Some ways to visualize Challenger Deep’s deepness

I recently made a StoryMap that illustrates the deepness of Challenger Deep using some comparisons. Like taking a walk through Manhattan. Or skydiving. Or free-diving. There are also the obligatory Everest, Grand Canyon and Burj Khalifa units in there, too. As one does. Also, to keep it somewhat sciency, I have this introduction thing to … Continue reading Some ways to visualize Challenger Deep’s deepness

Pirates and Time Travel

The ability to slide on the data visualization goggles to filter, pivot, animate, and otherwise magically parse a phenomenon is a real wonder. This StoryMap walks through the visual analysis of 30 years of nautical piracy through various cross-sections of the calendar. While I am not a marine security expert or global economist/sociologist/explorer, I do … Continue reading Pirates and Time Travel

Pen and Ink

Everybody just loves a pen and ink stipple effect. It’s charming, it’s warm, it’s handsome, it’s tactile. It says, say, want to sit on the couch and I’ll read to you from your well-worn copy of Where the Sidewalk Ends? I’ve tried out the stipple effect in maps (here and here) that I’ve hand-drawn (yes, and so should … Continue reading Pen and Ink


Here is a set of maps made to look like cross-stitched samplers. You can use the style, too, if you’d like. Or read about its making here. Here is a real cross-stitch I made when I was a kid. Happy Stitching! John Also, here is that hoop stretcher graphic, if you want to lay it … Continue reading Sampler

Ambient-ish Hillshade

Here’s a way to hack an ambient hillshade effect in ArcGIS Pro using traditional hillshade and slope applied to blurred DEMs. Here’s the result: Here is this technique applied to Northern Michigan. Using this an an overlay blend mode (in Adobe) atop imagery gives a pretty attractive result. Continue reading Ambient-ish Hillshade