MapCarte 20/365: Seafloor map of Hawai’i by Tom Patterson, 2012


Tom Patterson’s beautiful map of the seafloor topography of the Hawaiian islands is pleasing on the eye due to the balanced layout and choice of blues he uses for the bathymetry. Blue, of course, is routinely used for representing water features but here, Patterson veers towards turquoise and aquamarine that gives us an impression of clear tropical waters. The lighter coastal waters provide a natural vignette to emphasise the land/water zone.

The often dramatic and explosive volcanic forces at work that create the islands are in some respects subdued by the colours but the seafloor terrain is captured in all its jagged detail using a plan oblique technique. Text is well placed and designed with a simple sans serif font and colour aids in differentiating text by function and also to place the labels in different visual planes.

Large hi resolution versions and wall maps can be downloaded from Tom’s website here.