Rethinking the Ubiquitous Map

Over the past week I've been using the USDA's amazing Cropscape Tool (here!) to pull some very dense and interesting geospatial data about the American landscape. The project is a continuation of the work I began a couple of years ago at Archework's Chicago Expander Workshops, where I was a research fellow.

The data provided by the USDA is incredible and includes a tremendous wealth of information that makes up the composition of America (over multiple years!). By pulling this data and extrapolating specific categories I've been able to produce a number of unique and explicit maps that aim to push us away from the ubiquitous and low-resolution (regarding information content) physical and political map.

Here are a few examples of recently produced maps. I'm hoping to do some very large screenprints of these in the coming week to really explore complex data and storytelling through a very minimal and simple visual medium.


Urbanisation in America (2014 Data by USDA)

Water in America (excluding the Great Lakes) (2014 Data by USDA)

Shrubland in America (2014 Data by USDA)

  Grassland in America (2014 Data by USDA)

Grassland in America (2014 Data by USDA)

Coniferous Forests in America (2014 Data by USDA)

Cornfields in America (2014 Data by USDA)