Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Craftsmanship

 



Greetings fellow Cartographers!  It is that point in the semester best referred to as the doldrums.  That’s right time couldn’t move any slower, so we’re stuck just doing enough to get by because everything else (life) has been piling up.  Well my friends, I come to you with something to fill your sails with…Craftsmanship.  And no we are not carving a fine woodwind instrument, or creating an eight foot tall toothpick sculpture, we are making maps!

Like it or not GIS is becoming more and more integrated into multiple degree programs, used across a multitude of disciplines.  All this increasing use only means one thing for us: competition.  Easy!  Don’t role up those shirt sleeves so fast; the best thing you can do is hone your craft.  Once you have carefully fulfilled all the necessary weekly criteria, take a backseat look at your creation and ask yourself “What makes mine unique?”, “Is everything tidy and aesthetically pleasing?”, “Am I subtly enhancing my map’s content so that it is pleasing to the eyes, yet communicates information effectively?  If you can answer  these questions, then you’re probably in good shape, but if you are a little uneasy fret not!  You can review your use of alignment tools, color choices, and better yet employ additional design concepts.  Remember that Cartography serves as the bridge for information from researchers to consumers, just as a picture is worth a thousand words, maps are priceless!

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