Style Guide Submission template

Thank you for your interest in helping the ICA Commission on Map Design assemble its style guides! Our goal is to provide a series of “quick-start kits” that provide inspiration and examples for mapmakers looking to reference an existing aesthetic.

We need your help finding the materials from which to build these guides! If you have a style you’d like to propose, please submit the following details to A sample guide is provided here so you can see the sort of details we’re trying to collate.

Style Title
A clear, simple title will help people find what they’re looking for.

Style Introduction
A succinct statement of under 50 words that points out the key characteristics of the style.

Provide 3 to 5 adjectives which describe the style.

List 2 or 3 artists, cartographers, or graphic designers whose work demonstrates the style; this will help users of the style guide know where to search for further inspiration.

Map Examples
Attach (or provide links) to 2 or 3 existing maps which exemplify the style. If attaching files, provide full credit information.

Other Inspirations
Attach (or provide links) to 2 or 3 examples of other graphic art (posters, postcards, album covers, book jackets, etc.) which exemplify the style. If attaching files, provide full credit information.

List 3 typefaces which fit with the style. You might consider the typography used in the Map Examples & Other Inspirations sections as a starting point here. At least one of the typefaces should be freely available. Ideally, the three typefaces will show some range, rather than being very similar to each other.

Provide 3 colour palettes, each with 5 colors, that fit with the style. Again, these can be borrowed from the Map Examples & Other Inspirations sections.

Cartographic Design and Aesthetics FAQ

The Commission on Map Design co-sponsored a session at the meeting of the North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS) in Portland, Oregon in 2012. The purpose of the session, spread over a number of activities was to provide a forum to discuss aesthetics in cartography; to begin to bring together thoughts on the definition, purpose and value of aesthetics for practicing cartographers and those simply making maps.

A special issue of Cartographic Perspectives (Vol 73) has been published that records much of the work at this meeting and provides an important and timely expression of aesthetics in cartography.  The full set of papers are freely available as HTML or PDF downloads here and an editorial written by Commission Vice Chair Alexander Kent along with Chair Kenneth Field and Vice Chairs Bernie Jenny and Anja Hopfstock introduces the issue by discussing cartographic design and aesthetics as an FAQ.