Principles of map design

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Principles of Map Design
- Purpose. It should be really clear
- Reality
- Available Data. Raster, vector… Resolution is better in vector.
- Map scale.
- Audience. The way you are classifyingyour data will affect the understanding of a map
- Conditions of use. Color, grey scale…
- Technical Limits

Miscommunication through symbology
Remember: Maps are single realizations of a spatialprocess
User interpretation: Overly complicated classification schemes

Map composition
- Map Body:
a. Geographical reference - Base Information
b. Context - Floating or Cropped (USData,DCGIS)
c. Positioning - Right, left centered
d. Zoom – Give the study are room to breath
- Inset/Overview Map
When would you use a Inset map
To show a primary map area in relation to a larger morerecognizable area.
To enlarge imported or congested areas
To show alternate thematic topics that are related to the maps theme, or different dates of the same theme.
- Tittle
• All maps need atitle
• Short, snappy- but not overly abbreviated
• Do not use the word Map in title
• Use subtitles for complicated themes
• Use a bounding box if the background is busy
• Should be largest text onthe map
• Try to limit to one line

• Avoid decorative fonts
• Consistency in font type (vary size, not style)
• Legibility
• Pronounced labels for more important features
• Do not passivelyaccept the default label settings
• Spell-check
• No more than 2 different fonts
- Legend
• Thematic maps need legend
• Not all symbols need to feature in the legend, only those central to themain theme
• Symbol sizing should be consistent
• Make sure legend is aligned properly
• Legend should have balance
• Should be legible, not too small or too large

- Scale

- Direction Indicator- Map Metadata

Labeling Guidelines
- Avoid Overprinting use:
• Halo
• Mask
• Callout
- Add labels hierarchically
- Use preferred placement for point features
- Do not separate feature...
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