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njordys
05-10-2010, 02:54 PM
Hey there, this is my current project, a work in progress. I have tweaked on this map for some time now, but I feel I'm ready for some feedback and perhaps tips and tricks on how to improve it. I'm open for suggestions on anything (althought suggestions I dont agree with wont be added ofcourse :P ).

Basicly, I am a newb at using computer programs to enhance my maps. I have some basic knowledge about GIMP, but it is very limited. Keep that in mind if you have fancy ideas on what I should do with this ;) I need thoroughly advice.

However, I have an aim to make the towns (the red) to look like towns, and not just red blobs.

As you can see I am going for that bright-colored, almost childrens-story-book look. I want this island to be vibrant fantasy island, full of life. There is a background story, this is a way past the apocalypse- setting. Here is the basic layout:

Currently, Isoyni is an island-group located in northeastern Greenland, around 20 000 years from now. The ice of Grenland has melted and the island is fertile and now flourishes. Most of mankind have perished in diseases, but there are a few survivors. Civilization is long gone.
However, there are some remaining artifacts of the old ways still in the world. Nano-technology artifacts, far superior to our own modern technology, still exist and are hunted by the various human groups in this area. Those who control these artifacts gain magic-like abilities.

This is a work in progress, nothing is hammered in stone.

Now, the name Isoyni comes from the norwegian word for ice, "is", and a norwegian dialect-word for island, "°yni, °yna". So what sounds better, Isoyni or Isoyna?

Guess thats all for now :)

njordys
05-16-2010, 05:59 PM
A new version, nothing radical has changed, only some new effects on the forests and grasslands.

What remains is a touch on the cities. I want to make miniatyre city-maps to replace the red dots (red symbolise cities atm), then use the colour red to symbolise road network instead. And the mountains clearly need an overhaul. I made those mountains in a version with less pixels, now that I've scaled up the map those mountains are a sorrowful sight.

Does anyone have any good advice on how to mold those mountains? I've seen many maps with satelite, photo-realistic mountains on this site, however that is not what I'm looking for. As said earlier, this is more a childrens storybook-map. So if anyone know good methods to create fantastic and colourful mountains, I'd like to learn from you. ;)

njordys
08-31-2010, 11:56 AM
Okay, I have learned a little more on what one can do with GIMP and general editing of drawings on computers. Thanks for the very useful tutorials on this site. :)

(I didn't even know what layers where :blush: )

Here is a new version, an enormous step forward but still a little skecthy.

http://fc00.deviantart.net/fs71/i/2010/243/7/7/isoyni___new_method_test_by_njordys-d2xp2wd.jpg

As I am a bit on and off, so it might take awhile for another update.

bartmoss
08-31-2010, 01:31 PM
Nice, I like it. Good shape, too, this one will turn out interesting. Reminds me a bit of a final fantasy continent. The third pic is the best so far, the colors are much nicer together than the original neon colors.

Obligatory River Policing: Rivers don't generally spread or split, they converge; so you should probably fix those a bit. :-)

njordys
09-02-2010, 02:12 AM
Thanks :)

Ah, I'll try to fix those rivers. There are some lakes which could be split in two.

I had hoped to make the main mountains seem higher. Any tips anyone?

njordys
03-14-2011, 07:52 PM
Almost a year later and with a bit more experience, I try to make another version of this map. Now it is a more classical fantasy island, with an old parchment as a background and so on. Divided the island into different regions, based upon landscape and who lives there. Must research/think up some names eventually.

Whaddya think?

jbgibson
03-15-2011, 01:21 AM
This one's nice, njordys. The colors are no longer neon, but against the dullness of the parchment they jump out nicely. The rivers are kind of wide - hard to distinguish between them and fjords / inlets. Hand-drawn groups-of-bumps style mountains would fit a simple style well, whether storybook of now, or in-character low-tech of your setting. If this is formerly glaciated territory, considering the depth of the ice sheet, I'd expect most mountains to be ground down instead of sharpened.

Isoyna rolls off my tongue easier, but that's just a slight preference.

njordys
03-15-2011, 07:06 AM
Thank you for the feedback :D

I agree with you about the rivers, I'll change them. I try to make some mountains too, but I'm still working hard to improve my drawing skills, might take some time. I'm toying with names and population now, thinking altered norse sounding names, like these; Alvbu, Westerland, Austrheim, Myrkskau, Frysi.

njordys
03-17-2011, 05:46 PM
Uploaded two work-in-progress versions of this map. One with names (or wip names ;) ) and another which represent the population of the various regions.

Red lands are mainly inhabited by humans, black with trolls and purple with elves. It's a fantasy map, after all.

I'm also trying to find inspiration for mountains, wonder if I'll go with the brush-method or the hand-drawn. Hand-drawn are much work, but it might look nicer.

Slylok
03-18-2011, 01:20 PM
Hand-drawn are much work, but it might look nicer.

I think the hand drawn look would be worth the work for this one, imho.

njordys
08-02-2011, 07:54 PM
I have abandoned the old-worn map style, for now.

Here is another version made after scouring this forum for tutorials. Tried to make it in a semi-satelite-ish kinda style. I'm satisfied, since I have learned alot and I feel i master GIMP on a new level now. However, I'd always like input on it. How to improve and such. Keep in mind I dont know much of technical terms and jargon, being both a newb and non-english speaker ;) But all help is appreciated

Here is the new WIP.
New name is Isonea. I think that might sound better, correct me if I'm wrong.

Also,forgive me for not posting and abandoning my own threads. I tend to forget my hobbies after a while, and then pick them up again later.

arsheesh
08-02-2011, 08:39 PM
Hi there Njordys! Hey not a bad start. I do have some constructive criticism to offer though, since you are asking. First, the black outline surrounding the land in your maps seems a bit thick, distracting even. I'd recommend reducing it a bit. Second, the blending of the mountains and forests into the surrounding terrain could use a bit of work. Regarding the mountains, I'd suggest adding a 100-200px (depending on the size of your document) gausian blur to the brown Mt. color layer. As to the forests, in the Photo-realistic Trees thread I've added several updates regarding how to help blend them into the surrounding terrain more naturally. I keep meaning to update the tutorial itself but just haven't found the time to do so yet, but you can find these updates in the thread itself. Third, perhaps a bit more overall color variation-to the map to indicate different types of terrain-would be nice. Otherwise, it's a decent beginning. Looking forward to seeing your progress on this map.

Cheers,
-Arsheesh

njordys
08-03-2011, 01:11 PM
Thank you so much for your input, I really appreciate it :)

Here is the newest version.

I've been toning down the black outline, adding some much needed colour variation (worried if I went overboard with it). Tried to variate terrain heights a bit, but uncertain on the execution. I have not been able to read the forest thread yet, but yeah, perhaps the forests need some modification too.

arsheesh
08-03-2011, 01:27 PM
No prob man. The outline looks much better. Also, the mountains blend into the surrounding terrain allot more naturally now. The color variation is nice as well. Look forward to watching the map progress.

Cheers,
-Arsheesh

njordys
10-11-2012, 06:51 PM
Heh, it has been over two years since I started this thread. Anyway. I made a new version a few months ago. I'll link it here.

njordys's deviantART gallery (http://njordys.deviantart.com/gallery/#/d5at2cs)

I used a tutorial from here to raise the mountains a bit, and reworked the colors some. Any tips for further advancement?

njordys
10-15-2012, 04:15 PM
Here I tried to make the ocean a bit more simple as I thought it was a bit distracting.