I am a 35 year old mapper from the UK who now lives in europe. I have been mapping for 4-5 years now so far exclusively for Counter-Strike source. I have to full-sized map releases, one cs map and one de map (cs_olympic and de_dust2_pro). Each of these projects took close to a year to develop in my spare time. I have one other finished cs map (cs_sigworld) which was my first finished full-map project, this remins basically unreleased. Although I have been considering releasing it "retrospectively" it is definitely inferior to my later work.
As a mapper I always try to find an original idea upon which to develop my maps. I dont like to feel I am just repeating what someone has already done. The idea for cs_olympic was simply a environmental theme I had never seen in a CSS map and I thought the large inside open space would provide an interesting environment to fight in. de_dust2_pro was a very different project. Ever since I first saw office_extended and such other maps I wanted to try to adapt an official map as an experience. The "concept" for dust2_pro was really to try to enhance and develop the existing character of the map... not to drown it with my changes. I have seen very few adapted maps that really seem to try to work with the existing strategies. I was interested to know if the concept would work, if I could take de_dust2 and give it a new personality that players would accept and enjoy.
I will continue to map for CSS but I believe I have a very good experience with CS now and I am interested to branch out and learn new techniques. I would be interested to get nto single player mapping to try to create environment that are more interactive and have more personality. I am also interested to try mapping for L4D2 as the engine is allows for more atmospheric environments. I would love one day to be a pro mapper.... but wouldnt all us amateurs?