Stickers on the Central Line, London Underground

I don’t normally post works that I can’t trace back to an original source, but I’ll make an exception for these hilarious and superbly executed “prank” stickers found on the London Underground. Matching the original strip map almost exactly, they instead insert something unexpected, pointed, or just plain funny. Strangely, or just coincidentally, all the examples here use the Central Line as their canvas.

My favourite? Change at Tottenham Court Road for a submarine to Somalia, complete with a very plausible London Underground submarine icon.

More here in this imgur album. Hat tip to Twitter user Ben Darfler.

53. No Playing Strip Quidditch with any of the girls.

Now THERE was a game of Quidditch I could get behind. - SB

I’m so mad I missed half the game because of my stupid detention. - PP

Next time get your homework done on time. - RL

I didn’t think I would enjoy it, but I have to admit, I had a splendid time. - RL

Those girls were much better than I thought they were going to be. I wonder if any of them would be willing to come to tryouts … - JP

We were playing Strip Quidditch. You need to focus a little less on the second word, and a little more on the first. - SB

Photo - Official Map: Strip Map for the Gold Coast Light Rail, Queensland, Australia

Here’s a rare example of an illustrated strip map, used above the doors on the Gold Coast’s G:Link light rail vehicles in Australia. Despite my self-professed preference for clean, minimalist, ordered design, I actually love this map to bits.

Why? Because “sense of place” and community are the absolute winners here. The two-colour illustration style is charming and whimsical, while the instantly recognisable landmarks link the whole coast together from north to south. Most importantly, people are shown smiling and having fun, which is what the Gold Coast is meant to be about. I particularly like the way that the lining “route line” becomes breaking waves when the route gets nearer to the beaches. Fun!

Of course, this approach only works because the G:Line has one route: you can just read the big, bold and unmissable station names from one end of the map to the other to find your stop. Any split in the line to a different destination would be too hard to read with this illustration style.

Our rating: When you have but a single LRT line, you can have a bit of fun with the way it’s shown on a map. Joyous, bright and fun! Four stars.

Source: Brent Toderian/Twitter

Mey’s Monthly Memorables!

Admin recs of May 2016.


A Friend Of A Friend, These Strangers At The Party Never Paid - phanlight

Summary: “I left phone number on the bathroom stall wall and you text me about your day and your frustrations for a month & it’s really nice and cute but I still don’t know who you are” AU.

All Fun and Games - jilliancares

Summary: praisekink!dan and strip poker.

A Map of My Heart and Mind (ao3) - Cadensaurus (Jira)

Summary: Dan and Phil get drunk and wake up married in Vegas, the day after Dan’s 25th birthday. Dan thinks they could just get it annulled but Dan knows what marriage means to Phil, how important it is, and he wonders if they can just fake it for a year so it’s not a total waste and then divorce. Of course, a year is a long time to pretend to be married and things can always change

Fifty Kisses to Christmas (ao3) - nokomisfics

Summary: phil reads an article online about research that suggest ‘kissing reduces stress levels’, and dan is stressed about videos, christmas pressure and other commitments. phil starts kissing him to get him to chill out and enjoy the holiday season.

Glow - danthrusts

Summary: Being a witch is fun until everything is blowing up around you


Opposites Attract (wattpad) - Phangirlss_

Summary: Phil likes everything about his life, he likes his job, he likes being a Dad, he likes his style and he really likes the cute guy who works at Starbucks and wears pastel colors.

Sharing - trysomecats

Summary: Dan has a difficult time sharing his boyfriend with others.

You’ll Just Have To Keep Quiet - snazzydan

Summary: The bus is a risky place to do this, but Dan doesn’t care.

You’ve Got The TV - twentydanfics

Summary: Dan is feeling slightly homesick while on tour, and uses Phil’s room’s TV as an excuse to be close to him.


Good Sins - jilliancares

 Summary: Dan knows masturbation is a sin, but Phil knows that it feels great.

Late Nights, Early Mornings (ao3) - dxmised

Summary: “I may have accidentally had sex with my boyfriend’s twin last night…and he didn’t stop me.”

Missing Pieces (ao3) - ramonaspeaks

Summary: Dan has always known that he wants everything from Phil. If he can’t have that, he’ll still take the pieces he can get.

Pastels and Wedding Plans - doseofantiseptic

Summary: Phil Lester is a ball of sunshine wedding planner hired to coordinate Winston Howell’s wedding. It’s a big job, so Winston offers up the help of his younger brother, Dan Howell.

The Bartender - phangirlingforphan

Summary: The one where Dan goes to a gay bar to convince himself he’s straight and meets Phil Lester, the slightly clumsy bartender who throws his whole plan upside down as soon as he smiles. 


