Geology, maps, and art - Welcome!

Welcome to JoeMaps, and thank you for visiting!

I've been into maps all of my life: hording any maps I could get my hands on as a kid, and then getting a geologist's dream job as a geologic mapper and cartographer as an adult.

In my 13 years of working as the chief mapping geologist, GIS technician, and cartographer for Massachusetts Geological Survey, I fell in love with the landscape of New England.  The science and art of making geologic maps is an intimate relationship with the land: exploring, often on foot, every rocky outcropping in a given area; walking every hill, and paying very close attention to the subtle details of the land to glean clues as to what lies beneath its surface.

When very high resolution topographic data was beginning to be made available for New England, via LiDAR technology, I, along with many other geologists, was beside myself.  We were getting remote sensing data that showed unprecented topographic detail (among other things) of the landscape: one could see stone walls, old, overgrown woods roads, the grain of bedrock beneath the thin veneer of glacial till, previously undetected landslides, and the myriad details of river floodplains. 

In 2016, when LiDAR coverage for Western Massachusetts was finally complete, I happened to come across a recent, and now famous, LiDAR-derived map of the Williamette River that my colleague Daniel Coe made while he was working for the state of Oregon.  Daniel is an award-winning and extremely skilled cartographer and artist, and I immediately emulated his technique (with his permission) to see what the floodplains of our beloved New England rivers would look like with this level of detail.  They're stunning.

I am thrilled to finally be able to share this beauty with you. 

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