Chao Xie, Yufen Chen

Zhengzhou Institute of Surveying and Mapping,Zhengzhou,China


Designing web maps is a challenging task. It needs combining functionality with a high level of visual attraction, and a design that suits the medium and attract the user should be the challenge for the cartographer. In web map design, one of the most difficult tasks for cartographers is selecting harmonious color combinations. The matching color decides enormously visual appearance of web map.


Web maps are different from the ordinary electronic maps and the general or commercial websites. The web map has characteristics of the general website as well as operational functions of the map. Therefore, the matching color of web map should take the users as the center, follow the visual perception theory and the map esthetics theory, and present scientific aesthetics of the electronic map and artistic aesthetics of the website design. Appropriate matching color of web map may not only enhance the clarity, expressive force and readability of web map, but also attract reader's attention. Balanceable and harmonious matching color may form the holistic style of web map, give readers an esthetical feeling, and stimulate readers’ interest in reading maps. It is important for cartographers to know the characteristics of colors and practice repeatedly in order to achieve perfect effect of matching color of web map.


This paper firstly concludes the prominent questions in matching color of web maps based on the analysis of color matching of current web maps, then puts forward general matching color principles of web map guided by visual perception theory and map esthetics theory and takes some examples to explain the application of the principles to web maps with different purposes, and finally presents several kinds of matching color schemes.