24 February 2007

Amateurish cartography

When it comes to cartography, I am an amateur. (Come to think of it, I am an amateur when it comes to a lot of other things.) I do like the subject of making and understanding maps, though. And I have a few old cartography books. One of them is Erwin Raisz's General Cartography from 1948 that I bought at a used book sale for 2 bucks some time ago.


Lacking many of the sophisticated specialized devices of cartography, such as the one for drawing guidelines Raisz mentions, I invariably resort to Photoshop when I need a map for a manuscript or a presentation.


For an upcoming presentation, I need a map of Turkey with a grid of latitudes and longitudes. There are many such maps that I can simply scan and use, but for my purposes, the background map needs to be blank and the grid needs to be on a separate layer. To create a map like that-in my amateur way—it is necessary to scan a suitable map and then retrace the outlines of Turkey as well as the latitudes and longitudes on separate layers in Photoshop. That is exactly what I did last nite, spending several hours for one map. But when I did a test print, I realized that 2 of the longitudes, the 36th and the 42nd (red arrows), were misplaced. There really was no easy way to correct the map, because the problem was with the way I had to scan the base map, which was bound in a book and could not be scanned flat.


Later tonite I am going back to the drawing table to burn more midnite oil.


No comments: