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A Matter of Perspective

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#1
Daniel Huffman

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Just wanted to share here a project I am finally making public: a linear map of Lake Michigan. Basically, I cut and unfurled the lakeshore into a mostly-straight continuous line. Also, this is the subject of my upcoming PCD talk, so don't read if you don't want spoilers.

 

You can read in much more detail how this was made (and why) on my blog: http://somethingabou...of-perspective/. There's also a larger version there to browse through.

 

It was pretty fun to make, and I'm hoping to get through all of the Great Lakes, and then maybe put them all on an impractically-sized poster.

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#2
frax

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That is incredibly cool, great blog post too about how you did it!


Hugo Ahlenius
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#3
Hans van der Maarel

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Awesome Daniel, looking forward to your talk!


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#4
tangnar

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That's really cool, I especially like the "warm up your scrolling finger" comment in the blog. Especially since I am not from anywhere near the Great Lakes, I liked having this perspective. 

 

I agree that a horizontal would be ideal for print. That was one of the first things I thought of, actually... "It would be nice to see this printed and displayed horizontally on a wall." But I also understand the decision based on the digital world.  



#5
frax

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Daniel - did you consider using Illustrator's rotation/transformation tools for the "re-projection" - wouldn't that have worked as well? Markers would have been distorted, but that would be easy to fix.


Hugo Ahlenius
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#6
Daniel Huffman

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Daniel - did you consider using Illustrator's rotation/transformation tools for the "re-projection" - wouldn't that have worked as well? Markers would have been distorted, but that would be easy to fix.

 

I did try to do the transformation in Illustrator, but it was not quite working out how I liked. AI's distortion was adjusting the perspective, as well. I am not quite able to explain it very well, so I've attached a mockup of what was going on.

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#7
Kathi

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That's really cool, and in horizontal print it feels really natural, like sitting on a lakeshore an seeing it expand to your left and right with the water in front.

 

In a way, this perspective feels like the "opposite" of a 360° view from a single point, if you understand what I mean.


Cheers,

Kathi

#8
DaveB

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The map does make you look. :)

 

I like a lot of your thinking on this.

 

As someone who grew up in San Diego my mental image/map was always of the coast as a linear feature running pretty much straight north/south other than a few indentations like San Diego Bay and outcroppings like the curve around La Jolla. Imperfect (and incorrect) as that mental image may be it was a useful way to mentally map the area.


Dave Barnes
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