A collection of all blog posts by Alan McConchie.

blog/Alan McConchie

The charismatic megafauna of climate change maps

Alan McConchie | 04.27.23

In the latest episode of the Stamen Pollinate podcast, Stephanie May talked with cartographer Jeffrey Linn about his fascinating series of sea level rise maps and about the concept of “speculative cartography”. Maps that show familiar coastal cities flooded by water are viscerally terrifying and visually compelling, but as cartographers we often struggle with the...

Mapping the endangered California coast

Alan McConchie | 04.24.23

In preparation for Earth Day 2023, Stamen Design has been working with our old friend Al Ramadan to make an interactive map of the proposed West Cliff Recreation Area in the city of Santa Cruz, California.

A New Home for Field Papers

Alan McConchie | 03.28.23

By Jess Beutler (OpenStreetMap US) and Alan McConchie (Stamen Design)  OpenStreetMap US is excited to announce the adoption of Field Papers into the suite of tools we support for the larger OSM community. Over the course of 2023, Stamen and OpenStreetMap US will be working together on this transition and develop a plan for sustainable...

Pollinate Ep. 15- Tanya Ruka & Mapping Native Lands

Alan McConchie | 02.09.23

Cartography is a powerful tool for understanding the world and our place within it, but sometimes maps conceal more than they reveal. Throughout much of the history of cartography, maps have been used to forcibly claim territory and exploit the land, erasing the histories and claims of the people who lived there before. Native Land...

What is Full Stack Cartography?

Alan McConchie | 02.02.23

In a series of presentations and podcasts over the past year, Stamen cartographers Alan McConchie and Stephanie May have been exploring the world of contemporary online map making, and how Stamen Design has developed a uniquely collaborative way of working to build maps for a wide range of clients. In this short recorded conversation, we...

Why Data Gaps Are Often the Missing Link for Data Stories

Alan McConchie | 12.20.22

Researchers are quick to abandon data gaps or anomalies when creating data stories. Learn why digging into missing data helps you tell a more complete story.

#30DayMapChallenge 2022

Alan McConchie | 12.02.22

Every year in November, cartographers around the world take part in the 30 Day Map Challenge, spending their free time creating a new map each day, working through a list of different prompts posted by organizer Topi Tjukanov, and sharing their maps on social media at the #30DayMapChallenge hashtag.  This year, watching the stream of...

Make your own globe-spanning Jack-o’-lantern

Alan McConchie | 10.31.22

Look at this fun thing. You can carve a pumpkin on the globe! I can’t believe it. Isn’t it fun? It is. I am fun.Here are a few more. If you want to be fun too, try it at stamen.github.io/pumpkin. Also what is fun is that your carving is stored in the page URL.  If...

Shadows on maps are getting a lot more exciting, and here’s why

Alan McConchie | 09.16.22

As cartographers, we want to make beautiful maps that grab our readers’ attention. Sometimes we wish our maps could jump out of the screen or off the page, and with a recent trend in cartography we’re starting to see more and more maps that seem to do just that.  New technology combined with high-resolution elevation...

More ways to make your maps go Dark Mode

Alan McConchie | 09.16.22

The other day at Stamen we were talking about a recent post by esri’s John Nelson called “Create a Light or Dark Version of Any Map in Two Seconds” using ArcGIS Online Map Viewer. So of course we were wondering how we could do the same for Mapbox GL styles. We often have to design...