Cartographer Andy Woodruff created the “Beyond the Sea” stunning map collection.
Images credit Andy Woodruff
“What’s really across the ocean from you when you look straight out? It’s not always the place you think.”
As Woodruff explains, it depends on the coastlines and the curvature of the Earth:
It’s easy to forget, for example, that much of Europe is well north of the United States east coast. But they’re not exactly maps of what’s across the ocean from you, at least not directly across from you. To think of east or west as “straight” across is, perhaps, one of those effects of the map projections we see every day.
The latitude maps got me interested in answering the question more strictly: standing on a given point and facing perpendicular to the coast, if you went straight ahead, never turning, where would you end up? There are two reasons why following a line of latitude won’t answer the question.
1. Coastlines are crooked and wacky.
2. The earth is round.