Q&A: Dan Linden, founder Cut Maps

Jillian Span Hofbauer

Linden makes laser-cut wall art and gifts.

Why maps?

Maps have been around for so long, but people hadn't really done them in a unique fashion. Just displaying a map of a city displays your pride for that city. My feelings for Columbus are the reason Cut Maps is here. It's like having extreme pride for the city you live in and then having a cool way to show it.

How many do you produce in a week?

As the company grew, it was growing in Virginia because they had lasers, they had people and everything was set up down there. [Linden's business partner is based in Virginia.] But I wanted to be more local because I live here. And I wanted Cut Maps to be a Columbus brand. Once I got my studio space [in the campus area], I had a laser up here so that I could cut locally. In Columbus going into Christmastime, I'm probably doing 30 to 50 a week. Then down in Virginia, probably 200–300 a week because that's where we do all the stuff nationally and internationally from the websites we sell on, so we're always shipping out of there.

Where would you love to see one of your maps in the future?

I'd love to see one in a really big size in a government building. Theoretically, I could do a map of Ohio that included every single road in the entire state, down to the street that you live on. It would have to be huge, but wouldn't that be awesome?

Bonus facts:

He's produced maps of more than 400 cities and numerous countries.

On average, each map takes 15 minutes to design and about 1.5 hours to laser cut.