Not long ago, we wrote about our American Travel Collection, about the wonder and beauty of traveling across this great nation. To a large degree, our American Travel Collection was inspired by our own travels across the country. We have a special love for the winding two-lane roads of America—where we find endless inspiration for our vintage travel poster art.
As technology has advanced and as the tourism industry has grown, it's easier not just to travel the country, but also to travel the world. In 2010, our team of artists here at Anderson Design Group set out to create one poster for each country on the globe. It's still a work-in-progress, but when this series is done, the World Travel Collection will be our largest travel poster series yet.
Being that it is the tenth year anniversary of the World Travel poster series, we thought it fitting to reflect on this collection, an assortment of (at the time of this writing) over 260 handcrafted, vintage travel posters.
Our Great Blue Earth - What Inspired the World Travel Collection
We believe that every artist possesses a flicker of wanderlust in his or her heart. We know we certainly do! We also believe that much of the inspiration for art is drawn from the experiences an artist has that are not the norm, the sights an artist sees and the environments an artist experiences that are not the usual. That's why we travel so much ourselves, and why we encourage everyone to do the same.
Ten years ago, we embarked on a massive quest to hand-draw and illustrate a vintage travel poster of every country and major travel destination in the world. This collection now has dozens of art posters for destinations in North America, Central America, South America, Australia, and Europe. We are currently working on creating artwork of Asia, and we still have the Middle East and Africa to go! We may never really "complete" this collection, as we're always finding new destinations and attractions across the globe that inspire us.
Our goal has been to literally "canvas the world" by producing original travel art of each country, sometimes with several designs for a single country. We create classic travel posters that are styled after the mid-20th century Golden Age of Illustration when steam ship and railroad travel was at a glamorous peak. The Great Depression ushered in a new treasure trove of poster art funded by the Works Progress Administration. There was magic and excitement during the early and mid-1900s, when the federal government—in an effort to create jobs for unemployed artists—actually funded the arts.
Fast forward more than half a century. The Anderson Design Group World Travel Collection is our own way of celebrating art, adventure, culture and beauty.
A World of Opportunity - The Value of Traveling
We've always encouraged artists, young and old, novice and veteran, to travel the world. Few things foster new inspiration like seeing new sights, experiencing different cultures, and learning about the incredible wonders of this great planet that we live on.
Julia Cameron, artist and author, said it best:
"Art is an image-using system. In order to create, we draw from our inner well. This inner well, an artistic reservoir, is ideally like a well-stocked trout pond. We've got big fish, little fish, fat fish, skinny fish, an abundance of artistic fish to fry. As artists, we must realize that we have to maintain this artistic ecosystem. As artists, we must learn to be self-nourishing. We must become alert enough to consciously replenish our creative resources as we draw on them, to restock the trout pond, so to speak."
A cursory Google search reveals endless blog posts and even scientific studies on the sheer value of traveling. And for artists, such benefits are magnified a hundred-fold. When artists travel, they immerse themselves in new cultures, different environments, and unique demographics. International travel brings an artist in front of a world of inspiration and ideas.
Dr. Adam Galinsky, a professor at Columbia Business School, commented on the immense benefit of international travel for any artist of any culture or background:
"Foreign experiences increase both cognitive flexibility and depth and integrativeness of thought, the ability to make deep connections between disparate forms. The key, critical process is multicultural engagement, immersion, and adaptation."
And let's not forget, there is comfort and peace of mind in our home towns and cities. For example, our team here at Anderson Design Group creates art of Nashville and of Tennessee almost every day. And we love making vintage designs and illustrations of the hills and neighborhoods that we call home.
But art means pushing the envelope. Art means moving into the realms where the imagination has not yet wandered. And for artists, sometimes it takes traveling to a different country to tap into new creative energies and ideas. Our artistic minds may be a well-stocked fish pond, as Julia Cameron said. But it is a fish pond best-stocked when we "get a little international" and add Japanese Koi, Panamanian Swordfish, Siberian Muksun, French Cabillaud, Canadian River Trout, and others.
The World Travel Collection is For You
For a decade now, we've created about one vintage poster design per week for the World Travel Collection. And we're still making new art for this collection each week! We've loved learning about the countries and attractions we've drawn, lettered, and painted.
But this collection was never for us. This collection may have been imagined and inspired by our love for world travel, but this collection was meant to adorn your walls, your home, your office, your workshop, your studio. This collection was meant to serve as aesthetic home decor, vintage poster art, artistic centerpieces, conversation starters, mantle decorations, desk adornments, and design accents.
In the World Travel Collection, you can pick and choose from over 260 vintage designs to create a bucket list collage of all the great places you'd like to travel to. What better way to remind yourself of your goal to travel than with classic posters and retro designs hanging from your wall? These art prints serve as daily reminders of your next fantastic travel destination.
Or perhaps you've already done some traveling, and you'd like to remember the places you've been to. Travel art that is styled after the Golden Age of Illustration has a magical effect on how we remember the incredible places we've visited. There is a unique nostalgia and a reminiscent wonder embodied in vintage travel art. What better way to remember the countries you've been to than with a wall dedicated to poster art of each country you've visited?
Each design from the World Travel Collection is available as a classic art print, canvas, metal sign, or as a set of notecards or postcards. And with over 260 illustrations, multiple styles, and various sizes available, the decoration possibilities are endless.
How will you decorate your home with vintage poster art?
We hope that 2020 is a year of the arts and a year of travel for you. And for now, we'll leave you with the wise words of Saint Augustine:
"The world is a book. And those who do not travel read only one page."
Until next time,
Anderson Design Group Writing Staff