Archive for antarctica

“Back to Skool” Map-Fest: Art and Embroidery

Posted in art & music, maps, maps & mapping with tags , , , , , , , , on September 23, 2011 by Sunshine Superboy

First of all- Huzzah for this, the One-hundred and Fiftieth post!!!

Today’s Back to Skool Map-fest subject is Art!!

Collage and Embroidery:
antarctica collage embroidered antarctica THERE IS A PLACE WHERE IT NEVER GETS HOT- head south until you can’t anymore.

earnest emotional art O_o
watercolor map

Mass produced art! Globes for all!
globe production

Actually interesting:
potato map
A fictional location in Ireland from Marilyn Murphy who says:

“This is somewhat of a self portrait. When my grandparents immigrated to the United States from Ireland, the term ‘murphies’ was slang for potatoes, a common Irish name as well as a staple in the immigrants diet. If I had ancestors who were artists, I like to imagine that perhaps they worked on the creation of Celtic illuminated manuscripts. In this drawing, I laid out an imaginary neighborhood inspired by images in the Book of Durrow. I have also included my home state of Oklahoma in the upper right hand corner.”

Check out more of Marilyn’s work on her website

photo map on back

Fernanda created this image by printing a map of São Paulo onto a photo of someone’s back. The map reads as a tattoo on the body addressing the importance of where people position themselves within their environment.

Totally Awesome!

Pier Gustafson describes his work:

A massive pile of overlapping books. The four open atlases display maps describing the four areas – each in a different way. The charming and exotic town names of North Carolina, the tangled highways of the Twin Cities (the key showing roads under construction, snow emergency routes and the ways to drive to ‘the cabin’). The zoomed in map of Oxford College, the zoomed out map of the Hub of the Universe.

Thanks for sharing, thanks for following, nice to have you back around…

Sunshine Superkid

don’t forget, we’re doing a subject/map a day for a full week!


Bucky, Tattoos, and New Cartographic Directions

Posted in maps, maps & mapping with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 11, 2009 by Sunshine Superboy

My man-crush, Mr.Buckminster Fuller:

The projection used for the world map in question, also known as the “Dymaxion Map,” was created by Buckminster Fuller, distinguished mathematician, inventor and 20th century visionary. The map began as a sketch, “The One-Town World” in 1927. “By 1954, after working on the map for several decades,” Fuller finally had a “satisfactory deck plan of the six and one half sextillion tons Spaceship Earth.”

The Dymaxion Map is the only flat map of the entire surface of the earth that reveals our planet as it really is an island in one ocean without any visible distortion of the relative shapes and sizes of the land areas, and without splitting any continents.

Traditional world maps reinforce the elements that separate humanity and fail to highlight the patterns and relationships emerging from the ever evolving and accelerating process of globalization. Instead of serving as “a precise means for seeing the world from the dynamic, cosmic and comprehensive viewpoint,” the maps we use still cause humanity to “appear inherently disassociated, remote, self-interestedly preoccupied with the political concept of its got to be you or me; there is not enough for both.”

Dude’s work on an innovative projection for representations of the Earth’s landmasses was the inspiration for one of my tattoos. Captain Fuller’s map:


A new technique for unpeeling the Earth’s skin and displaying it on a flat surface provides a fresh perspective on geography, making it possible to create maps that string out the continents for easy comparison, or lump together the world’s oceans into one huge mass of water surrounded by coastlines.

“Myriahedral projection” was developed by Jack van Wijk
, a computer scientist at the Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands.

“The basic idea is surprisingly simple,” says van Wijk. His algorithms divide the globe’s surface into small polygons that are unfolded into a flat map, just as a cube can be unfolded into six squares.

Cartographers have tried this trick before; van Wijk’s innovation is to up the number of polygons from just a few to thousands. He has coined the word “myriahedral” to describe it, a combination of “myriad” with “polyhedron”, the name for polygonal 3D shapes.

