MapScaping

Why we do what we do We love natural landscapes and we love maps! Maps are perhaps as fundamental to society as language and the written word. Maps tell stories by recording information about the location and spatial characteristics of the natural world, and of society and culture. There is just something fascinating about looking at a landscape and imagining the processes that have shaped it. Maps are magical, they represent the past, the present and hint at the possibilities for the future. How do we create our maps? Our topographic map designs are based on elevation data. Each of our designs is the result of hundreds of millions of elevation measurements taken during the mission. These measurements are then filtered into a single elevation measurement for every 30 square meters or 98 square feet. Because the geographic location of each elevation measurement is known, it can displayed as a highly-detailed map. What we make Our high-resolution maps are made from real data. We process the data, add the colors and let nature do the rest. The result is a beautifully detailed 126 megapixel image of a landscape striped of vegetation, and man-made objects. We use two different design styles to highlight the natural topography of a landscape: Shaded style: Created by color-coding each pixel according to the ground elevation at that location. Lower elevations are displayed as dark shades and higher elevations as lighter shades. The contrast between these color shades reveals hidden patterns in a landscape. Solid style - : Created using a technique that mimics the sun's effects – illuminating, shading and casting shadows – on hills and valleys. This effect gives depth to the map and creates a 3D effect that highlights features in a landscape. All of our posters are printed on thick, durable, matte acid-free paper and printed in the USA.