but deep down, I knew I wasn’t the well-traveled 5th-grade explorer I made myself out to be—I had only driven through the different states, after all, and in the back seat, no less. But it’s probably why I started wanting to explore more.

When I finally got my own car, I’d find new routes home, no matter how inefficient, because I wanted to see what the other roads looked like. In college, I began exploring the campus and found my way into buildings under construction, rooms with unexplained pianos, secret tunnels, and rooftops of several buildings where I’d have to explain to administrators that I wasn’t jumping, just exploring.

These explorations weren’t destination-focused; I was wondering more than I was wandering. I just wanted to get lost, experience something new and come back with a little more knowledge and perspective, no matter where.

In December 2012, I got an email offering cheap flights to Portland, Maine. This email couldn’t have come at better time. I had just finished freelancing at a New York ad agency where I worked days, nights, and weekends, and a $60 flight seemed like a great price to step out of a gridded city and get lost again.

I stayed on a boat with a couple who gave me pointers about Portland, places I should eat and they even told me about their travels along the Atlantic coast of America. It didn’t hit me until I left, but this couple could have lived anywhere—they live in an RV-of-the-sea—but they chose to call Maine their home. I'd recently designed a poster about my own home state—Texas—listing the things that I'd missed about it in the shape of the state. After I made it, others reached out to me, asking me to make versions for their own home states.

As I sat in Maine, I decided to start a new project: I’d explore the country, talk to different locals and find out what makes them call their state “home.”

This will give me a chance to talk to people face-to-face, gain some perspective, and give the people a poster they’d be proud of, and maybe even inspire other 5th graders to explore the country themselves someday. Or at least give 5th-grade me a high-five and say, “You did it, man.”

Please visit my Kickstarter to learn more and help fund the project.

Images courtesy of Nathan Hoang.

This project will be featured in GOOD's Saturday series Push for Good—our guide to crowdfunding creative progress.

Articles
Screenshot via Sweden.se/Twitter (left) Wikimedia Commons (right)

Greta Thunberg has been dubbed the "Joan of Arc of climate change" for good reason. The 16-year-old activist embodies the courage and conviction of the unlikely underdog heroine, as well as the seemingly innate ability to lead a movement.

Thunberg has dedicated her young life to waking up the world to the climate crisis we face and cutting the crap that gets in the way of fixing it. Her speeches are a unique blend of calm rationality and no-holds-barred bluntness. She speaks truth to power, dispassionately and unflinchingly, and it is glorious.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
Ottawa Humane Society / Flickr

The Trump Administration won't be remembered for being kind to animals.

In 2018, it launched a new effort to reinstate cruel hunting practices in Alaska that had been outlawed under Obama. Hunters will be able to shoot hibernating bear cubs, murder wolf and coyote cubs while in their dens, and use dogs to hunt black bears.

Efforts to end animal cruelty by the USDA have been curtailed as well. In 2016, under the Obama Administration, the USDA issued 4,944 animal welfare citations, in two years the numbers dropped to just 1,716.

Keep Reading Show less
Science

The disappearance of 40-year-old mortgage broker William Earl Moldt remained a mystery for 22 years because the technology used to find him hadn't been developed yet.

Moldt was reported missing on November 8, 1997. He had left a nightclub around 11 p.m. where he had been drinking. He wasn't known as a heavy drinker and witnesses at the bar said he didn't seem intoxicated when he left.

Keep Reading Show less
Communities
via Real Time with Bill Maher / YouTube and The Late Late Show with James Corden / YouTube

A controversial editorial on America's obesity epidemic and healthcare by comedian Bill Maher on his HBO show "Real Time" inspired a thoughtful, and funny, response by James Cordon. It also made for a great debate about healthcare that Americans are avoiding.

At the end of the September 6th episode of "Real Time, " Maher turned to the camera for his usual editorial and discussed how obesity is a huge part of the healthcare debate that no one is having.

"At Next Thursday's debate, one of the candidates has to say, 'The problem with our healthcare system is Americans eat shit and too much of it.' All the candidates will mention their health plans but no one will bring up the key factor: the citizens don't lift a finger to help," Maher said sternly.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics
via Gage Skidmore

The common stereotypes about liberals and conservatives are that liberals are bleeding hearts and conservatives are cold-hearted.

It makes sense, conservatives want limited government and to cut social programs that help the more vulnerable members of society. Whereas liberals don't mind paying a few more dollars in taxes to help the unfortunate.

A recent study out of Belgium scientifically supports the notion that people who scored lower on emotional ability tests tend to have right-wing and racist views.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics