Runner Uses App To Make Elaborate Artwork On His Routes

You can find artistic inspiration everywhere if you look hard enough. Just ask Lenny Maughan, a runner in San Francisco who maps out elaborates designs with his routes.

For the past four years, Lenny has been carefully choosing his paths through the city so that when they show up on his maps, they form illustrations.

Aww, a lovely cat. Credit: Lenny Maughan/Strava
Aww, a lovely cat. Credit: Lenny Maughan/Strava

He's drawn all sorts of images with his feet, his most recent being the Mexican painter Frida Kahlo's face - which has been done with impeccable attention to detail, right down to her distinctive unibrow.

Aside from the pièce de résistance, the runner has covered all sorts of shapes over the years, from simple outlines such as hearts, to more complex designs like the Starship Enterprise.

That'll be the Starship Enterprise, then. Credit: Lenny Maughan/Strava
That'll be the Starship Enterprise, then. Credit: Lenny Maughan/Strava

But it's his Frida map that's got people talking. The snap is doing the rounds after his pal uploaded it to Reddit, writing: "My friend Lenny does some pretty incredible running art in SF. This is his latest piece, a 28.9 mile 3500 ft elevation change Frida Kahlo."

Although the route was nearly 29 miles, it took Lenny just six hours and eight minutes to run.

Speaking to The Guardian about his intriguing hobby, he said: "When I was a kid everyone thought I'd be an artist when I grew up - I was always drawing things."

As well as being a long distance runner, Lenny is a Star Trek fan, something which inspired his first work of art.

It all kicked off when Leonard Nimoy, who played Spock, died in 2015 and so Lenny decided to run a route outlining the Vulcan salute.

You know, the Vulcan salute. Credit: Paramount/CBS
You know, the Vulcan salute. Credit: Paramount/CBS

"I just printed out a paper map and sketched a hand shape along Market Street and the other fingers, thumb and wrist came pretty easily," he said.

He then moved on to a television set in an area that helped birth the invention of the TV, then a Batman logo covering a large chunk of the city.

"The larger you go, the more fine-tuned you can make the shape," he explained.

Credit: Lenny Maughan/Strava
Credit: Lenny Maughan/Strava

When discussing the motive behind his artwork, Lenny added: "This is just a way to make the streets my own."

If you would like to make your own map-based masterpieces, you can do the same as Lenny via the app Strava.

It's probably best to start small, though - running such long distances is no easy feat. A beach ball perhaps? Or maybe a piece of string?

Featured Image Credit: Lenny Maughan/Strava

Daisy Phillipson

Daisy is a UK-based freelance journalist with too many opinions. She loves everything film and music-related and has a track record writing for Little White Lies, BWRC, and Film Daily. Contact her at [email protected]

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