ArcGIS Pro

Steal this ArcGIS Pro sunrise hack, please

(please read this blog post with the peerless melody of Here Comes the Sun dancing through your mind)

Wellllll, I shared some examples of this illumination effect almost five years ago but by golly the blog post was really light on specifics. Those who may have wanted to try it out were really up against it trying to reverse engineer it based on some descriptions and a screenshot. What was I thinking? Please forgive me and accept this ArcGIS Pro (v 2.8.2) project package, which is more accommodating. Maybe it will fill you with gumption to tweak the colors and parameters to get all sorts of custom lighting effects?

Pop quiz, hot shot. Can you identify these places?

Sunrise illumination effect in ArcGIS Pro.
Sunrise illumination effect in ArcGIS Pro.
Sunrise illumination effect in ArcGIS Pro.
Sunrise illumination effect in ArcGIS Pro.

The Pro project package consists of a World Imagery basemap, and three instances of the peerless Rajinder Nagi‘s constantly-improving, impossibly beautiful, unreasonably handy terrain layers from Living Atlas: a terrain hillshade layer for lighting, a terrain elevation layer for valley shadows, and another terrain elevation layer for mist.

But beware! Once you tread down this path, the illicit nuances of untraditional cartographic illumination could consume you. You may never make a default-hillshaded map again. Are you prepared for that?

Wow, look how realistic this one is!

Allen Carroll's early morning early morning photo from an airplane departing California.

Just kidding that’s real. Here’s a link to the project. Enjoy!

Love, John

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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