Geography Champ Finds Calling: Senior Champ Turner’s YouTube Map Drawing Channel Takes Off

Luci Garza, Staffer

The social media platform YouTube enables users to show off artistry, hobbies and other topics that people are passionate about. Channels ranging from makeup tutorials to children’s toy reviews have blown up on the platform and launched everyday people into the public eye. Senior Champ Turner is one of many young people who have taken to the internet to share videos showing off their talents. Turner’s channel, titled Maps From Memory, was started over the summer of 2019 and features videos of him drawing complete, detailed maps solely from memory. His ability to memorize maps came from his natural interest in geography and reading atlases. In his videos, he shows off his artistic and geographical capabilities by using his hands, his mind and various different mediums. Some videos feature classic paper and pencil
while others use chalk and a sidewalk. Turner doesn’t use any stencils to help while drawing. “I started Maps From Memory in the summer of 2019 as a way to document my talent to draw, as the name implies, maps from memory,” Turner said. Turner said he has always had an interest in geography and has enjoyed drawing maps.
He says the natural interest has also helped keep him motivated to create and post videos. “I’ve always liked studying geography and reading the atlas,” Turner said. “So I’ve kind of developed this talent as a result. I’ve been drawing maps for a couple years now and have really honed my skills in that.” His videos started out simple. From there, they have grown into more complex maps, and Turner plans to keep growing them. “My first video was a map of the USA will all fifty states,” Turner said. “From there, I’ve gone on to draw South America, Canada, Europe and Africa. Once I finish the continents, I plan to learn how to do the states of India, Brazil, Mexico, etc.” Being relatively new in the world of Youtube, Turner’s channel is still growing each month with each video that he posts. According to Turner, the amount of views on his videos and the number of people subscribed to his channel can sometimes fluctuate. “I currently have thirty-three subscribers, down from thirty-four last month, which is an L,” Turner said. With a video schedule to help him keep on track, he can organize his ideas and plans better. He often uses school breaks to plan, practice, film and memorize his work. “Making and editing the videos is a lot of fun, but I usually only film during breaks when I have more time,” Turner said. He still has many hopes, as there are so many more maps for him to draw. However, according to Turner, the account just needs a big break to kick off its popularity. “I think this channel has potential to catch on,” Turner said. “But right now I’m in the early stages of publicizing it.”