ArcGIS Living Atlas

5 minutes to make a map!

We’ve all been there. A request comes in and you don’t have a lot of time. Like 5 or 10 minutes. What! Ok, ok, be cool, this is going to be ok. Just breathe…and think. Think. Yes, we’ve got this. We’ve got the tools and the resources to crank out a serviceable map in the amount of time it takes to wait for your name to be shouted out to retrieve your coffee order.

… aside …

I always use the name “Gunther” for pickup orders. There are invariably like 6 or 7 other Johns waiting for their order; why add to the confusion for the sake of accuracy? Gunther? Now that’s a pickup name that commands attention. “Ah yes, that’s me, Gunther; thank you very much.”

…back to the map making…

Here’s how to put together a perfectly reasonable landscape poster in a matter of minutes using ready-to-rock Living Atlas layers in an ArcGIS Pro layout…

0:00 Five minutes??
0:12 Blending hillshade
0:29 Depth and mist!
1:36 Layout time
1:56 Creative composition
2:25 Title tricks
4:10 Make it pop!
4:46 Export formats

Thanks for watching! I hope some small fraction of this is useful in your mapping adventures. Happy Fast-Mapping!

Love, John

Decorative landscape map of the Grand Canyon

About the author

I have far too much fun looking for ways to understand and present data visually, hopefully driving product strategy and engaging users. I work in the ArcGIS Living Atlas team at Esri, pushing and pulling data in all sorts of absurd ways and then sharing the process. I also design user experiences for maps and apps. When I'm not doing those things, I'm chasing around toddlers and wrangling chickens, and generally getting into other ad-hoc adventures. Life is good. You might also like these Styles for ArcGIS Pro:

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