I’m a stitch away from making it (and a scar away from falling apart)

- arcticphan

Summary:  Dan Howell is ‘the next big thing’ and Phil Lester is not good for publicity, will the increasing fame create tensions that simply cannot be overcome? Band au, with singer!dan and non-famous  Phil. Established relationship. Fluff and angst.

In My Way (ao3) -  INeverHadMyInternetPhase

Summary: Daniel Howell is 21 and Britain’s newest star. He’s just been cast in the much-anticipated film adaption of Last Man Standing, the popular teen fantasy novel with a huge fanbase hanging off his every tweet. In other words, Dan has made it big.Phil Lester couldn’t care less. He’s a stressed out PHD student working part time at a bookshop while he struggles to get into post-production. He’s 26 and still lives in a tiny flat on the fifth floor of a building with a lift more broken than it is in use. He loves books, but he thinks big film adaptions screw with the plot too much.Needless to say, Phil is less than impressed when Last Man Standing is getting filmed in his hometown. And he certainly doesn’t want anything to do with obnoxious, arrogant, so irritatingly perfect leading actor Daniel Howell.

Your Thoughts (wattpad) - Maaaaaaarge

Summary: (tw) In a world where soul mates exist , a person can hear the thoughts of their soul mate; however, if your soul mate rejects you can no longer hear his or her thoughts. Dan Howell didn’t want a soul mate, so he rejected his soul mate as soon as he could. He can still hear his soul mate’s thoughts, but is persistent to ignore them. What Dan doesn’t know is that when fate makes a decision one simply doesn’t avoid it.


A Map Of My Heart And Mind (ao3) - cadensaurus 

Summary: Dan and Phil get drunk and wake up married in Vegas, the day after Dan’s 25th birthday. Dan thinks they could just get it annulled but Dan knows what marriage means to Phil, how important it is, and he wonders if they can just fake it for a year so it’s not a total waste and then divorce. Of course, a year is a long time to pretend to be married and things can always change…

Falling Down To The Sky (ao3) - victor_kaiser

Summary: In which Dan is an art student struggling with depression and Phil a life model who seems to live in his own mind.

Right Where We Are (ao3) - thatsmistertoyou

Summary: Dan’s feeling lonely between Christmas and New Year’s Eve, so Phil invites him to stay with his family for a few days.

The Douchebag (ao3) - novastars

Summary: Phil works in a small library where a local douchebag keeps moving the books and putting them on the wrong shelves.

[ヘタリア]おめでとうございます[腐:英仏] Pixiv ID: 6838601
Member: あきはる

Permission to upload this has been granted by the artist. 

Design Resource: Transport for London’s “Line Diagram Standards” Guide

Definitely worth a look to see how a major transit agency puts together a comprehensive guide to assembling consistently designed maps. The guide deals with horizontal in-car strip maps and the vertical line maps seen on platforms, but many of the principles still hold true for the design of a full transit map.

Of particular interest is the relationship between the x-height of Johnston Sans and the thickness of the route lines (they’re the same). This value of “x” is also used to calculate the radius of a curve in a route line: the innermost edge of a curve is always three times the value of “x” – never any less. Almost every relationship between objects on the map is defined mathematically, although the nomenclature can be a little less than intuitive sometimes: “x”, “n” and “CH” all make an appearance!

Also, if you ever wanted to know what the PANTONE or CMYK breakdowns for all the Underground route line colours are, this guide tells you that, too!

All in all, a really interesting read – just try and ignore the terrible typos that pop up here and there: “donated” instead of “denoted” on page 11 is my favourite! Click on the image or the link below to download the PDF.

(Source: Transport for London website - 2MB PDF)

The Strip, a hand-drawn map from the 1954 Las Vegas city directory. This area, just south of the city limits, then had six resort-casinos: Sands, Desert Inn, Flamingo, Thunderbird, Last Frontier and El Rancho Vegas. 

Additional map - Main Strip and Mayor’s Building

The Main Strip is where the town hall, social hall, justice hall, police station, and few shops and cafes are located.

The Mayor’s Building is the official residence of the incumbent mayor of the town. The building also serves as a museum as some rooms are open for public tours (although appointment must be in advance). 

Mexico City Metro Linea 3 Map… or List

About as simple and directly to-the-point as a line map can get. Really, it’s just a bulleted list, with each station’s icon serving as the bullet. Of note though, is how each icon has its own very distinct shape within the square (with a rounded corner) framework. Each is easily identifiable, even from a bit of a distance. 

