blog/Ross Thorn

Pollinate Ep. 14- Stephanie May & Interdisciplinary Cartography

Ross Thorn | 01.13.23

The modern cartographer needs a lot more than mapping software alone to be successful. Map solutions often require a breadth of knowledge across a team of capable people who know how to speak each other’s language. That’s something Stephanie May learned throughout her career in the geospatial industry. In this episode, the Director of Geospatial...

Pollinate Ep.12- Andy Woodruff & Griping About Daylight Saving Time

Ross Thorn | 11.11.22

Twice a year, people in every hemisphere of the world adjust their clocks to adhere to Daylight Saving Time (DST). Whether you prefer these biannual changes or you’d rather leave your clock alone, cartographer Andy Woodruff has made an interactive map to help you make your case when complaining about it on social media. In...

Pollinate Ep. 11- Amira Hankin & Designing Without Rules

Ross Thorn | 10.17.22

The intersection of the physical world and human consciousness is a playground for designers like Amira Hankin, who know how to leverage both to influence the behavior of an observer. Trained in visual arts and biology, Amira is a lead product designer at Stamen and one of the minds behind Stamen’s award-winning project 12 Sunsets....

Pollinate Ep. 9- James Cheshire, Oliver Uberti & The Atlas of the Invisible

Ross Thorn | 08.17.22

An atlas is a guide to the world around us, perhaps most commonly seen as a collection of road maps to help one navigate across a country. But there are hidden patterns and phenomena that exist outside of what we see in the physical world. In this episode, authors James Cheshire and Oliver Uberti pull...

Pollinate Ep. 7- Ross Thorn & The Realm of Playful Maps

Ross Thorn | 06.09.22

In the “real world” a map is typically used to achieve a very practical goal more efficiently. But what happens when you enter a world in another realm? A world of pretend and imagination, devoid of the constraints of typical cartography? Well then you transcend the confines of practical maps and enter the delightful land...

Pollinate Ep. 5- Christina Conklin & The Atlas of Disappearing Places

Ross Thorn | 04.14.22

Time. Space. Salt. No, these aren't a new take on necessary elements for cooking a delicious meal. They are some of the core themes that artist and author Christina Conklin explores in her work. Whether it's patiently waiting for saltwater to evaporate and form intricate patterns on a concrete floor or painting maps of climate change data on dried sea lettuce, she is inspired by the ocean and all the elements and organisms within it. In this episode, Christina discusses her book The Atlas of Disappearing Places and the beautifully painted maps that accompany insightful and thoroughly-researched stories that elucidate the intimate connectivity between humans, the ocean, and the planet we all call home.

Cartographers Play Video Games: A Review of the Map in Elden Ring

Ross Thorn | 03.25.22

Elden Ring has been the buzz of the gaming world since its release in late February. As the latest title by From Software, it’s the studio’s first foray into an open-world role-playing concept for their extremely popular and infamously difficult games (typically referred to as Souls or Soulsborne games from two notable games in their catalog, Dark Souls and Bloodborne). It’s also the first of these games to include a map, which really excites us at a cartographer studio with some avid gamers.

Pollinate Ep. 4- Alan McConchie & The Maps Underneath

Ross Thorn | 03.10.22

Like any good product, a basemap is something most people don’t notice when it’s well-designed. Typically providing context beneath a navigation route or other geographic data, the basemap is arguably the most widely-consumed type of map in modern cartography. However, today’s average map user might tilt their head when they hear the term “basemap” for...

Pollinate Ep. 1- Eric Rodenbeck & Mapping Emotions

Ross Thorn | 12.09.21

Combining scientific research with spiritual illumination is hard work. But when you're presented with an idea for a map of emotions by some of the world's top emotion researchers and the Dalai Lama himself, you rise to the challenge. In our inaugural episode, Stamen founder Eric Rodenbeck discusses the difficulties and breakthroughs of bringing such a task to fruition and his personal and professional journey leading up to the creation of the Atlas of Emotions.

Announcing PLN8 – A new podcast by Stamen

Ross Thorn | 12.02.21

Announcing our new podcast about data, design, and the people that bring them to life.