Shaded Relief

Big Island of Hawai‘i Landsat Mosaic

A georeferenced mosaic comprised of 10 Landsat scenes. The natural-color image, pan-sharpened to 15-meter resolution, is seamless and cloud-free.

Elemental Yosemite

An Ansel Adams-inspired map of Yosemite Valley rendered in black and white and featuring highly detailed terrain that derives from 1-meter resolution LiDAR. The terrain is depicted in 3D as plan oblique relief.

Equal Earth - Physical Wall Map  ✔︎

Download a high-resolution world map featuring the Equal Earth projection. The focus is on the natural world—terrain, rivers and lakes, vegetation, land cover, and the ocean floor—free of obscuring country boundaries. The map is free of charge.

Equal Earth - Political Wall Map

Download a high-resolution world map featuring the Equal Earth projection. Three versions are available centered on different world regions, including Africa/Europe (0), the Americas (90W), and Australia/East Asia (150E). The map is free of charge.

Equal Earth Map Projection  ✔︎

The Equal Earth map projection is a new equal-area pseudocylindrical projection for world maps. Created as a visually pleasing alternative to the Gall-Peters projection, Equal Earth shows continents and countries at their true sizes relative to each other.

Adirondack Park Wall Maps

Two large, detailed maps of the New York State park. One map depicts the physical environment—mountains, lakes, and rivers—and the other depicts state lands and cultural features. The high-resolution maps are ready to print on a large-format plotter.

Manual Shaded Relief of the Contiguous US

The relief art also includes southern Canada, Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. It is available as a grayscale GeoTIFF (12,578 x 9,494 pixels), registers with Natural Earth 1:10 million vector data, and is in the Web Mercator projection.

World Political Map

A map of world countries offered in three projections: Patterson, Natural Earth, and Natural Earth 2. Download a PDF or Adobe Illustrator file with MAPublisher georeferencing. Note: map is out-of-date. Use the Equal Earth map instead.

Natural Earth II Projection

The Natural Earth II is a new pseudocylindrical projection with a highly rounded shape. At high latitudes the meridians bend steeply inward to short pole lines. The Natural Earth II has aerial distortion values similar to those of the popular Robinson projection.

Manual Shaded Relief of the World

This page describes a generalized shaded relief that I drew, intended for making small-scale maps of the world and continents. The relief image registers with Natural Earth vector data. It is available as a grayscale GeoTIFF (10,800 x 5,400 pixels).

Patterson Cylindrical Projection

The Patterson is designed for general-purpose mapmaking. It has a relatively compact 0.57 height-to-width aspect ratio that fits nicely in reports, web pages, or any project needing a world map with a rectangular format.

Mountain Cartography Workshop Maps  ✔︎

My experiments with the Texture Shading technique to create relief maps with rock textures. Presented at the ICA Mountain Cartogtaphy Workshop, Banff, Alberta. The maps include Glacier National Park, Montana, and Canyonlands National Park, Utah.

Natural Earth for the National Atlas

Natural Earth relief/land cover data at 100-meter resolution made for the USGS National Atlas. The georeferenced raster images match the National Atlas vector linework. Data covers only the United States.

Gallery of National Park Bird's-eye Views  ✔︎

Peruse dozens of oblique bird's-eye view maps of national parks in the United States. The site offers views produced by both traditional and digital techniques, and by commercial contractors and NPS staff.

Seafloor Map of Hawai‘i  ✔︎

Explore the ocean bottom of Hawai‘i, an exotic world that includes towering seamounts, precipitous cliffs, deep canyons, catastrophic landslides, an erupting volcano, and abyssal plains. The map is available in metric and English versions.

Natural Earth Projection

The Natural Earth projection is a psuedocylindrical projection designed for making world maps. With the source code available at this site, developers can implement the Natural Earth projection in their software.

Shaded Relief Archive  ✔

This website offers over 150 hand-drawn reliefs created by twentieth century artists. The reliefs are georeferenced, high-resolution, and availabe for free. Many of the smaller-scale reliefs register to Natural Earth drainage vectors.

Here you will find matched raster and vector data for making small-scale maps at 1:10 million, 1:50 million, and 1:110 million scale. The vector data is fully attributed, including cultural and physical place names, river tapering, and much more.

World Relief Map with Cross-blended Hypsometric Tints

Raster map art featuring shaded relief combined with elevation colors matched to the natural environment —desert lowlands are brown, humid lowlands are green, and ice caps blue-gray. Soft blues fill the oceans becoming lighter in the shallows.

Natural Earth III – Data for Visualizing Earth from Space

Raster map data for creating illustrations and animations of Earth, including realistic land cover textures, 3D mountains, custom cloud maps, polar sea ice, and city lights at night. Includes desktop pictures of Earth.

Natural Earth II – World Environment Map Data in Natural Color  ✔︎

A raster map dataset that portrays the world environment in an idealized manner with little human influence. A successor dataset to the original Natural Earth, the smoothly blended colors and shaded relief make it an ideal base for general-purpose mapping.

Natural Earth I – World Land Cover Map Data

A raster base map of Earth made from public domain data featuring combined land cover and shaded relief. Peruse a gallery of dramatic landscapes from around the world, download a poster-sized wall map, or download the raw data.

Physical Map of the World

Available for free, this detailed map of the world map features three-dimensional topography, thousands of place name labels, and a new pseudocylindrical map projection. You can view interactively online or download it for printing as a large wall map. A German version is also available: Physische Karte der Erde.

Physical Map of the Coterminous United States

Download a big, detailed, and colorful wall map of the US (minus Alaska and Hawaii). Features include plan oblique relief, cross-blended hypsometric tints, and over 1,000 physical feature labels.


This is a merged bathymetric and terrestrial elevation dataset of the entire world based on SRTM30 Plus—but with fewer unsightly artifacts. It is available in three versions, each designed for a different mapping purpose.


✔︎ My favorites

Maps and Data