Some locations around the United States have high-resolution, color, aerial photography available from two specific periods of time, some entire states have none. Washington, DC has imagery of 2002 and 2005, however the 2005 imagery has not been released to public (I’m still waiting to see if NO WAR shows up on my roof!). All of my DC maps use the Feb 2002 imagery. Google currently uses imagery of Washington, DC that was taken probably in March or April of 2002 because the Mandarin Oriental Hotel is still semi-completed in both sets of imagery.
Chicago, on the other hand, also has available imagery taken in April of 2002 and April of 2005. So I obtained both years for the Village of Schiller Park, Illinois, which is located right outside of Chicago’s O’Hare airport. When preparing the imagery I made sure that they were identical tessellations, differing only in acquisition date. I attempted to match the tone as best as I could.
The idea behind this process was that when printed and hung next to each other, they would create a rudimentary stereoscopic projection that would look largely similar, but with temporal artifacts showing change in the built environment.
The one regret is rendering the maps at 9K x 6K instead of the normal 18K x 12K, I would have captured more detail from the source aerial photography. But aside from that, I am going to make more of these temporal diptychs when the imagery is available. I think it’s a unique method of showing time, space, place, and symmetry.
Ironically, even though both sets of imagery present Schiller Park in the recent past, those of you in Chicago are technically seeing the future, because Google will most likely update their servers with the same imagery I’m using. So in reality, you are looking at a map of the future!
Look closely and watch time bend.