You probably had no idea a job like this even existed in the modern world. It’s a trade that takes patience, math skills, an understanding of aesthetics, science, cartography and flawless technique.
Back in 2008, Peter Bellerby founded Bellerby & Co. Globemakers after he was unable to locate an exceptional globe for his father’s 80th birthday. He went from running a successful bowling alley business to making these spherical wonders for a living. It took him 18 months to perfect the painstaking craft.
Before embarking upon this journey down the road less traveled, there was only one other person in the world making traditional handmade globes.
Bellerby & Co. is seriously one of the most fascinating companies we’ve ever heard of. If you happen to have an appreciation for geography and travel, you will be completely amazed by their creations. These aren’t just your run-of-the-mill globes that you’d find in a classroom. They are beautiful and grandeur.
Bellerby and his staff do everything by hand at their studio in Stoke Newington, London: the stand, the map making, and the painting. It’s not an easy task.
The individual strips of map, or gore, must be applied extremely carefully. Even the smallest error could result in the entire globe being ruined. Each member of his team must spend at least six months training to learn how to properly construct a globe. The most difficult part of the process is molding the pieces of map to the shape of the globe. Goring requires deep concentration, without distraction.
The amount of work that goes into creating just a single globe is enough to explain the steep price—starting at around $1,000 and reaching upwards of $100,000.
“The map has to be stretched into place while wet and extremely fragile, and it is a case of learning how to use your hands in a very delicate manner,” he explains. “Every movement has to be in slow motion for fear of damaging the paper.”
You can get more information about Bellerby & Co. Globemakers here.