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Introducing Artboard 2: The Graphic Design App for Creative People.

Mapdiva announces the release of Artboard 2, full-featured drawing software to create crisp vector graphics and layered illustrations. Artboard 2 is positioned as an alternative to more complicated and expensive vector drawing software. Spend more time drawing and less time searching for elusive commands. Overflowing with new features and a tidy user interface, its speed and responsiveness are complemented by smart techniques for interacting with drawing objects. With its affordable price point and plethora of in-app and online resources, Artboard 2 puts quality graphic design tools squarely within reach of new and experienced creatives.

“Since 2011, our motto for Artboard has been “Simple. Powerful. Fun,” co-founder Graham Cox explains. “It keeps us focused and forces us to carefully consider each and every feature; to balance functionality with usability.” That simplicity and power are evident in Artboard’s new tabbed interface, more powerful styles editor, and “smart” drawing tools.

Artboard 2 combine shapes at your fingertips

Free in-app resources make Artboard 2 all the more appealing. Artboard’s built-in library of over 1900 styles and clip art include a wide assortment of maps, shapes, color swatches, and more. And these aren’t just standard clip art images – they are crisp vector graphics that you can completely change the size, color and design of to make your own. Flexible templates help small businesses, students, hobbyist and 2D game designers get started on their projects quickly, such as making business cards, posters, pixel perfect icons, and right-sized social media graphics.

Artboard 2 quick start vector clip art

 

Notable Features of Artboard 2

  • AT YOUR FINGERTIPS CONTROL – Single direct Select tool for editing objects, combined with a new tabbed interface, puts what you need at your fingertips. You can add and remove points, simplify paths, rotate and resize shapes, edit objects through direct and numeric input, move center points, combine objects with Boolean operators, crop and clip photos, reset object’s bounding box, and… much, much more.
  • SUPER SMART DRAWING TOOLS – “Live” adjust all vector shapes, paths, and curves directly. New Geometry Tab means no more digging through menus to find edit commands.
  • MORE POWERFUL STYLES EDITOR – Go way beyond simple stroke and fill styles of basic illustration software. Artboard’s Styles Tab is used to create and edit expert “stacked” styles (including arrowed strokes, rough strokes, pattern brushes, gradients, image tile, patterned and hatched fills, and more).
  • TIME-SAVING WORKFLOWS – Export your drawing, selected objects, individual layers, and/or “slices” of your drawing, at multiple resolutions and scales, supporting multiple Color Spaces. Print shrink-to-fit to a single page, and “poster-tiled” printing over multiple sheets of paper.
  • EDITABLE CLIP ART & STYLES – Includes over 1900 royalty-free fully editable clip art and graphic styles to customize, plus a Library to store your own.

Artboard 2 software is exclusively for Mac OS X. Read the full Release Notes here.

Artboard 2 Featured Image

How Artboard Is Influencing Our 2nd Generation Products

In 2008, Mapdiva delivered Ortelius – the creative app for custom map design. Our drawing engine proved so rich and powerful that many of our customers encouraged us to build a general purpose graphic design app. When Artboard was born in 2011, we didn’t anticipate its impact our company.

“Simple. Powerful. Fun.” was our mantra for Artboard from day one. Since Ortelius is a more serious niche product, we didn’t anticipate how much Ortelius would be informed by this thinking. But “Simple. Powerful. Fun.” keeps us focused on the customer. It forces us to carefully consider each and every feature; to balance functionality with usability. It is simplicity and power that make Artboard a joy to use. Since Ortelius and Artboard are built on the same drawing engine, this naturally spills over across products.

That is why this year we will release Artboard 2 before Ortelius 2. Development of our next generation products is well underway, and it is interesting to see how Ortelius 2 is being informed by our development decisions with Artboard. As a sophisticated app, Ortelius is by its nature more complex. Yet Ortelius 2 will simplify the UI while increasing functionality. With both apps, we are paying attention to workflow, putting everything in reach, and giving you rich new features for even more to love.

P.S. We can’t yet announce exact release dates. We know it always takes more time and more coding than expected to make a project work. To quote an adage about software development, “the first 90 percent of the work is easy, the second 90 percent wears you down, and the last 90 percent – the attention to detail – makes a good product.”  Well, we’re in the last 90%. We’ll start posting sneak peeks soon!

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The Walker Party, The Revised Story Mapped with Ortelius

For over 150 years the accepted story about the Walker party’s 1861-1863 expedition through the Southwest was based on a handwritten manuscript by D. E. Conner, a member and assumed historian of the party. The manuscript was published posthumously in 1956 as Joseph Reddeford Walker and the Arizona Adventure. Long thought to be based on notes taken while underway, detailed research reveals that much of what Conner wrote was based on embellished writing and a generous dose of hindsight bias using observations written by others who were in the Southwest before the Walker party.

