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Boy Scout Map - SE Michigan

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#1
mrjinjkx

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Hello,

This is my first posting on the forum and I was looking for a little constructive criticism on a mapping project I am doing in my spare time.

This is for a local Boy Scout council here in southeast Michigan. The map you see will eventually be posted on the council’s website. The intended audience will be for campers both Scout and non-Scout who may be using or interested in Camp Munhacke.

Here is a little background on the map. It was created exclusively with ArcGIS v9.2. I don’t have access to Adobe or any other graphics oriented platform. When commenting please consider that as a potential limiting factor for modifying any graphics. The size is set at 8.5 x 11 allowing the average user the ability to print. The locations are based on the existing map, however it is outdated and very hard to read.

What I am looking for is opinions on the look and feel as well as any confusion that may need to be clarified.

Thank you in advanced for reviewing.

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#2
Hans van der Maarel

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Well, one thing you'll want to do is check the font usage. Instead of symbols I'm seeing is letters in different colors, because I don't have the required fonts installed and they're not in the PDF either.
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#3
loximuthal

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I must have the right font installed, because I see all the symbologies as symbols and not letters. Most of the point symbols are clear and generally intuitive, so even map novices should understand them fairly well. The other thing that struck me first was the green mottling. I'm guessing this represents trees/open areas? If it truly represents locations of then it may be useful, but I would try to screen it back some (transparency on the display tab of layer properties). Related to that, the roads and trails are hard to see over that background. If you can make then stronger/darker then users can more easily see how to get from point A to point B. Some of your point symbols also have a hard time standing out against the background: the chapel (does it really need the label?), the camp master building and the pond in the south west corner especially. I'm also wondering if you need every camp fire and loading zone marked. The camp boundary looks good, but I notice the waterfront is not included inside the camp boundary. Is it really outside the camp property? The address and title bar (along the side and bottom) are quite effective. This may be a personal quirk, but I would put a line, even a light line like that around the map, around the legend tying it to the map. My last comment is that I think the mile scale bar is probably overkill. Not many people have a sense of what 0.025 of a mile is. If you want a scalebar with mile units, you might try going to 2/10ths and just show "0 0.1 0.2" though that might get too long.
Andy McIntire
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#4
DaveB

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A lot of the text is very small. Hard for me to read, but maybe okay for sharp-eyed young scouts! :lol:
I'm seeing the symbols just fine. But you should check it on a machine without any of the fonts that might be used in the map. You may need to turn on font embedding when you create the pdf.

The green mottling is a bit strong. I agree about toning it back so it recedes a bit in the visual hierarchy.
The fire markers may be important. If so, I think it's fine to leave them all in.

I'm all for coastal vignettes, but having the white at the shoreline, meeting up with light colored shoreline features like the dock, ends up making it hard to pick out those features. To me part of the point of a coastal vignette (beyond just looking cool) is to increase the contrast between the land and water making it easier to see features.
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#5
Soocom1

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I too had a bit of a time with the fonts.
I would avoid a Serif font (times New Roman) all together in most labeling, except for special areas, and/or water.

I would instead use a Helvectia or Aerial font instead. Or a some other block style sans-serif font. A stronger representation on the trails is a good point, bot otherwise I live most of the layout. If it is a heavily wooded area, a slightly darker hue on the tree line is good, vs, grassy-open areas.

For the most part, its simple and well laid out for the average person who will access it.
Architects design things,
Engineers build things,
and Cartographers tell them where to go.

#6
Dennis McClendon

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Check the spelling of Sauk and Comanche. It's always embarrassing to misspell the name of your client.
Dennis McClendon, Chicago CartoGraphics
chicagocarto.com

#7
mrjinjkx

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Thank you all for taking the time to critique. I will be updating based on the comments over the next couple of days and will post a new version when complete.

#8
Gretchen Peterson

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Definitely tone down the green stuff while darkening the roads and the trails. Label the roads. Make the trail dark enough so that it has the most visual impact when compared to the site symbols. The locator map shows the camp as being in a non waterfront location but the main map shows water. I guess that is because you don't have the lake data on the locator map. You might want to put it on the locator map - or at least that one lake.

Other than those items I think it is a nice map. The bars on the left and bottom are cool. I didn't have any trouble seeing the symbols.

#9
mrjinjkx

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Thank you everyone for the pointers. I will be working on the map over the next couple of days and will post an updated version when complete.

#10
Rob

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if the tent symbol is really showing a campsite, i'd reflect that in the legend.

#11
razornole

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Does the 'main road' on the west side really travel for about a mile and then just end in the middle of a forest? If it does just end there I would guess that it would be a service road for some type of utility.

Check your icons on the legend, they are not justified. Some of your icons overlap on the map as well (Erie, Menominee, etc..). Seems like they could be moved just a tad and still be every bit as effective.

Looks like your small 'lake' (I have trouble referring to a waterbody <200' as a lake) is a cypress pond. Is it really a forested waterbody?

First Aid is very difficult to read. At a children's camp I think that knowing where to find find first aid is very important and would render it so on the map. You could use a leader like you did with the showers. Which, by the way, is the first thing that I noticed on this map. Made me smile, I always want to know where to shower.

hope this helps,
kru
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Strabo 22AD

#12
jrat

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I agree with most of the comments made so far. I like the overall layout, color choices, and symbols. I agree it needs a neat line around the whole thing to tie it together. I find that the service roads are a little hard to see. I like the use of the transparency for the color of the line but it also does not allow it to stand out enough. I would add the layer again just under the original layer symbolized white and no transparency. (there might be a better way but I have found it useful within the constraints of ArcMap) Some of your other areas like the chapel could benefit from the same treatment. I agree that the coastline is cool but it hides your waterfront features. Overall I have more things I like about it than comments. Well done.

#13
kent

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I understand this is a late post, but I'm just getting into this forum, and would like to make some suggestions. If anyone thinks my suggestions are no-good I would really like to hear this, as I am definitely a junior in the cartography arena.

My suggentions: (some of which have already been voiced in above)

The inset looks like an island in the lake.

I don’t like the transparent roads and trails. If you want to make them look light then you can copy and paste those layers, then color the bottom one all white, and leave the top one transparent with your chosen color scheme.

The dock is very light, can hardly see it. Darken the dock, or make the shoreline more prominent or both.

The green forest mottling stuff is far too prominent, especially since you are making most features appear very light.

Chapel doesn’t need a label, but it does need to be more prominent.

Since there are so many fire places perhaps those symbols should be a bit smaller.

Lake and Camp Master building should not be transparent.

Two scale bars not needed.

Border (neatline) needed.

The flag pole and water are exactly the same color, (suggest changing flag pole color).

The legend shows ‘camp buildings’ as orange outline with a light orange fill, I can’t see any orange fill on the actual building representations

If this is to be printed on 8.5”x11” then the serifs on the text may prove to blur the text, you should consider a sans serif font for the small writing. That is totally up to you; however, I would likely not use any serifs at all.

The legend could use some organizing.

You do have basic (very basic) drawing capabilities with ArcGIS; for example, text can be converted to annotations and manipulated from there.

Overall the map has most things where they should be, and it would be a usable tool to navigate the camp.




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