A map is a symbolic representation of parts of a place that is usually drawn on a flat surface.

Maps convey information about the world in a straightforward, graphical fashion. 

They teach about the world by showing how big and what shape countries are, where geographical features are, and how far places are from each other.

Distributions of things on Earth, such as settlement patterns, can be depicted on maps. 

They can pinpoint the precise locations of houses and streets in an urban community.

Cartographers, also known as mapmakers, create maps for a variety of purposes. Tourists use road maps to plan their vacation routes.

Meteorologists, who are scientists who study the weather, use weather maps to create forecasts. 

City planners use maps that show land features and current land use to decide where to put hospitals and parks.

Artificial Substrates

Do you frequently rely on lamination to safeguard your map printing projects? You could save time, money, and the environment by substituting synthetic materials for natural ones. 

Despite their polymer-based composition, synthetic substrates from top companies such as Mohawk and HopSyn are surprisingly difficult to distinguish from real paper, despite being commonly referred to as ‘treeless paper.” 

Depending on grade, they are incredibly resilient and resistant to tearing, water, grease, and other chemicals. Despite their artificial construction, they are fairly environmentally friendly. In contrast to laminated film, they are entirely recyclable. 

Additionally, their increased longevity keeps them out of the waste stream for longer. Synthetics are better for the environment than lamination, and they are also made without chlorine, heavy metals, stearates, harsh chemicals, or compounds that cause cancer.

Kinds of Maps

Numerous sorts of maps are created by cartographers, which may be grouped into two major categories: general reference maps and themed maps.

The locations of cities, boundaries, highways, mountains, rivers, and coastlines are depicted on general reference maps. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) and other government entities provide certain general reference maps. 

Many are topographic maps, which depict variations in height. They depict every hill and valley in a region. This is useful for everyone, from hikers selecting a path to engineers determining where to construct roads and dams.

Thematic maps depict distributions or patterns throughout the surface of the Earth. They stress a certain theme or issue. 

This may include knowledge about humans, other species, or the land. Examples include agricultural productivity, average income, linguistic distribution, and average yearly precipitation.

Numerous thematic maps are currently being created using geographic information system (GIS) technology. GIS are computer systems that capture, store, and display data pertaining to the surface of the earth. 

This technology allows several sets of data to be presented on a single map by combining information from maps with additional data about people, the land, climate, farms, residences, and companies, among many other things. 

Numerous sectors and governments utilize GIS technology for decision-making and analysis. For instance, GIS data assists officials in determining which streams are most susceptible to contamination. It can also assist a firm in locating a new store.

How Is It Recyclable?

There are some straightforward and novel methods to recycle or repurpose outdated maps.


For the project on “how to recycle a map,” let’s build a set of coasters using some leftover white ceramic tiles from a bathroom renovation. Using scissors, roughly cut pieces of the map that are somewhat larger than the tile. 

Tear the map’s edges apart. Apply a coat of Tombow Mono Aqua Liquid Glue before adhering the map to the tile using decoupage. Using your finger, burnish any creases or folds to eliminate them.

Decorate coasters with hand-lettered travel-related phrases with the Fudenosuke Brush Pen, Soft Tip. To choose my terms, I used the thesaurus for the word “journey.”

To make the coasters waterproof, add a thin coating of Tombow MONO Aqua Liquid Glue to the surface, smooth it with your finger, and allow it to dry. reapply a second layer if required.

Family Portrait

Let’s begin with an antique map of your city and an 8-by-10-inch canvas. My stretched canvas was from my stockpile, so I was unsure if it could be salvaged. 

Using the wide tip of Tombow MONO Aqua Liquid Glue, decoupage the map onto the canvas. The paper may get somewhat wrinkled when wet, but as it dries, both the paper and the canvas will be taut and flat! Mono Aqua is my preferred glue for decoupage!

Tombow MONO is used to draw the shape of a home on plain computer paper. Drawing with a pencil, cutting the outline with a craft knife, and then tracing it onto a 7-by-9-inch sheet of white paper. Again, using a craft knife, cut out the home silhouette.

Draft some criteria and write your family’s surname and the year it was founded. Ink the writing with the Tombow Mono Twin Permanent Pen’s fine tip. The MONO TWIN combines a bigger bullet tip and an extra-fine tip, thus making it two pens in one!

Repurposed Paper

As its name implies, recycled paper is created from post-consumer trash that has been recycled. In 100% recycled paper goods, no wood pulp from newly cut trees is utilized. Instead, everything, from old notebooks to packaging, is recycled. 

Using recycled paper for a personalized map not only decreases the consequences of deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions but also retains more oxygen in the atmosphere and reduces air pollution as a result of trees’ capacity to filter out airborne particles. 

Reusing one tonne of paper decreases greenhouse gas emissions by one tonne of carbon and conserves seven thousand gallons of water. 

Note, however, that the majority of recycled paper goods do not include 100 percent post-consumer waste, since the use of recycled content has a significant impact on the texture of paper products. 

Manufacturers are obligated to publish the real percentage of their products, allowing you to purchase with confidence.


Photography, color printing, and computers have further enhanced mapmaking. In just a few decades, the connection between people and maps underwent a radical transformation. 

As an alternative to paper street maps, many individuals use GPS gadgets that interact with satellites to identify their precise location on Earth. Digital maps can portray the Earth in three dimensions, surpassing the constraints of traditional flat maps. 

Almost the entirety of Earth’s surface has been mapped with astonishing precision, and this data is instantly accessible to anybody with an internet connection.

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