The Walker Party, The Revised Story is a fresh look at the party’s formation in California and route into New Mexico Territory, and an analysis of the adventures of these rugged men, including their:

• Flight from advancing Confederate troops in New Mexico Territory;
• Return to Santa Fe once the territorial capital was back under Union control;
• Obtaining passports to travel in the territory;
• Encounters with Apaches along the Rio Grande;
• Stops at forts Craig, McLane, and West;
• Questionable involvement in the capture and death of Apache chief Mangas Coloradas;
• Prospecting for reported “sands freighted with gold” near the headwaters of the Gila River;
• Passage by San Xavier del Bac and through Tucson;
• Approach to and encampment at Maricopa Wells among the Pimas and Maricopas; and
• Route to and up the Hassayampa River and discovery of gold in central Arizona Territory.

Why is “The Revised Story” an important book? Joseph Reddeford Walker and the Arizona Adventure by D. E. Conner is long out of print and largely unavailable, even at the finest libraries. However, assumed facts from Conner’s book have been widely quoted in many histories about the 1860s Southwest. These quotes have not always been consistent with what Conner wrote, aside from questioning whether Conner was right in the first place. Certain key episodes that Conner wrote about, particularly the capture of Apache chief Mangas Coloradas and the details of the Walker party’s ascent of what would become the Hassayampa River, both of which Conner seemingly made up to a large extent, have been perpetuated in the works of some highly acclaimed historians.

The Walker Party, The Revised Story is an important book because it is transformative. It sets the records straight and corrects widely used incorrect details.

“The book represents seven years of research and writing,” Pieter kindly remarks about our software, “Ortelius, the interpretation that it provides to my story, is part of the reason that I persisted.”

Book format: A quality paperback, 274 pages with a comfortable font size, 14 custom maps made with Ortelius software with detailed captions, an extensive bibliography, and an image of a mid-1800s painting spread across the front and back covers illustrating the period view north from the Pima-Maricopa villages, the view that the men of the Walker party would have seen in 1863.

Pieter Burggraaf retired as a writer in the semiconductor manufacturing industry. Pete has lived in Arizona most of his life and is a graduate of the University of Arizona. An avocational historian, he researches, writes and occasionally teaches about people whose lives and adventures touched historic Maricopa Wells and the Pima and Maricopa villages, at the confluence of the Salt and Gila rivers, a location he calls “The Junction of American Southwestern History.”

See more examples of this project in the Ortelius Users’ Showcase.

The Walker Party, Map 3, Across New Mexico and Arizona Territories and up the Hassayampa River, 1861-1863, Burggraaf, Written History Needs Maps

Written History Needs Maps

By Pieter S. Burggraaf, 2015

Put it before them briefly so they will read it, clearly so they will appreciate it, picturesquely so they will remember it, and, above all, accurately so they will be guided by its light.

– From the pen of Joseph Pulitzer (1847-1911)

The telling of history needs illustrative maps. In a rather simple view, history is the movement of people across geography in the past. Henry Walker and Don Bufkin captured this idea in their wonderful reference book Historical Atlas of Arizona. According to these authors, “History is the story of man—his actions, his comings and goings, and his settlements. As most of mankind’s actions and travels and the places” where men and women settled are “controlled by natural settings—terrain, climate, geography, and even geology—an understanding of the land is essential to an understanding of history.”(1)

Unfortunately, in so many books today about historic events, and even many of the classic books of yesterday, the text usually screams for a map to illustrate where events happened and what the people of the times thought they knew about the lay of the land. In many written histories, the maps used seem to have been an afterthought with authors or publishers plugging-in whatever they could find. Many times, the maps used do not provide the details that are necessary to support the text where the maps are called out. Often the maps used are disconnected from the period of history being discussed. Or, large maps are crammed into a small book format rendering them illegible.

When I began writing The Walker Party, The Revised Story my goal was to put equal effort into the many maps that I felt the work needed. It took some time for me to get map-making right—almost six months—but I eventually taught myself some basic cartography and developed techniques that suited my limited skills.

So, I have created each map in this book to fit legibly on a book-size page. Where possible, I have based the background geography and the positions of rivers, towns, and other geographic locations upon a period map. Each of my maps includes notation about its source. In addition, some of the maps in this book include reproductions of the original hachures—the classic symbols for representing geologic relief in cartography—from the source map.

Readers who are familiar with the areas depicted on the maps in this book will undoubtedly find misrepresentations compared to today’s maps. These should not be considered errors as such, but rather indicative of the incomplete knowledge of the territories of New Mexico and Arizona at the time. This will help the reader understand why the people in this story were often off by many miles when describing where they were or where they were going, or in many cases simply had no clue as to their whereabouts.