Warping reality

The mathematical impossibility of flattening the surface of a sphere has long troubled mapmakers. “Consider peeling an orange and trying to flatten it out,” says van Wijk. “The surface has to distort or crack.”

Some solutions distort the size of the continents while roughly preserving their shape – the familiar Mercator projection, for instance, makes Europe and North America disproportionately large compared with Africa. Others, like the Peters projection, keep landmasses at the correct relative sizes, at the expense of warping their shapes.

An ideal map would combine the best properties of both, but that is only possible by inserting gaps into the Earth’s surface, resulting in a map with confusing interruptions. Van Wijk’s method makes it possible to direct those cuts in a way that minimises such confusion.

Maps of significance

When generating a map he assigns a “weighting” to each edge on the polyhedron to signal its importance, influencing the placement of the cuts or folds. All the maps are equally accurate, but tweaking the weightings gives dramatically different results.

Assigning more significance to landmass gives a map of all the continents in a line, similar to Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion map. Making oceans more important than land produces one giant sea surrounded by the world’s coastlines.

“Now and then you make an unexpected discovery,” says van Wijk. A map that separates land from sea as far as possible, leaving the continents marooned away from a sinuous watery mass, was one such serendipitous result of playing with the algorithm’s parameters.

Projection means prize

“His approach was fresh and innovative,” says Kenneth Field, editor of the British Cartographic Society’s The Cartographic Journal, which recently gave van Wijk the Henry Johns award, which recognises the best mapmaking research paper each year. “He managed to achieve a projection that reduces angular deformation to an absolute minimum and preserves area – not an easy trick,” adds Field, “it was a unanimous decision to give him the prize.”

Van Wijk attributes his success to being somewhat of an outsider. Cartographers typically seek single formulae that can be used to transform the entire globe, he says, while computer scientists look for algorithms that work in small steps and can be more adaptable.

I’m gonna update this post with a picture of this nonsense I have on my right arm for the rest of my life (ps, its rules!). I’m working with limited technology (on the road in Brazil), but I will deliver on this promise. Aight!

Up Up and Away,
Sunshine Superboy

Owls and Tigers and Polarbears- Oh Brother!

Posted in art & music, comics, maps & mapping, science with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 2, 2009 by Sunshine Superboy

“Oh Brother!”
How in Ozymandias’ name did I forget to share THIS?! I had it on my desktop for like 3 months, intending to someday post it. You guys, please appreesh how amazing this is or you’re not my friends anymore:
Pretty perfect, eh? Except that Chuck should SO be Nite Owl…

Oh, and in case you were wondering about the “tigers” in the title, I am referring to Bubastis, Adrian Veidt’s genetically engineered pet tiger (duh):

Anyways, speaking of amateur cartography, some geek cartographer pieced this together based on the views we get in the Watchmen of characters passing each other or walking in and out of buildings. A noble effort, but kinda inaccurate if you ask me. You can get a higher res version here.

Finally, a six-fingered man couldn’t count the number of friends I have with Watchmen tattoos, but this is one of my favorite series of panels that none of them (I think?) have permanently embedded in their skin cells.

…which brings us by to my favorite continent (you may as well learn now that I am obsessed with Antarctica).



oh, and the Polar Bears are… none really. The only polar bears in our universe live at just one pole of just one planet, and it turns out to be the bloody north one. Bohr-ring! On the positive side, the magnetic pols are bound to reverse again sometime in the next couple hundred thousand years, so as long as Al Gore saves the bears they’ll be living at the South Pole at that point! Yay!

I’m done being goofy for the day. Enjoy the snow, unless you’re some spoiled west coast snob who thinks that snow is a “place” rather than a weather event, and you like “go to it”as in ‘We’re driving up to the snow for the weekend’. Ah, how lovely! Fucking jerks.

The World and all of its Magnetic Fields are Yrs,
Sunshine Superboy