Bristol artist creates hand-drawn maps of the city

Artist Gareth Wood moved to Bristol in 2010 and "set his heart on" mapping the city - he is now close to completing the intricate hand-drawn images using black ink and white archival mount boards. He said he wants his maps to "connect with the viewer on a personal level".

Image copyright Alan Russell

The work has taken him more than 500 hours over about three years. He said he finds his inspiration by walking and cycling around Bristol and talking to local people.

The drawings include famous landmarks such as the Clifton Suspension Bridge and other less well-known parts of the city, such as Montpelier and Stokes Croft.

Image copyright Alan Russell

The 33-year-old said he has been interested in exploring since childhood. "The things you see in the map are not a perfect representation of what is there.

"The places, objects and subjects are selected through all types of reasoning. It could be a reoccurring theme or conversation that I've had with certain people that makes me decide that something should be drawn," he said.

Image copyright Alan Russell

He is "continuously researching" what he describes as "personal maps" or "psycho-geography".

"It is not always the physical state but the emotions and trends that we all share with our habitats that excite me. I communicate experiences using very intricate and detailed work.

"It often connects with people on a personal level, telling stories, opening conversations and provoking a variety of thoughts in the viewer," he said.

Image copyright Alan Russell

Gareth wants to make the map a two-way conversation and has left one of the hot air balloons "empty" as it floats across the city. He's asking Bristolians what they think should be inside it.

He said: "The city belongs to everybody and I'm looking for ideas for the final balloon."

Image copyright Alan Russell

He said he was inspired to draw Bristol by its residents who are "in love with their city" which is "curvy with lots of hills".

His drawing of the harbourside and old city shows a saxophone and old Victorian streetlight hovering by the Old Duke pub, famous for its live jazz.

Image copyright Alan Russell

Gareth currently works as a video and film producer and creates his maps under the name Fuller. The drawings will be unveiled at It's All 2 Much gallery in Stokes Croft on 31 May.

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