Ask A Cartographer

Raster Shadow

February 13 2008 | 2 comments
Categories: Cartographic Effects

Is there a way I can place a shadow around a raster feature. I have an aerial raster for an entire county, when I place a shadow the shadow is outlined in the data frame border instead of the county boundary. I appreciate any suggestion.

Mapping Center Answer:

The Whitewash effect we documented for the Crater Lake map should do the trick for you. Instead of using white, use gray or dark gray.

Drop shadow for county posted by Aileen Buckley on Feb 13 2008 3:07PM
I had thought maybe what you were asking was how to add a shadow for the county feature. For example, if you have a raster of a county, like maybe just a single value raster of a county on a background of nodata, and you want to add a shadow to the county only, if you try to shadow the raster you will get a shadow of the entire raster rectangular extent, not of the county only. The only kind of shadow you’ll get from a raster is of the extent. If you want a shadow of just the polygon boundary of a feature, then you would need to vectorize it and then make the shadow from that.

If you want to make a shadow of the vector of the county, then the trick is to make a copy of that poly feature and offset it to the left or right and up or down as you would like the shadow to appear -- than shade that the color that you want the shadow to appear as. We used this effect on the Oregon Earthquakes map to Create a drop shadow effect for geographic features.

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