John Frith is the cartographer (map maker) behind Flat Earth Mapping. Based in Adelaide, South Australia and serving clients all over the country, John brings a wide range of expertise to any mapping related task. With almost 30 years experience in cartography, map design and using geographic data to illustrate many different themes, John is enthusiastic about working with clients to create just the right map for each project.
He began his interest in maps while still in high school studying history, geography and geology, then gained an Associate Diploma in Cartography at the South Australian Institute of Technology (now University of South Australia).
While attending university but keen to get some practical mapping experience, John joined the Royal Australian Survey Corps (Australian Army Reserve) in 1984 and enjoyed the role of military map-maker until 1996 when the Survey Corps was closed down by the Army.
Working on maps of military training areas, defence installations and rapid response mapping during military exercises was very rewarding. A bonus was the travel and field work associated with checking map detail both on the ground and from the air in some very remote locations.
Soon after joining the Army, John also started working part time for Carto Graphics, a private mapping and drafting firm in Adelaide established by Brian Zander. Brian was an inspiration and helped instil in John a love of maps and a pride in his work that is still evident today. Carto Graphics worked on mapping for the Army, drafting maps and plans for a large gold exploration company and also created tourist and 4WD maps.
In 1997, after 13 years with Carto Graphics (6 years as Technical Manager), John left to take a freelance position for 12 months producing a large number of road maps of Australia for a series of four guide books. He then established Flat Earth Mapping in July of 1998.
John’s expert skills and creativity have been utilised by a wide range of clients all over Australia (and the World) on a large number of different mapping and geographic data projects, each one offering its own unique challenges and peculiarities.
“Without the help of Flat Earth Mapping, our Earth atlas series would not be as good as it is. In fact Earth may not have happened at all. Your help has provided an Australian emphasis to Earth that does not exist in any other world atlas”.
Gordon Cheers, Publisher and Managing Director
“John has a great feel for what Westprint wishes to convey with our maps. His work is always accurate and of a high standard, while remaining communicative at all stages of map development, from initial concept to finished product”.
Graeme Ussing, Owner
“John is a skilled and experienced cartographer who uses the latest cartographic methods but brings with him the basics of good cartography derived from manual cartographic methods. My experience has shown this combination delivers the best results”.
Peter Davis, Managing Director
World Mapman Solutions
“John is a valuable member of our freelance team and has worked as a cartographer for us on many successful projects. He is an extremely technically skilled cartographer, and has an excellent attention to detail. He can take a project from the brief to a finished product of a very high standard. John is also creative, easy to work with and has excellent time management skills.
John produces all the maps for our Australian map books – most recently published as Travel Australia. He has also designed and produced attractive maps for Australia’s Most Scenic Drives, Making The Most of your Journey and Australia’s Most Amazing Places. All these titles were very successful. We have also used his skills to design beautiful maps for our New Zealand products such as the Illustrated Guide to New Zealand. We also employ John on an ongoing basis to keep our map database up-to-date. He consistently achieves good results and delivers on all expectations”.
Carole Orbell, (former) Art Director
Reader’s Digest Australia, General Books
John Frith and Flat Earth Mapping are long standing members of the International Map Industry Association (IMIA), Asia Pacific Region. Members of the IMIA meet regularly to hear about new developments in mapping, technology, spatial data, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and the publishing and distribution of maps, both paper and digital.