Finally, I have written extended captions that enable each map to stand alone with its intended information. I believe that you will find the maps that accompany this revised, more expansive story about the Walker party very informative, and I trust that the text will be equally rewarding.

Notes for Written History Needs Maps:
(1) Henry P. Walker, Don Bufkin, Historical Atlas of Arizona, Second Edition (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press,1986), iii.

Pieter Burggraaf retired as a writer in the semiconductor manufacturing industry and is an avocational historian. He researches, writes and occasionally teaches about people whose lives and adventures touched historic Maricopa Wells and the Pima and Maricopa villages. This essay is excerpted from his new book, The Walker Party, The Revised Story: Across New Mexico and Arizona Territories and up the Hassayampa River, 1861-1863, available from Amazon.com, used with permission. Read about the book and view some of the maps in the Ortelius Showcase.

New Balance X Sneaker Design Zac Lynn

Zac Lynn’s Sneaker Design with Artboard

Zac Lynn is from Perth, Western Australia, is 16 years old, and absolutely loves sneakers (as you can tell).

Zac got his start designing for a clothing line when he was looking for software to design on. “I stumbled across Artboard, it caught my eye straight away so decided to give it a shot, ” recalls Zac. “The clothing designs went really good, but then I one day was just searching the web and realised some guy wanted a sneaker design done for the Asics Team with over 10000 followers on Instagram, I messaged the man running it, we started talking and I did a design up, he absolutely loved it. This pushed me to do more.

 

Sneaker Layout Design Zac Lynn

 

“I started doing my own designs as well as designs that have already been made by Nike, Puma, Reebok, etc etc.. I posted my drawings onto a page called Perth Sneaker Society where each one got amazing feedback and hundreds of likes. This pushed me to do more and eventually opened a website to sell my designs,” he says. This young designer is now gaining the attention of sneaker design manufacturers. “And its all thanks to ARTBOARD!”

View Zac’s ongoing portfolio at http://zaclynndesigns.bigcartel.com/<

Ronnie Fieg x Puma Disc Blaze OG COA Coral Toe Sneaker Design Zac Lynn

If you aren’t familiar with sneaker subculture, here’s a well produced 2014 documentary about the Perth Sneaker scene:

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Artboard 1.9.7 Released

Today we release Artboard 1.9.7, a qualified version for use with OS 10.10 “Yosemite.” This version contains further tweaks to appearance for OS X Yosemite, SVG import enhancement, and a few important bug fixes. The update is paired with the roll-out of a completely new companion website. It is a free update for all existing users.

Get the update through the Mac App Store. For non-Mac App Store version, if you do not have automatic updates activated, choose Artboard > Check For Updates from the main menu.

Read the complete Release Notes.

Seasonal-Clip-Art-2014

Happy Holidays! Enjoy These Free Seasonal Clip Arts

To close out the year, we are giving away a few of our favorite seasonal clip arts.
SeaonalClipArt
To Install
Download and unzip, then do one of the following:
  • Double-click the unzipped ‘December_2014.symlibrary‘ file to automatically launch the app and install, or
  • Within the app, choose Window > Library Manager (CMND-5) and use the Action Menu (looks like a gear) in the lower left of the Library Manager window to choose ‘Import Collection…“.

This clip art set works with both Artboard and Ortelius.

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Artboard 1.9.6 Released

Today we release Artboard 1.9.6, a qualified version for use with OS 10.10 “Yosemite.” This version fixes a serious bug that affected outlined/masked text that was introduced with Yosemite, along with a few other minor bug fixes. It is a free update for all existing users.

Get the update through the Mac App Store. For non-Mac App Store version, if you do not have automatic updates activated, choose Artboard > Check For Updates from the main menu.

Please be aware there is a known issue with this release. Apple’s Yosemite has introduced an issue with poor response using pinch zoom gestures on the trackpad. Several other software are reporting this issue as well. We have submitted a report to Apple and hope they will address it soon. In the mean time, we have fine-tuned it as much as possible, but understand pinching to zoom does not give the same satisfactory experience we have had in the past and expect. We are keeping a close eye on this.

Read the complete Release Notes.

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Ortelius Users' Showcase

http://www.mapdiva.com/portfolio-item/fire-fighter-response-maps/

Somewhere an alarm blares and firefighters quickly put on their gear and jump onto a fire engine to rush to the scene of a blaze. In the front cab, a captain uses the radio and fumbles through a more than 100-page binder of addresses to find the exact location of the call.

