Here is a map of the area around Indonesia. It sports a pretty dramatic vignette, a sculpted terrain, rippley water lines, a paper texture, and that crazy glassy overview map.
For your carto-adventure edification, I’ve made a two-part video series showing how to make it. I’ll also list the steps beneath each video if you wisely decide you can’t abide my nasally Midwestern narration.
0:00 Intro. Set the hook…
0:13 Grabbing a big ocean polygon from Natural Earth.
1:38 Pulling in the glorious World Imagery basemap (coordinated by well-rounded, passionate, results-driven, Living Atlas colleague Robert Waterman; hero of basemaps).
2:05 Pulling in regular, and dark, hillshade (coordinated by masterful terrain-slinging Living Atlas colleague, Rajinder Nagi; champion of elevation).
2:40 Using blend modes to digitally stitch the hillshade texture to the imagery colors for a terrain that looks carved out of play-doh.
4:05 Ditching Web Mercator in favor of the charmingly-orthographic World from Space projection…and changing its center to Indonesia.
5:33 Creating a new layout to fit a typical 1920 x 1080 monitor.
6:02 Big margin and neatline. Just kidding, we’ll take this map right to the edge. And crush the neatline into oblivion.
6:59 How to work with that basemap credits text. You aren’t stuck with it as-is! Endlessly grateful to Heather Smith for teaching me this.
7:47 Oh goodness, here we go with the gradient! Ah a nice circular smooth gradient to inject some vignette loveliness into our map.
9:38 Adding in a complete hack sandy coast bevel effect.
12:03 Using buffers to create coastally-radiating water lines? No way! Just use symbol layers so it dynamically draws well at all scales!
15:44 Bring in some papery texture. Give this map a bit of tactile realism. Here’s where you can download the paper texture image I used. Then blend it into the map.
0:00 Re-cap. You don’t need to trouble yourself with this.
0:15 LAND! We’ll grab some moderate-precision polygons from the generous and handy Natural Earth.
0:36 Inserting a new map into the Pro project, and adding the land layer.
0:54 Applying the Indonesia-specific version of the World from Space projection.
1:12 Adding this simple overview map into the layout.
1:27 Dissolving all the land polygons into a single mega multi-part polygon using the Dissolve tool. If you assign no dissolve field, it just dissolves everything. 🙂
2:45 Giving this global land polygon a smooth circular gradient. White in the middle and transparent white at the edge.
3:40 Ah, the extent indicator! A handy little rectangle that dynamically knows where to draw a view extent on your overview map. Check it.
3:49 An extent indicator is just another polygon so we can style it up with all the glassy/shadowy tricks we have up our sleeves.
5:19 Smiting that default map frame outline.
6:10 Don’t forget to add/style the data credits! And always sign your work.
Well thank you friends for coming along on this fantastic map voyage! If you use some, or all, of these tricks in a map you’re working on believe me when I tell you I would love to see it. Feel free to share a link in the comments or email or socials or whatever!
5 thoughts on “How to Make this Map of Indonesia”
I went through both “Indonesia” tutorials. They are splendid. They worked perfectly…well, almost perfectly. I used your technique to create a visualization of the Great Lakes. It came out well EXCEPT for the texturing segment. I used a photo of lightly tinted pastel paper (heavy construction paper with a pronounced tooth). When I used it as a fill for the lakes layer, it showed up with a tiled effect–small squares with a gradient from one side to the other. I increased the point scale from your recommendation of 256 to 800 or 900, it did solve most of the tiling problem, but there is still a slight tile-effect in the lake layer fill after blending. The other issue is that by increasing the fill points, the image expands and the ripples are magnified and it thereby loses some (but by no means all) of the “wavy” effect.
I would send you a jpg of the map layout, but I am not sure how to do it.
the Great Lakes! great idea.
yes, creating a nice repeating texture is quite difficult. i’ve done lots of them and it’s always a challenge. to make it easier for folks, i’ve made some other paper textures that are available here: https://livingatlas.arcgis.com/en/browse/?q=paper%20texture#d=2&q=paper%20texture
I made the Great Lakes…it looks pretty good except for the faint unblended line that runs through Lakes Michigan and Superior. I could send it if you would like to see it. Thanks for the texture.
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maybe if you run a dissolve on the lakes? is it a weird rendering artifact or are they different polygons?
Yup, I did a dissolve before used the gradient fill on lake layer otherwise the lake polygons in the original shapefile would have had lots of centers (actually, I tried the gradient fill BEFORE I did the gradient fill and had lots of centers…of the various polygons…not a great look). My center now is somewhere southeast of Saginaw so the “reflection” falls largely in Lake Huron but there is “spillage” through Lake Saint Clair and Lake Michigan…with just a tad spilling into Lakes Erie and Superior. The gradient effect is really good, it’s just the blend is not totally seamless…there is a faint gradation difference in Lake Superior and Lake Michigan because of the paper layer artifacts. One touch up that I used to make the visualization pop out was to apply a second offset on the 10m river centerline shapefile. It’s just a little sand-colored nudge of about .3 point that gives a little 3D effect similar to the “shoreline” offset that you used on the Indonesia map. I am using the exported Great Lakes layout jpg as a basemap for a course lecture. (On the “Beaver Wars” of the mid-seventeenth century.) I haven’t tried the paper raster files that you put up though, but I will see if they work. I am always open to tips…like ones that might answer “how do you put in arrows or otherwise symbolize in Arc Pro the movement of peoples or armies on a static map.”