Source: dogseat/Flickr


Subway Maps in Mario Kart 8 “Super Bell Subway” Course

Sent my way by quite a few people now! Taken from a new DLC map set inside a subway station and the surrounding tracks, we have quite the array of maps! Here we have a map for the whole system, a strip map for the Orange Line, and even a locality map!

The main subway map itself is pretty non-descript and generic – not a lot to say about this. The strip map, however, is pretty neat: it indicates direction of travel and the final destination nicely, as well as the name of the next station. Numbers here refer to the station number along each line, rather than representing the line itself as a whole. Hence, “our” station of Golden Bell is O4/B6/R4, being the fourth station along the Orange Line, the sixth on the Blue, and the fourth again on the Red. We can see that Ribbon Road station (O5) also serves as B7, and so on. This kind of numbering of stations along route lines occurs quite often in Asian transit systems, so it’s no surprise to see it in a game produced in Japan.

The locality map is very handsome, showing an interesting radial street pattern with lots of parkland and the lovely Toad Harbor. However, the layout of the Metro lines shown leaving the station doesn’t match the subway map at all. Blue and Orange diverge immediately after leaving the station in both directions, instead of staying concurrent in the direction of Ribbon Road and Baby Park stations.

Source: this imgur album


Submission – Unofficial reworking of the UTA FrontRunner Strip Map by Jeromiah Drennan (and me)

Submitted by Jeromiah, who says:

After the post about the new Frontrunner map (August 2016, 2.5 stars), inspiration came to make one of my own.

My map has what was mentioned: TRAX connections, bus connections, and Greyhound (but not Amtrak, If you look at Salt Lake Central on my map you’ll see why) I took out the the lines and changed the north and south pointers. I made the purple line dashed between Ogden and Pleasant View to show the limited serviceThe labels for TRAX and Greyhound are based off of what the London Underground uses on their maps for transfers. I also thought It would be important to take out the legend completely, so I designed the map so it wouldn’t need it. Fonts used are Whitney Medium and Whitney Book.

I’m hoping to send this to UTA soon, but I thought I’d post it here first.

What are your thoughts? Do the bus route numbers make the map cluttered? What improvements do I need to make?

Transit Maps says:

Nice work, Jeromiah! I think your solution is well thought out and nicely executed overall. Your station name labels are perhaps a little too close to their respective dots for my liking, and I have a feeling that you’ve given yourself too much extra vertical space compared to the original map, which is a little cheaty. However, the original photo shows the map on a very curved surface, so it’s a little hard to tell for sure. I think your north and south indicators are better than the original: the grey visually separates them from the route line, and the arrows work well to define them as compass directions. 

I’m not so sure about the dashed line indicating the limited service to Pleasant View – without a legend, it could be misinterpreted as meaning “under construction”. Destination signs and announcements should let riders know where the last stop is: a map like this is for locating where you are and counting the number of stops until you get off, not explaining the minutiae of the operating schedule.

You’re on the right track with the connecting services information: located below the route line to separate it from the station name, and ordered logically. The bus numbers are perhaps a little small, and still run into each other a little bit – so they can still look like a long string of random numbers rather than distinct bus numbers.

Underneath your map is one that I independently developed almost immediately after my original post and shared on Twitter. You can see that it has a lot of similarities to yours, but I’ve explicitly placed each bus number inside a box, which is then arranged in a grid to help visually separate all those numbers from each other. Also, all my type is horizontal, because it takes up less vertical space (more room for the bus numbers!) and it reads more easily. I really should add the UTA contact information as Jeromiah has done, though – a useful touch, though perhaps the Facebook/Twitter/Instagram icons are less useful without their associated handles.

Mexico City Metro Linea 1 Strip Map

If you’re going to use icons for each of your stations, as Mexico City does, then why not make them nice and big and simply arrange them in the correct order?

More from Wikipedia on the iconography of the Mexico City Metro:

Each station is identified by a minimalist logo related to the name of the station or the area around it. This is because, at the time of the first line’s opening, the illiteracy rate was extremely high, so people found it easier to guide themselves with a system based on colors and visual signs. The design of the icons and the typography are a creation of Lance Wyman, who also designed the logotype for the 1968 Summer Olympic Games at Mexico City. The logos are not assigned at random; rather, they are designated by considering the surrounding area, such as:

  • The reference places that are located around the stations (e.g., the logo for Salto del Agua fountain depicts a fountain);
  • The topology of an area (e.g., Coyoacán—in Nahuatl “place of coyotes"—depicts a coyote); and
  • The history of the place (e.g., Juárez, named after President Benito Juárez, depicts his silhouette).

The logos’ background colors reflect those of the line the station serves. Stations serving two or more lines show the respective colors of each line in diagonal stripes, as in Salto del Agua.

(Source: Universe’s universe/Flickr)