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Greeley Watershed (Revelstoke, BC) Map

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#1
rgjohnson

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Hi Everyone,

This is my first post of my first “professional” (i.e. not school related) map that I’ve done. I’d welcome any and all feedback.

My sister is a teacher and has a contract to go to every elementary school classroom in Revelstoke this school year and give a presentation on the environmental impacts of water usage. One aspect of that is an understanding of where the City of Revelstoke gets it’s water from - which is the Greeley watershed highlighted on this map.

So, the target audience is elementary school kids. The map will be printed as a poster (exact size tbd) that she will refer to during the presentation. She also has a 3D model of roughly the same area.

The map is produced entirely in ArcMap 9.3. DEM data was downloaded from GeoBase. All other vector data was downloaded from GeoBC.

A couple of my notes:
  • I’m not 100% sure on the colour ramp used. I created a custom one in ArcMap, but the middle elevations seem to “glow” a bit. I’m going to wait to see what it looks like printed though before I make any changes.
  • I’m also not sure about the label sizes and whether they will be big enough to be readable from the back of a classroom. Again, I’m going to evaluate those after doing a test print.
  • I would have normally focused tighter in on the watershed and Revelstoke, but kept it further out for a couple of reasons. It better matches the physical model she is using as well as the fact that Mt Begbie and Mt. MacPherson to the west are prominent landmarks that the kids will be familiar with.
  • I’m not sure I’m entirely happy with the labeling of Lake Revelstoke and the Columbia River, but I’m not sure how else to go about it. Any suggestions?
Thanks for looking.

Cheers,
Ryan

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#2
Gretchen Peterson

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What a neat project. It would be great to know that elementary school kids from a lot of schools are going to see your map and use it to learn. The thing I noticed right off was that the watershed is illustrated a bit strangely. Unless I'm reading the map wrong it appears that you've changed the shading for that one area. I would personally just use a black outline around the watershed, quite thick, and keep the regular hypsometric tinting that you used in the rest of the map. The labels might need to stand out more. Maybe with shadows or halos. The rest looks good to me.

#3
Laura Miles

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I think it's really appealing, but I agree with Gretchen that the Watershed's symbology needs something else. I had trouble picking it out at first, and a green shade is typically used for parks. Also, it seems that perhaps your hillshade has too much contrast? Maybe that is what's causing the glowing effect at the mid ranges, and it looks very dark in the valleys. I would also re-label the Columbia River and Frisby Ridge with the text along the features (as you did with the other river). Right now it's not entirely clear whether the Columbia River is the water feature to the left or the one between the two lakes to the right. I would also put all the mountain names on two lines, just to compact them so they're not stretching across so much but I think that's just personal preference.
Nice map!
Laura

#4
MapMedia

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Looks nice! I would want to see more detail in the target watershed: can you show major tributaries?
Also, instead of the green overlay, how about a simple border so the viewer can still make out the relief within the watershed?

Chris

#5
David Medeiros

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That is a fun project. I'd love to be able to make maps for this type of thing, simple compact message, easy and fun to illustrate.

I agree with most of the comments above. There seems to be a glowing effect in the shaded relief and tints that's a little distracting. For a basic map like this, for school children, it might be better to go for a single tint hill shading instead (eg, med green to light green) and tone down the contrast by raising the sun angle on your relief. Darker streams and lake boundaries but slightly lighter lake fill will make the water features pop more. The Revelstoke lake label should be either in or out of the lake fill and if you can try to get your Columbia river type to follow the path like you did for the other river. You could thicken and darken the road lines as well.

For the watershed highlight I actually prefer your approach in general, using a transparent fill for the polygon. What I might do is take the polygon you have and use a different fill color, maybe even alight gray, just to modify the under color of the relief. Add to that a medium gray boundary or even a white knock-out boundary.

Your type is on the right path, you're making good use of type style to help symbolize your features but it needs a little work. Increased letter spacing is usually used for major geographic feature (like a big dessert or mountain chain). I'd reduce the letter spacing on your water type and reduce their size while making the color darker. I'd make the mountain labels smaller and all caps.

A lot of this is stylistic opinion so take with a grain of salt. Over all, nice work.

dave

GIS Reference and Instruction Specialist, Stanford Geospatial Center.

 

www.mapbliss.com

 


#6
Charles Syrett

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Greetings from Nelson BC, just a few hours south of "Revy"!

The general approach to graphic presentation for a map such as this (including maps for TV, slideshows, etc) is rather different from what you would do on a detailed map for publication. You need to be large, bold, and simple. Be wary of the impulse to be painterly or arty! If you keep the viewer in mind, you'll have a very attractive and outstanding product, despite breaking a few of the usual cartographic conventions.

The extent to which you take this other approach depends on what is being communicated on the map, who the audience is, how large the room is (or what the expected viewing distance is) and how long the map will be displayed. For example, if the map will only be displayed for 10 seconds, and the viewing distance is quite large, then never mind naming features along a path -- just keep text horizontal and even arrowed-in.

You've made a good start on this. A few things:
1. Careful with the serif text. The blue names in serif italic will almost surely be lost on at least some viewers.
2. I agree with others who have suggested that the watershed be simply (and even boldly) outlined.
3. Is there a reason for elevation tints? Is it pertinent to what's being communicated? If not, a single colour shading will do nicely, as David suggests.
4. I would definitely indicate the Revelstoke urban area with a flat tint. Viewers need to see the city, the treatment plant, and the watershed, very clearly -- the rest of it is backdrop.
5. It's still in lat-long projection, so the scale bar only works in one direction. Any particular reason you haven't projected this?

Looking forward to the next edition! B)

Charles Syrett
Map Graphics
http://www.mapgraphics.com

#7
rgjohnson

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Thank you everyone for the suggestions. I'm working through them now and will post the results.

Cheers,
Ryan

#8
rgjohnson

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Hi Everyone,

I realized I never posted the final version of this map. Here it is. Thank you again to everyone who provided feedback - It made a huge difference in the quality of the final map. I ended up printing it as a 35x22 poster and am very happy with the results as was the "client".

Cheers,
Ryan

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#9
SaultDon

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Good job, the local projection makes it more pleasing to the eye, the water lines seem a little washed out, maybe not enough contrast.

Is your client in the States? Kilometre <> Kilometer

#10
Laura Miles

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Nice revision! Doesn't look nearly so glow-y.
Laura

#11
rgjohnson

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Good job, the local projection makes it more pleasing to the eye, the water lines seem a little washed out, maybe not enough contrast.

Is your client in the States? Kilometre <> Kilometer


Oops! I've been living in the US and UK and now recently back in Canada, and am constantly confused as to which spelling is correct in which country. I should have noticed that though - thanks!

Ryan




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