View Full Version : Atreysa Maps

04-29-2010, 06:45 PM
Been working on these maps for a while, and have reached a point where I need some critique/suggestions ^.^ Bit of background on the map and the labeling: this world is a bit toss-pile in that although I know where I'm going with a lot of stuff I haven't mapped it all out. I've created a political map of the center continent, Sutiherin, and an historical 'map' detailing where the nations were, how they migrated, &c. but the other continents are languishing in terms of that level of detail at the moment. The labels on the world map are in a language I created called Trajan, and pronunciation is a little funny. Ey = ei-yuh, ou = oh-uh, o = ah-oh, gh is from Gaelic Manx (no idea how to explain the pronunciation), and ch = (Bach). My feelings will not be tragically horrified by anyone's pronunciation as I can't actually hear you ^.^ Anyways, any suggestions/critiques/comments are fully welcome.

The final world map image is rather large for legibility - my apologies.

The first image is the equirectilinear map taken into G.Projector where set up a Wagner (I think) projection for the final labeled map. The second image is of the same equirectilinear map with various overlays and color corrections applied - I don't think it would work well for a labeled map, but I'd love some feedback on it anyway. The third image is the labeled map; I'm considering adding some flora and/or fauna images to the outside border area, but I'm not sure if that would detract from the overall map. Thanks for your comments/critiques/suggestions!

- Alizarine

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04-29-2010, 07:23 PM
Hard to comment I think. I like your first map because it's nice and bright and big and it looks very nice. But I like your second one because it's darker and I liker darker colour schemes with higher contrast. Sphere-ry type maps I can't really comment on. Never really played with those.

If I were to pick one, it'd be the second though I'd change the landmass palette slightly to suit. I'd be interested to see some more local/regional maps though.

04-30-2010, 06:53 AM
I like the shape of the continents :D

04-30-2010, 11:50 AM
Great work! I can only imagine how long that has taken you. I actually like the map with the darker water the best, but they are very good. Personally, I like the layout you have now and wouldn't add any kind of border, but that's 100% up to you. Again, very nice work :)

04-30-2010, 01:45 PM
Wow, coming a long great! haha I just posted on the thread from Pasis you asked about and I mentioned his tutorial, which you seem to be familiar with anyways ha, but you seem to be running into a huge problem I still face, and thats the whole scale idea. Assuming this is a world the size of earth, I mean don't get me wrong it looks great, but looking at the forests and mountains with the size of the continent it doesn't seem to "fit". It all depends on your style of course, but thats just my 2 cents, how to fix it, well thats easier said than done, cause I'm still trying to really figure out something that works! Anyways good luck and keep going.

04-30-2010, 08:08 PM
Thanks for the comments ^.^

@ Yandor: definitely see what you mean; I have a real problem with scale. I did find a tutorial recently on here about using PS to create a pixel:mile(/km/&c.) scale that was really helpful, but I think I might still have this stuff wrong.

I've uploaded a zoomed in & cropped pic of the new mountain/forest size I'm working with - thought I'd get some feedback before I start on the rest of the map. I like everything else alright, but I'm open for any more suggestions. I've also uploaded a larger pic of the northern 1/2 of the central continent for comparison (this is just working with the mountains & forests and a bit of a new base-ground texture, which is why a lot of stuff is MIA).

- Alizarine

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05-06-2010, 01:11 AM
So an update is long overdue for this; college is a pain -.- Anyway, I went ahead with this scale on a single continent to see how things go. I actually completely overhauled everything except the basic layout/placement of stuff and the landmass shape. No labels for now - I want to make sure I'm getting the size of stuff right. I might add a few icons for capitals/major cities/ruins/&c. tomorrow; I need to take a look at my historical timeline first (and of course decide if I like where this is going).

- Alizarine


By the way, I think it's 2 miles per pixel. If this looks totally off, please let me know - I might very well have set it up for 2 km per pixel and my brain is just leaking o.o

05-06-2010, 01:17 AM
I like the textures that you have chosen for these maps. Beautifully done. Oh, and by the way, great to meet another "Brown-coat" here at the forums (Firefly lives!).


05-06-2010, 03:38 AM
First off you pull this off nicely considering all the styles your working with. But I should say that this is a very unique style and I enjoy following this. I like the scale of the trees better. There might be too much contrast between the forest and the rest of the land. But I like how you blended out more of temperate or savanna climate from the forest a medium green. Do more of that. I like your controlled color scheme too. The globe looks the best. It would be cool to see some other projections too.


05-06-2010, 03:46 AM
looking really good - love the "crater" in the north - your rivers feel a bit smooth, maybe some additional twist and turns to those :) ... looking forward to seing more :)

05-06-2010, 11:01 AM
Ahh much better Alizarine, but something another person told me about deserts on one of my maps...

I don't know how much you are interested in the realistic climate, but the placement of your deserts looks arbitrary.

You are right that deserts often occur on one side of mountains, but it's more specific than that... they occur when the mountains block the prevailing wind, causing it to dump on the rain on one side leaving now moisture in the clouds to rain on the other side-- until the winds have a chance to pass over the ocean, or large lakes/seas and pick up moisture from evaporation.

