March 28, 2016

My first map using a DEM

This week the theme was to make a map of the places where a helicopter can land in order to install a "bear box".  Obviously this is the first map in which we utilize DEM's, to display elevation.

Helicopter land spots, seki
Helicopter Landing Spots, SEKI 

So looking at my finished results, the first thing I love about it is the colors. It's hard to come up with a color pallet that both looks good and is viewable due to my colorblindness. But each of those 5 colors fit the bill.

I am new to mapping terrains and I have to say they are really interesting.  What you see here is actually a hillshade of the DEM with 50% transparency.

Placing the bear boxes was easy, pretty stragiht forward.  We did so by selecting 11 pre-determined locations from the entire campgrounds feature set.

Like last map, what I find myself doing is colorizing the map with however method fits the theme of the map. Then using the eye dropper tool to just randomly select 3 distinctly different colors and saving them in the color pallet.  Then I use those 3 colors for all of the jazz around the map (fonts, north arrow, scale bar, title).  I think this really makes the map feel more professional.

Every week I seem to struggle with how to approach the key, this week was no different.  I only had 1 feature class for the key, and a bunch of elevation values to display.  ArcMap doesn't allow you to have the name on the top and the label (picture) below it. They force you to fit a certain kind of mold for their legend maker.  Looking at it now, not very satisfied with the format. It appears as if elevation is a subset of Bear Boxes, whcih it is not, it's entirely it's own thing.  Elevation should have stayed small, but I should of given that whole group a name, such as Hills.

The title is too squooshed together, not enough white space.  That's the thing that sticks out to me the most. We were told to add a table to the map this week too, so I placed mine in the corner as such.

Can't wait for more DEM's!