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GeoIgnite 2020 Video: Cartographic Journeys with the Avenza Platform ~ Nick Burchell – Director- Avenza


Nick Burchell’s GeoIgnite talk ‘Cartographic Journeys with the Avenza Platform’ was one of the best graphically designed, creative, engaging, and well organised presentations at GeoIgnite 2020. This comes as no surprise given that two of Avenza’s three products are plugin GIS software for Adobe Creative Cloud: MAPublisher for Adobe Illustrator, and Geographic Imager for Adobe Photoshop. Using a J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit theme, Burchell guided viewers though a journey there and back again exploring the impacts and solutions that Avenza’s products have had though several customer stories.

‘Cartographic Journeys with the Avenza Platform’ is organised into eight chapters:

  • “An Unexpected Party” – The Avenza Platform
    • The Journey from starting as a map production company to becoming a software development one
  • “Over Hill and Under Hill” – Map the Experience
    • Paper and digital trail maps for offline use in outdoor recreation
  • “Inside Information” – National Geographic Maps
    • Efficient workflow for both paper and digital map creation and updating
  • “Fire and Water” – Billy the Kid and New Maps of the Old West
    • Geospatial scientist Billy Roberts’ journey (outside of his work hours) of creating the first ever set of accurate historical maps on Billy the Kid and the Lincoln County War
  • “The Gathering of the Clouds” – Hurricane Florence Response
    • Avenza Maps allowed quick access to first responders to digital maps that can be used offline
  • “The Return Journey” – Covid-19 Response and 2020 Initiatives
    • Flexible payments and pricing to support customers during the pandemic – including free and non-profit licensing for first response and community organisation
    • Annual updates to GeoImager and MAPublisher immediately after Adobe’s annual Creative Cloud releases
  • “The Last Stage”
    • Q&A discussions about: Avenza’s connections with post-secondary institutions including Fleming College and CCOGS; Non-profit licences; Increased productivity from working from home; Impact of remote work on new employees and the entire Avenza team

‘Cartographic Journeys with the Avenza Platform’ is a very engaging geospatial talk that has an excellent balance between narrative and technical details. Burchell provides a good overview of the capabilities of all three Avenza products – Avenza Maps, GeoImager, and MAPublisher, through stories of Avenza customer experiences.

By responding to customer needs, Avenza has created unique geospatial software and apps that allow:

  • Offline use of digital maps on mobile devices
  • Seamless workflow in Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop without having to import or export from GIS outside of Adobe CC – including creating DEMs, performing spatial joins, and changing map projections
  • Beautifully designed finished products

Whether you missed Cartographic Journeys with the Avenza Platform’ during the GeoIgnite 2020 national conference, attended the talk but want to review it, need inspiration for your own presentation, or just really like J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and maps click below to view one of the best graphically designed, creative, and organised presentations at GeoIgnite 2020.


GeoIgnite is Canada’s National Geospatial conference hosted by GoGeomatics Canada. GeoIgnite was held online using Zoom July 22nd to 24th, 2020.  This free event showcased Canadian geospatial community and leaders of Canada’s location technology sector. The conference brought together professionals from government and industry for innovative programming and updates on our sector. Every year GeoIgnite is a unique opportunity for the geospatial community in Canada and abroad to learn, share, and engage with one another at our virtual conference. 

There and Back Again ~ Cartographic Journeys with the Avenza Platform: Nick Burchell – Director- Avenza

Friday 24 July, 2020 GeoIgnite 2020 – Canada’s National Geospatial Conference

You can also read more about Avenza and Billy Roberts’ Billy the Kid and New Maps of the Old West on the Avenza Resources Blog.

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