A map can reveal a rich story of events and physical change on a two dimensional medium.
A story is never limited to written passages on paper. Paintings in a gallery, songs passed down through generations and films praised as classics all embody unique narrative angles brought on through technology. As a designer and self proclaimed storyteller, I look for unique angles on how to tell stories through unconventional methods. Lot’s of my work provokes exploration through design and animation but I find unique potential in data visualization as a storytelling medium. Project Horizon represents a focus on the data visualization of Cartography and more specifically, modern technological interpretations of maps and recorded data layers.
Horizon is a design exploration project that explores what a story is when it’s told through the medium of cartography. A map can reveal so much more than a snapshot of a given location or directions to the next destination. Buried within this information is the historical context of how this information took shape. A map can reveal a rich story of events and physical change on a two dimensional medium. The contour elevation lines of mountains and meandering paths of rivers tell their story of erosion and human intervention. A lot can be extracted from a map and this project is all expressing a story through the medium of maps.
Just take a look at an elevation map of this scarred land and our first impression might extrapolate something must have carved these gashes out of the ground. We start to create a story in our minds as we imagine what might have caused this. Geologists do this for a living. I just like imagining what other stories could be expressed through these incredibly detailed illustrations.
The first set of designs use site plan diagrams as an inspiration for design and layout. My fascination of site plans revolves around their use of layers to highlight areas of interest and value. They contain so much information for architecture and construction that I found using the same layers for narratives gave me just as much depth.
In these explorations, a few stories play out on the static canvas. One of the prints visually details the last ¼ of a well known science fiction film. The point here is to explore the narrative structure as it can be expressed on a static medium designed to convey information. A seamless merger of aesthetics with data narratives. This is and will remain an ongoing project in my never ending explorations.
Composed within many layers of telemetric data lies an evolving story told through designed cartography.
Often, in search of a design method or creative direction, I find myself off meandering in graphic design territory simply to create fun and interesting projects. horizon started out as a simple exploration for another project but quickly spiraled out of control to a point which I needed to develop it into it's own study. I was fascinated with the contour lines and began juxtaposing glitch design elements to compliment.
Rather than push this aesthetic into a typical UI construct, I chose to focus on it more as a print piece where the monochromatic pallet and texture of the line-work could blend into an interesting textural layout. Nothing fancy here except cool looking compositions and a deeper study with the medium. I enjoyed the processes so much, I decided to put it on the website. Fancy that!