In a job where one or two minutes can mean the difference between someone living or dying, Cathedral City, CA, Fire Engineer Terry Martin has found a way to shave a few more precious seconds off response times in his city, using maps made in Ortelius and viewed on iPads.

“Before, when we would get a call, we would have to pull out a map (using old-fashioned binders) and navigate to a grid number and then look for a specific address,” he said. “The addresses are so small in the book that bouncing down the road at 2 a.m. and trying to pick out a number or street name when you are half asleep was kind of difficult. Plus, turning on the lights in the cab would make it very difficult to see.”

So Martin customized some iPads they had for his department. He used fire-resistant material that firefighters use for their coats and made a cover for the iPads so that they can resist the desert heat, dust and/or any other danger they may encounter in the front seat of the fire engine. He took all the information from the three-ring binders and combined them into easy to use digital maps. Using Ortelius, Martin built the maps then exported them to PDF so they would be zoomable without loss of resolution. He uses ”PDF Pro” for iPad as the viewing app. The maps, which can be scrolled through with a touch of a few fingers, include hydrant locations, housing-complex layouts and other critical information firefighters need. “We can add whatever we want to these maps, from trash shoots to exit points,” he noted.

Now, the devices are being used in every paramedic truck, fire engine and chief’s vehicle that the Cathedral City Fire Department has in service. Cathedral City Fire Chief Robert Van Nortrick said the digital mapping lets his firefighters find addresses faster and the devices are much easier to use than the bulky binders of the past.

Martin, a 24-year veteran on the job, was twice honored as the Cathedral City Fire Department “Firefighter of the Year” at the 17th and 18th annual Peace Officer and Public Safety Awards in Palm Desert.

See more examples of this project in the Ortelius Users’ Showcase.

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2015 Map Competition Announced

The Cartography and Geographic Information Society (CaGIS) Annual Map Competition is under way. Cartographers and mapmakers in the United States and Canada are invited to submit their maps to one of the following categories:

  • Reference – A map whose objective is to show the location of a variety of different features.
  • Thematic – A map whose objective is to illustrate a theme or the relationship among several themes.
  • Book & Atlas – Atlases and books use original maps as the primary or significant communication device.
  • Recreation & Travel – A map designed to assist readers in recreation or travel.
  • Interactive & Digital – A map designed for digital media; it should include some sort of interactivity or animation.
  • Other – A map that does not fit into any other category (e.g., globes, art pieces).

Last year, Ortelius cartographer Rhonda Lerner was awarded Honorable Mention for her map, “Rhonda’s Centro Histórico Guide & Street Map of San Miguel de Allende” in this prestigious competition.
Submissions are due February 1st, 2015. The online submission form and further directions are available at www.cartogis.org/awards/contest.php.
(Note, Mapdiva is not affiliated with this competition.)

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Ortelius 1.9.6 Released

Today we release Ortelius 1.9.6, a qualified version for use with OS 10.10 “Yosemite.” This version fixes a serious bug that affected outlined/masked text and labels that was introduced with Yosemite, along with a few other minor bug fixes. It is a free update for all existing users.

If you do not have automatic updates activated, choose Ortelius > Check For Updates from the main menu.

Please be aware there is a known issue with this release. Apple’s Yosemite has introduced an issue with poor response using pinch zoom gestures on the trackpad. Several other software are reporting this issue as well. We have submitted a report to Apple and hope they will address it soon. In the mean time, we have fine-tuned it as much as possible, but understand pinching to zoom does not give the same satisfactory experience we have had in the past and expect. We are keeping a close eye on this.

Read the complete Release Notes.

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Artboard 1.9.4 Released

Today Mapdiva announces the availability of Artboard 1.9.4. New in this release:

ENHANCEMENTS:
• New ‘Very Fine’ smoothness setting for the Freehand Path tool is added to the Artboard > Preferences.
• ‘Ultra Fine’ drawing mode added for detailed drawing with the Freehand Path tool (for example, while zoomed-in). Hold down the Option-key while drawing with this tool.

FIXES:
• Multiscreen crash while moving a document to another screen.
• Crash entering Versions Browser.
• Single text box handles multiple text styles without getting overwritten by a single text style.
• Ungrouping a text box having multiple text styles getting overwritten by a single text style.
• Ungrouping a text box having bidirectional text (e.g., Arabic) getting overwritten by a single text style.
• High-resolution images becoming lower resolution after editing.

Artboard is a full-featured graphics design app for creating vector drawings and illustrations. Design logos, posters, floor plans, technical drawings, fun fashions, web graphics, and more. Unlike pixel-based images, vector graphics are composed of editable objects that are infinitely scalable. Artboard 1.9.4 is a free update recommended for all users.