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#1
Bethan Davies

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Hi there,

I'm a publisher of walking guides to Spain & Portugal.

We're in the early stages of planning a map to the Camino de Santiago, a pilgrimage across the north of Spain (our map will cover some 850km or so).

I'm hoping that I can get some help in brainstorming the best format for this map. It seems to me that a book format would work better than a folded map, but I'm thinking of a 4" x 8.5" size so that it would fit into store map racks. I'd welcome any other ideas on format.

My main question is orientation. The route mostly runs east to west. Should the book be vertical, with the route running from bottom to top? Or horizontal (bound on the short side)? In a horizontal book, the route would run from the right to the left of the page. This makes a traditional, western front-to-back book seem clumsy. Would it be crazy to have the book reading from back to front so that the route flows better?

Thanks for any help. This is my first post after a month or so of lurking and I'm blown away by the passion for maps & intelligent, beautiful design I've seen.

Bethan
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#2
Lui

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I would try with vertical design of your map with bottom to top orientation
I also suggest that if you are intending to use same scale for all pages, use same orientation (W-E) for all pages of you map book.

It is an interesting project. Especially if you are planing to do some field work. :)

Lui

#3
CHART

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Lots of things to consider...

I would suggest an index map... with a reference to the strip (section) map page.
Don't be affraid to overlap sections in your layout.

Regards,
Chart

#4
Hans van der Maarel

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My main question is orientation. The route mostly runs east to west. Should the book be vertical, with the route running from bottom to top? Or horizontal (bound on the short side)? In a horizontal book, the route would run from the right to the left of the page. This makes a traditional, western front-to-back book seem clumsy. Would it be crazy to have the book reading from back to front so that the route flows better?


Hello Bethan,

I would pick vertical, top to bottom. Align every page so that the route runs more or less vertically straight. Large overlaps and sharp angles between 2 consecutive maps are no problem, as long as you provide an index map and a north arrow (and, on each page, indicate where overlapping pages start/stop)

One of my clients finished a book like that recently (nautical map for a river in Holland), I can post some photos of that when I'm back home (next week), if you like.
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
Red Geographics
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#5
Lui

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I would pick vertical, top to bottom. Align every page so that the route runs more or less vertically straight. Large overlaps and sharp angles between 2 consecutive maps are no problem, as long as you provide an index map and a north arrow (and, on each page, indicate where overlapping pages start/stop)

One of my clients finished a book like that recently (nautical map for a river in Holland), I can post some photos of that when I'm back home (next week), if you like.


Hmmm, Hans I'm not sure that top to bottom is the best orientation. I think that bottom to top is beter because book is oriented in same way that pilgrim path. User can better read what is in front of him.

#6
MapMedia

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I too suggest top-bottom, that's how I tend to read anyway. :P But a focus group / informal survey of users might be useful. I tend to be frustrated by index maps unless they cover such small scale areas.

#7
Martin Gamache

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I tend to be frustrated by index maps unless they cover such small scale areas.



Maybe this is a topic for another discussion but can you be more specific about what frustrates you about index maps? Or better yet, how would you describe a perfect index map.

#8
Dennis McClendon

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Than Longen Folk to Goon on Pilgrimages

Is the pilgrimage only walked east to west? Pilgrims don't walk back home?

A folded map will probably be about a third the cost of a booklet, depending on booklet binding method and quantity.

Personally I would lay out the maps so the viewer starts at the bottom of the page. I also might make each spread a longer strip than would be possible if a strip only occupies one page.
Dennis McClendon, Chicago CartoGraphics
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#9
Hans van der Maarel

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Hmmm, Hans I'm not sure that top to bottom is the best orientation. I think that bottom to top is beter because book is oriented in same way that pilgrim path. User can better read what is in front of him.


Oops... :unsure:

I did actually mean to say bottom to top. That way it looks more 'natural'.

Dennis,

Is the pilgrimage only walked east to west? Pilgrims don't walk back home?


They do, but the whole goal of the pilgrimage is to get to Santiago de Compostella (eh... "goal" in a geographic sense of course).
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
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#10
natcase

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What about a long strip folded accordion style. Maybe a REALLY long strip, glued from pieces.

I have an old reproduction of the Bayeux Tapestry like this. Makes a neat image when you stretch it out (I've had it wrapped around two walls in some places I've lived), and it would mean users could see the route whole, or as not divided at any particular place. That's the one thing that's always bugged me about route books, the arbitrary division into sections.

Probably not practical (added manual bindery costs could add up), but it would sure add to the the cool factor....

Coastal Cruise Guides do maps like this for the Inside Passage and other cruise markets. 6-foot long maps are pretty cool...

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#11
Bethan Davies

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Thanks for the advice, Hans. I'd love to see some photos if you get the chance.

One of my clients finished a book like that recently (nautical map for a river in Holland), I can post some photos of that when I'm back home (next week), if you like.


Bethan
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www.pilipalapress.com

#12
MapMedia

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Top to bottom, bottom to top, I think either way you go, people will conform to it.
My frustration with indexes is usually due to wanting to see the big picture with detail, not a single slice at a time.

Also, Bethan, its important to know your target user for these pilgrimage tours, maybe this is the over 50 crowd (?), so a map/guide that is not too hard to manage and possibly looks/feels like the other maps in their backpack (i.e. lonely planet guide book of Spain?). Usually the best design is simple, smart, and considerate (i.e. user friendly!).

#13
Bethan Davies

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Thanks to everyone for their great comments.

Users are mostly over-50s and non-walkers. Likely non-map users, apart from road atlases? Which is why we're leaning towards a book, and a familiar looking one. Much as I love the idea of a long accordion-folded map. Maybe that's a different project, more like a souvenir map rather than a practical one.


Bethan
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www.pilipalapress.com

#14
Maisie

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What kinds of things have been done for, say, hiking trails?
The National Park Service has a six-foot map of the Appalachaian Trail. I have also seen fold-out maps bound into books. Has anybody seen any other approaches?

Maybe a Through-hiker would be the best person to ask...

#15
Hans van der Maarel

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Here's some photos of the maps I mentioned before:
1
2
3
4

About 2 Mb each. I'm having some trouble getting the attachments to work...
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
Red Geographics
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