GIS Tips: Make QGIS DEMs more “3D”

Applying a hillshade effect to QGIS DEMs

Relief shading gives a DEM a more “3D” look. In the popular ESRI ArcGIS, there is a function to apply “z” amplification to the hillshade effect, this is quite easy to replicate in QIGS.

To use relief shading in QGIS, follow the steps outlined below:

Ensure that you have your DEM open in QGIS, and have an appropriate colour map shading. The DEM without relief shading is shown below.

QGIS relief shading 01.png

From the menu items select – Raster >>> DEM (Terrain Models)

Select the input DEM, and an output filename (a new hillshading DEM will be created). Make sure the Mode is set to Hillshade.

QGIS relief shading 02.png

Open the output file. Position this in the Layer Control section above the DEM, and set a transparency for the layer.

QGIS relief shading 03.png

The DEM should now have relief shading, the relief shaded DEM is shown below.

QGIS relief shading 04.png
Nick D

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