There’s really nothing as visually satisfying as a pictorial map. Each densely packed, illustrated map is a visual feast for the eyes; a fusion of illustration, editorial copy, and cartographic skill. The pictorial map had its heyday from the 1930–60s and eventually fell out of the public eye with the advancement of color photography. While many of these creators of these wonderful maps are not well-known, the hands-down most famous of the bunch is Ernest Dudely Chase.
Inherently maximalist in nature, each of Chase’s maps shows a visual flair that only a master craftsperson could pull off. The combination of layout, framing, color, type style, type design, and illustration style is all clearly on display. Chase flaunts his many skills in a way that makes the viewer lean-in and start reading. But these maps are more than just skill, Chase puts his worldview on clear display as well.