Custom Maps and Cartography

A map can say a lot. It’s like a picture – worth at least a thousand words.

Cartographer is the technical name for a map-maker, and at Flat Earth Mapping we love to make maps. Some say cartography is part science and part art. Certainly a cartographer should be creative and inventive as there may be numerous possible ways to display the geographic data that underpins a good map.

A custom made map designed by an expert cartographer shows everything you want and nothing you don’t, so your picture will be a masterpiece with no unnecessary detail distracting the user, cluttering your map and making it difficult to read.

No matter how large or small, Flat Earth Mapping can design and create a map for almost any purpose. A custom made map is one that exactly suits your needs, so you and your customers do not have to settle for an ‘off the shelf’ option. Our Australian Cartography team can work with your data, or we can source some for you. Most geographic data formats are supported as we work with a variety of software.

Digital Cartography

Digital cartography, or digital mapping, is the process of collecting, compiling, manipulating and formatting digital geographic data into a virtual image. Geographic (or spatial) data refers to any data about the Earth or parts of the Earth. The process may utilise Geographic Information System (GIS) and other specialised software to produce custom maps that portray an accurate and attractive looking virtual image of part of the Earth’s surface. Digital maps may be printed as hard copies, viewed on the internet, or in a variety of software and apps by the map user.

Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

A Geographic Information System (or GIS), is a software and database combination that can store, update, manage and display a wide variety of information about geographic locations in the form of points, lines and polygons (areas). For example, one such location might be a small town. The town centre can be defined as a set of latitude and longitude coordinates so its location on the Earth is precisely known.

The GIS database can hold information in various fields of a table to describe attributes about the town, such as its name and population, its area in hectares or which shire council, state or country it is located in. These fields can then be used to sort and display the data in different ways, and once combined with other geographic features, any number of maps with different themes and styles can be created – hence the “custom made map”. The possibilities are endless.

Below are some examples of custom maps and digital cartography we have produced or worked on in the past. For a free quote or advice on your proposed mapping project, please see the Contact page.

Town maps
Kiama, NSW from Complete Road Guide of Australia published by Reader’s Digest.
Town Map
City maps
Perth City, Western Australia from Travel Australia published by Reader’s Digest.
Atlas Maps
A portion of a physical map from Earth Blue published by Millennium House.
Road Maps
1:250,000 detailed road map of the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia. One of 90 double-page road maps from Travel Australia published by Reader’s Digest.
Travel Guide Maps
South Coast of Western Australia near Esperance from Making the Most of Your Journey published by Reader’s Digest.
4WD and Adventurer Maps
A portion of The Kimberley map. Just one of a large series of Outback 4WD maps published by Westprint Maps in paper and digital versions.
Oil and Gas Exploration           Coal Seam Gas Tenements in NSW. Produced for Australian energy industry consulting firm EnergyQuest.Oil and Gas Maps Illustrated Souvenir Maps
A portion of the illustrated Outback Central and South Australia map, jointly published by Flat Earth Mapping and Westprint Maps.Illustrated Souvenir Maps
Historical and Reference Maps
The Fertile Crescent is one of many maps used to illustrate the World’s most significant cultural sites in Archaeologica published by Global Book Publishing.

By John Frith

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