Wildsam Field Guides
Tell us about your business.Wildsam started with a line from Steinbeck: "The world was peopled with wonders." We believe that to be true, that both where we live and where we travel offer unlimited discoveries for the curious. And Wildsam Field Guides help people have the kinds of experiences they'll never forget. We do this through bespoke, back-pocket sized books filled with interviews, hand-drawn maps, historical almanac fodder, personal essays and a short list of city favorites. It’s our hope that the field guides feel more like a keepsake than weekend planner. Because places are more than trips. Places give people the context for who they are and where they come from. Places are magnificent and they are mundane – and every inch of every place tells a story that connects people. This is where Wildsam lives. In October 2012, we launched Wildsam with our Nashville field guide. Austin released in May 2013. In October, San Francisco will hit the streets, with four more in the works.
What makes your business stand out?Our books are more than a way to build a weekend getaway. They are a way to connect with dozens of locals helping to make their cities come alive. We don't use photographs in our field guides for two reasons. First, we absolutely love illustration. Second, we think photographs slow down the imagination. With a design that bridges retro and modern, we've found that people enjoy collecting Wildsams like they keep vintage National Geographic magazines.
What's the best business advice you've received?We've learned more in the last year than we could have ever imagined. But what's been most valuable to know is this: Making something that's compelling, genuine and beautiful matters the most. Said another way, Get the product right and everything else will fall into place. Granted there's a lot to do after you bring an idea into the world. But, we found that the most powerful moments in starting Wildsam have always been putting the field guides in people's hands.
Mark Your Calendar
NominationsJune 3–Aug. 29, 2014
Nominate yourself or other aspiring makers.
JudgingJune 23–Sept. 9, 2014
Judges will select finalists throughout this period.Meet the judges
Online VotingSept. 15–Oct. 13, 2014
Vote for your favorite American makers.See the finalists
Winners AnnouncedOct. 17, 2014
2014 Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.See past Award Winners
American Made EventNov. 7–8, 2014
Join us for our annual event in New York City.Buy tickets now