ArcGIS Pro

Experiments with line symbology IV - Vivacity

In this final part of a four-part blog post I’ll show how to make animated lines in ArcGIS Pro. In Part I I explored fundamentals of line symbology, then multivariate symbology in Part II. Part III illustrated how to make maps of the intensity of coincident lines, and how to represent movement on a static map. Vivacity is the characteristic of being lively and animated – and that’s the focus of this episode of Wisley’s Walks.

I am using a year’s worth of GPS tracklog data from walking our dog, Wisley and experimenting with different ways of representing the coincident lines. Animating the lines to show direction and movement, and how they build cumulatively is the final piece of the jigsaw. The following video steps through how to make animated lines in ArcGIS Pro, and then export them to a video using stop-motion.

And although the how-to above illustrated a little of the final animated ‘Wisley Walks’ video, here’s the full 20 minute version that compresses 730 walks across 365 days and 1,332 miles.

I hope you’ve enjoyed these experiments with symbolising linear features. There’s plenty of different approaches to think about, each of which expresses a different characteristic of the thematic data behind your lines.

Happy mapping!

About the author

Ken is an academic cartographer and geographer from the UK, and since 2011 he teaches, talks and writes about cartography, and makes maps to demonstrate map design at Esri. He considers himself a professional 'cartonerd', educated with a Bachelors in cartography and a PhD in GIS and health geography, and over 30 years experience designing curricula, and teaching map design and GIS. He has presented and published an awful lot and is in demand as a panelist and keynote. He blogs (, tweets (@kennethfield), is past Editor of The Cartographic Journal (2005–2014), and past Chair of the ICA Map Design Commission ( 2010-2018). He’s won a few awards for maps, pedagogy and kitchen tile designs. He is author of the best-selling books 'Cartography.' and 'Thematic Mapping' and leads the Esri MOOC on cartography which has been taken by over 200,000 students interested in making better maps. He snowboards, plays drums, builds Lego and supports Nottingham Forest.


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