Artistic cartography: creative ways to peel the globe

On October 28, I gave a TEDx talk at TEDxUW 2017. A transcript and some slides from my prepared (as opposed to delivered) talk is below.

The experience was fantastic. The organizers did a great job putting on the event. I especially found the time we (us speakers) spent with the speaking coaches (Speaker Labs‘ Eric and Eli) very valuable.

And here’s a link to the video which was posted March 2018.

Continue reading “Artistic cartography: creative ways to peel the globe”


Home in the Summer

home in the summer

Here is a new art piece by my brother Michael Swart and I. It’s an equirectangular drawing, drawn with no photography, stitching, or computer modelling. Set in a place that’s meaningful to me: my home, outside, in the summer.

You can read more about the techniques in my earlier blogpost here. What’s special about this one is two things.

  1. It’s especially detailed. To do the pencils, I bought a large (14″ x 17″) pad of paper.
  2. It’s a collaboration with my brother Michael! I did the pencils, and we scanned it and he did the inking for that comic book look.

Below is a rundown of how this drawing progressed. Continue reading “Home in the Summer”

“Variety”: A Christmas Card Adventure


Heya! My name’s Evan, and I’m D.M.Swart’s son! You might remember me, as there were photos and mentions of me in the previous blog post about a woodcut known as “Frog”. Speaking of which, we’re here to tell you about our other woodcuts (and linocuts) we’ve done over the past few years. First things first, this is not going to be a how-to – just a plain and simple recording of our trials. Here are some of our other cards:

Now, this blog post is about our latest card. When I say trial and error, this definitely has to be one of our most error-y cards yet. You may wonder why this post is titled “Variety”. It’s because we got a variety of “quality”.

Continue reading ““Variety”: A Christmas Card Adventure”

Dos and Don’ts of Scrambled Rubik’s Cube Costumes.

It’s Halloween and from time to time you will see some Rubik’s Cube costumes. As one does.  Some of them are store-bought.  The great ones are do-it-yourself jobs. Who wouldn’t want to take on the task of making a cardboard costume?  Of these homemade costumes, the scrambled cubes are the most interesting to look at.  And of the scrambled cube costumes, the ones that could theoretically be solved are the best.

So I want to talk to you – the scrambled, homemade, Rubik’s Cube costume makers – about how to place your coloured panels.  Here’s a list of things to keep in mind when placing your colours so that your costume ends up solvable earning this Swart Seal of Solvability:seal

Continue reading “Dos and Don’ts of Scrambled Rubik’s Cube Costumes.”

Drawing a Spherical Panorama

A spherical panorama is one that captures, not just 360° around, but all the way up and down too. It captures every direction. I want to show you how you can hand draw (or sketch, paint, etc.) these panoramas.  

For instance, here’s my kitchen.


And if you can draw one that adheres to the equirectangular projection, you can upload it to sites like Flickr and Facebook which provide interactive panorama viewers like these ones:

interactive_kitchen interactive_boysroom interactive_work_kitchen interactive_living_room

Hand drawn panoramas are an uncommon art form but they aren’t new. Artists like Dick Termes, Matthew Lopas, Jackie Lima, Arno Hartman, and Tom Lechner have been drawing or painting complete or ultra-wide-angle panoramas for some time. Matthew Lopas’ facebook page features many such paintings, and Tom Lechner’s flickr group has more examples.

Fun right? It seems there are as many ways to accomplish hand drawn panoramas as there are artists doing this. I can show you how I did mine. Follow along.

Continue reading “Drawing a Spherical Panorama”