Getting Started With Mapillary - A Beginner’s Perspective

The purpose of this blog post is to welcome beginners to the Mapillary community and guide you on getting started with using Mapillary.

What is Mapillary?

At its essence, Mapillary is a place for you to share and explore the world around you through images captured and mapped across the globe. Community generated, street level imagery allows you to navigate from some of the most interesting and remote destinations to your own street. Our goal is to create a photo representation of the world, a map with photos of every place on Earth.

At Mapillary, we are about:

  • Mountains, parks, rivers, beaches, fjords, trails, all the beautiful outdoor spaces
  • Unforgettable bike paths and hiking trails
  • Hidden valleys and off the beaten track
  • Bustling city boulevards, alleys, sidewalks
  • Beautiful views and lookout points
  • Residential neighborhoods and playgrounds
  • Rural towns and the forgotten roads of the world
  • Anywhere in the Great Outdoors that you feel the world should know about

example example

Mapillary is for the adrenaline junkie, for the nomad, for the road tripper, and the teacher. For the explorers and the wildlife lovers, for the hikers and backpackers, and for many others who use Mapillary in exciting and different ways.

We are a dedicated community of adventurist, mapping enthusiasts, and people who care about places like their hometown or neighborhood. When you share your photos on Mapillary they become part of a fabric of photos from enthusiasts the world over, connected and mapped.

How to get started

First things first. You will need to download the app to your phone or device which is available on iOS, Android, Windows and the Amazon Appstore. Download links and more about the app here.

To begin contributing to Mapillary you will need to create an account. This can be done from the app itself or via our website.

From the app, it is very easy to start capturing your surroundings. There are three different modes that are designed for walking, taking a panorama or when you are biking or driving, preferably using a camera mount. You can find a more detailed guide to using the app to capture here.

Once you have taken a set photos you are happy with, they will be uploaded to Mapillary’s servers the next time you have WiFi access. The photos are then deleted from your phone to save storage space, but can be accessed at anytime through Mapillary.

But, the best way to learn is to get out there. So the next time you are going for a walk or bike ride, take Mapillary with you. You can even go outside from where you are now and take photos of your street by walking up and down the street. Make sure to take photos with lots of overlap so they present a nice continuous, connected street level view of your neighbourhood.

Here are some tips to get started:

  • Keep an eye out for streets, buildings, views and open spaces that interest you
  • When moving slowly, have the camera in walking mode
  • For the best lighting, choose areas where the sun will be behind the camera
  • Map with a friend. You can cover more ground and it is a lot more fun
  • Avoid close ups of people, private properties and restricted areas

You can find more great tips here.

There is also a video to help you understand how to take photos.

example example

That’s it! An easily and simple way to photographically map the world around you. We can’t wait to see the different ways you will explore and create with Mapillary. We always love to hear new ideas so send them through via or hit us up on Twitter.

Happy mapping!

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