So there it is if you care about those details.
The Link to that Thread (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?9896-Land-of-Arvorn/page2&highlight=kalrum)

Thats the only thing I can really point out at this second, haven't mulled over it enough yet, but as I was reading along the desert ideas, they do happen along seas and oceans, but it all depends on the "wind" most of the time... I'm no expert at all, not even a little bit but you've got that desert hanging out between an ocean and a sea, with no mountains really in between (or land for that matter) to block the ocean/sea moisture from unloading on the desert.... So just my 2 cents!

Great job none the less!

05-06-2010, 10:02 PM
Nice work. I love the colors in both sets of images (from the first post), but for different reasons.
The lighter color scheme looks great and makes me think more of an atlas. I definitely like the projection-style map. My only suggestion there might be to lighten up the forests, they seem to contrast a little too much with the more muted colors in the rest of the map.
The darker map is gorgeous, and the vivid colors are great. If you can come up with a good color scheme for labeling it, I'd want to print it out as a full-size poster and hang it on the wall.


05-06-2010, 11:53 PM
Thanks both you guys for the comments.

@ Yandor: the desert is there 'cause I actually worked out the climate areas and stuff (totally anal-ytical there...). I then totally flumped on being a real perfectionist, so the desert is, yeah, a little east of where it should be. I'm thinking of moving it, actually - just gotta get over the whole "it took so long I don' wanna change it!" phase ^.^ I'll try and get fixed up version posted soon.

@ Natai: I still really like those first maps I uploaded - I think I'm gonna have to try replicating some of those techniques with these new maps, since the scale was off in those first ones.

05-07-2010, 03:39 AM
So really minor update here - moved the desert a bit (understatement?) just to try out a new location. Dunno if I'll leave it there, but I'm kinda going for a semi-large desert in that area and I'm willing to fudge on the actual "correctness of location" to get it there. The crater is gone temporarily (it was the result of a massive cataclysm at some vague point on the time line & I was working on some political maps the time before the crater, so there it went); the rivers ... yeah, they need to be tweaked. I drew 'em in at about ... 25% zoom for some reason and haven't touched 'em up yet. I think I'll have a political map or two to post some time tomorrow, and possibly a river update. Oh, and the ocean's paler just so I could see stuff. I'm also tryin' a darker blue - oceans color, however, is not my main concern right now ^.^ Thanks for all the great comments!

- Alizarine


oh, and @ arsheesh: every man there go back inside, or we will blow a new crater in this little moon ^.^

05-07-2010, 08:00 AM
oh, and @ arsheesh: every man there go back inside, or we will blow a new crater in this little moon ^.^
still flyin .....

05-07-2010, 11:02 AM
...I am a leaf on the wind, watch how I soar...

05-07-2010, 12:14 PM
Yeah, that phrase never works out well...

05-09-2010, 02:49 AM
So a political update here - I was really busy today but had a bit of time to throw together a rough political map of some of the earliest years. I'm using this map to explain some country/nation movement to myself so the countries on the final map won't be where these are; I'll also be cleaning this up later. I'd love some comments about the sizes of these countries/nations (whatever). I'm thinking some are a bit too big? Oh, I even wrote up a brief "history" of the year this map was made! Go ahead and skip it if it's too much info, but this is about all I had time for today.

"In T0B23, the southern end of Sutiherin is ruled by 22 human countries; central Sutiherin is governed by 6 Marugar countries, 7 Sekchar countries, and 6 Rerukan countries, although the northern half of the desert and a large expanse of land just south of the rainforest are controlled by wandering nomadic tribes comprised of a generally even mix of humans and Dairex. The rainforest is home mostly to semi-nomadic Dairex tribes that wander set territories and, generally, avoid all the other tribes. Some of these Dairex tribes also contain Holoki; these mixed tribes are more dangerous and prone to entering other tribe's territories and attacking guerrilla fashion to obtain slaves and an valuables the tribe may have collected. A portion of the northern rainforest is controlled by 5 Zaichi nations, two of which allow Human and Dairex travelers to live and trade in their lands. To the west of the rainforest is the greatest concentration of Holoki, with 7 nations controlling almost the entire western coast, west of the mountains. Those Holoki that move into the rainforest often join the Dairex tribes and defect from their original Holoki nation; this is so common any Holoki known to have moved into the rainforest is considered no longer true-Holoki and is banished from their nation. The eastern coast on the east side of the rainforest mounts are controlled by 7 countries composed primarily of Marugar, although many Marugar nations allow Zaichi, Dairex, and Rerukan to live within their borders. The eastern wastes are home only to beasts and demons."

- Alizarine


Oh, and sorry about the lack of opacity on those colors - just realized you can't see the geography underneath. The fix will have the geography showing through. Just have to figure out a good way to integrate the political borders with the geography so they don't overwhelm each other too much ^.^;

05-09-2010, 04:26 AM
Cool I skimmed the history (read it in the morning) but seems pretty good so far, I can't wait to see the cleaned up version... I think the kingdoms are fine, might be a bit many (but I have no idea where you are in your history or the population) So yeah just my 2 cents, in the morning I'll see if anything else pops into mind, but great job so far!

