Preface: My primary purpose of this post is to convince you to watch this Neil Gaiman commencement speech – one of my favorite presentations of all time.
In 6th grade a friend taught me to draw a simple maze, and since then I’ve drawn mazes on chalkboards, envelopes, sidewalks, and any other surface I can find. For this 2-week experiment I drew a maze every day, producing 14 little pieces of art.
Day 1. I decided to draw a maze on a Post-it Note. It’s small so I can create it in just a few minutes. Also, I have to think ahead a bit, because there isn’t much room for messing around. Third, the Post-it is the perfect size and shape to scan and upload to Instagram, which seemed fun, so I tried it. Here is Maze #1.
Day 2, 3, 4. By drawing mazes on Post-It Notes, I developed a quick idea, executed it, and 3 minutes later created a thing to share.
Day 5, 6, 7. I added another Post-It Note maze over the weekend, and then began thinking about other maze-related art to create, like larger art projects or something related to the process.
Day 8. As I was cleaning up some old journals today I found mazes I had drawn years ago, so I posted them. After uploading, I wasn’t sure what to do with the hard copies of papers and Post-Its. Keep in a drawer? Throw them away? Stick them on a wall?
Day 9. I have never had formal training in “maze design,” and I don’t even know if there such a thing. So today I tried to figure out how to make an effective maze in a very small space – a 6×6 grid. With only 36 squares I created this.
It was not the most challenging puzzle, but maybe a good start toward “basic maze theory” (again, I think I made that up). What are the fewest number of grid squares to make a truly challenging maze? What makes a maze fun?
Day 10. As I figure out how many 6×6 mazes I can make, I felt like I was learning something, and I had a feeling I might’ve stumbled upon actual design principles with real names and rules and stuff. Or maybe I’m just a big nerd. Probably both.
Day 11. I got some new pink Post-it Notes! Woohoo!
Day 12-14. I found and scanned a few more older mazes. I also thought about some fun ideas for the future, like sticking the Post-It notes randomly in public places so people could work a maze if they wanted to, or just take it with them.
For now I’ll keep messing around with it, posting mazes as I make them at @littlemazes on Instagram.