With Barely Maps, Peter Gorman has reduced maps to their most minimalist, and their most cryptic: a grid of abstract shapes that represent the geometries of states, neighbourhoods, subway stops or intersections. Gorman started desigining them a few years ago as a side-gig, he writes. “Then, last year, my print ‘Intersections of Seattle’ went viral, and I decided to make the map-based art prints a full-time thing. Now, as I get close to 100 original maps, my next project is to compile a book of my designs, along with the stories that inspired them.” The maps are available for sale on Etsy; the book, he hopes, will be available by the end of 2019. [Kottke]
The latest map to go viral is Robert Szucs’s dramatic and colourful map of the U.S. river basins. It’s even more spectacular in high resolution. Made with QGIS, the map separates river basin by colour and assigns stream thickness by Strahler number. I do have a couple of quibbles. The map doesn’t distinguish between the Hudson Bay and Atlantic watersheds: the Great Lakes and Red River basins are coloured the same way. And speaking of the Great Lakes, I have no idea why they look like ferns here. The map is available for sale on Etsy, along with similar maps of other countries, continents and regions. Daily Mail coverage.
I’ve written before about maps of the real world done in the style of fantasy maps; they’re a key piece of evidence for my argument that fantasy maps have a distinct (and limited) style. Enough of these fantasy maps of reality are being done that it’s clearly a thing now. The latest examples I’ve encountered come from an Etsy store called Parnasium. Run by a Polish designer named Karol S., it sells poster-sized maps of Europe, the United States, the British Isles, France, Italy, Japan and Poland (so far) in the style of fantasy maps. (The fact he’s using Uncial script suggests he’s primarily inspired by the Lord of the Rings movies; Uncial is fairly rare in book maps.) [Maptitude]
The latest map of the real world done in the style of fantasy maps (remember: fantasy maps have a distinct style), at least that I’ve encountered, is this map of North America offered by Etsy seller Aoraki Maps. (They also have one of the southeastern U.S.) The style is very fantasy map, with cursive labels rather than the (older) Didone-style lettering. [Boing Boing]