05-13-2010, 01:55 AM
Quick post here; way too much goin' on at college right now for a map-update.
@ Yandor: Thanks for even skimming that history ^.^ I'll be working on the clean version soon; there are a lot of kingdoms 'cause the people's are in flux and trying to figure out the "pecking order" so to speak. The map was made by the remnants of a small country that was consumed by one of the Marugar nations; this map was made about 80 years after they fled their country while everyone was still trying to build their kingdoms and stuff. There are 2-3 more political maps I'll be creating to explain where certain countries are in the "present", the people that live there, and how they got there. I'm crazy like that. The final map will be geo-political with the "present day" countries represented, but I need to explain their origins to myself (so I can design the actual sentient races; again, just me bein' crazy).

Question if someone feels like answering: I saw a map the other day that used images of stuff like animals/boats/clothes to indicate where you could find certain cool/tourist-y stuff on a map of Spain (like Flemenco dancing in the east, or something). Anyway, I was thinking maybe I could use pics of the races to indicate the races living in a certain country/nation/whatever. Dunno if it would look good or too "childish" for the type of map I've got going so far, but eh. I'm tired, and thinking pictures are nice ^.^ Thanks for the feedback, everybody.

05-23-2010, 07:44 PM
I know it's been a week and a half since my last update, but finals week is not just a week long (_ _) It also took me a while to name all the capitals and major cities ^.^; But here's an almost final update for the political map of the continent. I went through 4 political maps to get the countries right where I wanted them - I might fix them up and post them here over the next week, and I'll also be labeling the geographic map for upload.

- Alizarine


05-24-2010, 10:03 AM
If i understand correctly the big green round tribal region is forest or jungle surrounded mostly by mountains around the edges, right? And those rivers are flowing towards the center?

Then there's no (non magical) way for those rivers to just disappear. If elevation prevents them from flowing out to the ocean, then you would get a significant lake or multiple lakes at the lowest point, or at least a huge swamp. Forests require plenty of rain (unless they are on a river), and all that rain has to go somewhere.

The size of the dots on your latest dotted border are over-dominant. Your previous map had it a lot better.

05-24-2010, 12:19 PM
Great maps!! ^^

I especially like the western continent for some reason. The shape, perhaps.

Also, interesting languege you've got there. ;)

05-24-2010, 12:25 PM
Then there's no (non magical) way for those rivers to just disappear.

The rivers could easily have gone underground. Considering the whole area seems like a meteorite impact zone, who knows what fractures may have occurred.

I agree with the size of the dots though. they could do with being smaller.

05-24-2010, 04:04 PM
The rivers could easily have gone underground. Considering the whole area seems like a meteorite impact zone, who knows what fractures may have occurred.
Yeah, then what?
We have a large well-watered area probably bigger than the Amazon Basin, and all the run-off water goes into caves year after year and never fills up? Doesn't sound plausible to me.

If somebody wants to do something fantastical on their map, i have no complaints. Somebody who might be accidentally doing something fanatic probably wants to know.

05-24-2010, 05:05 PM
Yeah, then what?
We have a large well-watered area probably bigger than the Amazon Basin, and all the run-off water goes into caves year after year and never fills up? Doesn't sound plausible to me.

If somebody wants to do something fantastical on their map, i have no complaints. Somebody who might be accidentally doing something fanatic probably wants to know.

I agree - the rivers to nowhere bug me, too, from a realism standpoint. But, depending on the setting, you could have a giant karst region (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karst_topography) and deep in the depths below the earth, the underground rivers feed into some kind of magical portal to somewhere: a largely benign fae realm or somewhere more terrifying...

05-25-2010, 02:35 AM
I'm actually really glad homework has kept me out of the river discussion, 'cause I had some time to give it some thought ^.^ Excellent points all around, and actually ... everybody's kinda right (except for the underground portal part). I really do need to reduce the size of those dots (they look "okay" in thumbnail size, not so much at full size - sorry 'bout that). Anyway, @jwbjerk, the rivers were bothering me, but I didn't know what to do with them so I just left them for the time being ... then forgot about them >.< I think I like the idea of a rather large swamp with some lakes here and there; and yes Rythal, it is a meteorite impact zone - good catch, and yeah - there are supposed to be some crevasses here and there that water does pour into, and yup - there are some underground lakes. Man ... I was so focused on the whole "political zones" and LABELING (that was a pain) that I totally forgot about the geographic stuff. Thanks for all the help with that, guys - I'll see if I can get a fixed version up in the next day or so.

- Alizarine

05-29-2010, 04:08 AM
Map update: added a marsh area to explain where all the water in the rainforest crater-basin goes, as well as fissures from the impact. Also fixed the size and color of the dots for the tribe areas, and updated the key both visually and with geographic features (and some little tid-bit pictures that have no meaning for the map except to look nice; I might remove them later).

I am thinking of naming and/or dating the ruins (very much in doubt); I am more strongly in favor of just indicating which locations were destroyed during a war vs. those that were abandoned for some other reason. I'm also debating whether or not to include large farmland areas; not sure if the scale is right for that.


- Alizarine