GPS Art - Jeric Yuen
Hi everyone, I’m Jeric (aka @coderunnerguy). You sometimes find me running while drawing some GPS Arts around the London city as part of the initiative to help paralysed people to live an active life again.
I’m sort of an accidental runner as I remembered nearly 4 and a half years ago, I was asked to run my first ever half marathon for a charitable cause with the company’s without realizing that a half marathon is not really just a 10k in the park. A week after signing up, I got my team t-shirt with my name on it and my captain asked me about my training. I’ve casually told him that I don’t even need to do any training since it’s only 10k which I’ve then really found out from him that there is a reason why people called it a half marathon and not a 10k. The bright side of it is, I’ve still got 2 weeks before the race starts so 2 weeks of training and what could possibly go wrong, right? To tell you the truth, the longest distance I can run non-stop before the race was 7k, and I did manage to complete the race in the end finishing at 2h 17m. It was tough and I remembered being broken for a week after the race.
Few years down the road, I started falling in love with running bit by bit. I enjoy the freedom of running, being active, and being around like-minded people. I appreciate this feeling and understand the fact that not everyone is as fortunate as us. Hence I’ve decided to play my role and to give back to the community this time by fundraising for Spinal Research, a UK charity that funds ground-breaking medical research for spinal cord injury.
So how did all this GPS Arts challenge start?
It all started at the end of Dec 2019 where I’m up north in Glasgow to celebrate Christmas and I’ve found a park that looks like a GPA Art Human Face which I thought it’s a good idea to see if I can draw it out by running. One thing led to another and I’ve found another park that looks like a massive TRex. By the time I’m back in London, the idea sort of grew into a challenge to see if I can draw more and also to fundraise to help people with paralysis to live an active life again with the great charity of Spinal Research.
Up until now, I’ve drawn about 39 GPS Arts now and I sometimes organise GPS Arts events around London for people to join in the fun and to draw them together while meeting new running friends. It’s great fun when you see people turning up to draw a surprise GPS Art which they only find out what we’ve drawn at the end of the run. The happy expression on their face at the end of the run especially after they synced back the run to their phone which they then found out what we’ve drawn is just priceless.
How do you get the idea on what to draw for a GPS Art?
Most of the time I tend to see a lot of animal shapes around all the lines on a map. From there I guess you need a bit of imagination to see what the lines look like. It can be an eye or a head or even a horn of an animal and then you just start drawing from there.
How long does it take to plan a single GPS Art?
It all depends on how big the drawing is and also how much detail I want to put into the GPS Art. The more details it is, or the bigger the drawing is, the longer it takes to plan things out. Planning itself sometimes can take from 1 hour to maybe 6 hours or longer (that’s not including the running time yet). So it’s a long process behind the scenes that people don’t tend to see.
Will you be doing any other future GPS Art events?
Most probably that’s a yes. It all depends on how busy I am as I’m currently training for the London Marathon so time wise is kind of tricky at the moment.
I would say, do follow my GPS Art journey through IG to find out more about any new upcoming event or new GPS art coming up. There will definitely be more future group GPS Art events as it’s great fun.
You can follow Jeric on Instagram here