A Visual Bucket List Focused on Washington and Oregon

A Visual Bucket List Focused on Washington and Oregon - student project

"I think the great appeal to me is not only the fact that you can plan and you can dream and you're almost there — by looking at the maps, you're sort of almost there. But the other great appeal really is how it sort of relates to our history; how it sort of tells our human tales." --Simon Garfield

A Visual Bucket List Focused on Washington and Oregon - image 1 - student project

Why am I making this map? For fun? A client? A gift? To showcase my favorite places? Etc.
It's a bit fanciful, but I think a map would create a fun visual of my PNW "bucket list" (for lack of a better phrase).  I am moving from Austin, TX to Portland, OR this summer (new college grad here!), and I am excited to explore this new territory.  I have lived in Texas my entire life, so the Pacific Northwest will be an entirely new experience for me.  I've been researching the trails and parks and towns up there, and have started compiling a list of places to visit on weekends and holidays. 

Why am I the expert to create this map?
I'm not!  But I think my lack of expertise gives me an interesting perspective in creating this map.  All I know is what I've researched and read about, and not what I've actually experienced.  I think it will be interesting to see the unintential biases in my finished map, and reflect on them after a year or two of first hand experiences.

Who is my target audience?
Anyone with a little bit of wanderlust.

Do I want my final project to be printed or digital? How is going to be used/held? What other constraints do I need to keep in mind moving forward? 
I want a digital final (although it'd be fun to print it out and tape it to my fridge).  I hope Portland is just one of my many future homes, and I think it'd be excellent to create "bucket list" and travel maps for all the new locations I move to.  I like the digital medium because I can create updated versions over my time in each place.  The major constraint is my amatuer knowledge of the software that will make this possible, but I have plains to take other courses that will help me bridge that gap.  

What level of detail do I need to include? (Names, addresses, contact info, street names, website, hours, descriptions, color coding, etc.)
The most important details for me are the local name for each places, as well as textures and colors (color coding) that reflect the geographic diversity of the different areas.

Dear class, I need your help/expertise/guidance on how to.....
I think I'll wait to fill this one out as I go along and questions arise.  Although, for starters, if anyone can point me in the right direction towards online resources regarding design software (specifically guides for using InDesign, Photoshop and other CS5 applications), that'd be excellent!

A Visual Bucket List Focused on Washington and Oregon - image 2 - student project

I've also sketched out the extended road trip plan for my move up to Portland (starting from my hometown near Dallas).  This class has inspired me, and I think I may take this sketch to the next level too, as a separate project!