Tin Horse puts city guides on the map

Tin Horse has designed the format and structure for a series of pocket-sized travel guides aimed at the weekend and business traveller published today by Compass Maps.

The work, which includes merchandising units to display the guides in-store, is worth in the region of £100 000 in design fees.

Compass Maps managing director Derek Dacey says the brief was to create the ‘Porsche of maps’. He adds, ‘Maps have tended to be about as utilitarian a product as you can imagine. [We wanted] to add a design element and emphasise quality and portability, while keeping the guides pocket-sized.’

Tin Horse’s design concept involves a durable and flexible moulded-plastic spine that houses a slide-out pen and a liquid-filled compass. When the guide is open, the compass flips up and rotates through 180 degrees to be viewed alongside the map.

Tin Horse director John Lamb says, ‘We faced the age old problem of form and function. There has to be a visual cue, but at the same time the design has to work perfectly.’

Lamb and designer Zoe Trevitt were creative leads on the project.

Qube Design is working on the graphical layout and typography for the series. The initial design fee was ‘approaching £40 000’ and the consultancy is being paid £8000 per title as the series evolves, says Dacey.

Qube Design partner Chris Bond and senior designer Paul Durrant are leading the project.

The Inside Out guides will ultimately cover 48 cities around the world and 12 have been produced so far. They feature two pages of ‘pop-up’ maps, along with an illustrated city guide.

Both consultancies were appointed without a pitch and began working on the project in late 2000.

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