View Full Version : First Map! Comments and Criticism Welcome!

08-07-2010, 08:05 AM
Well, it took some convincing, but I finally decided to post a map on here. I've lurked around for a while, and most of the maps on here blow my mind. Ramah's maps in particular are incredible, but I've also enjoyed looking through Ascension's great stuff. Also, the thread on how to properly make rivers was of great help. It's nice knowing there are other people out there who enjoy doing this, as for a while I thought I was alone!

This is a map of Aevir and Indas, two landmasses that exist in this world that I am creating. I'm currently working on a political map, and would eventually like to map out individual regions, kingdoms, cities, towns, and fortresses. I'm also working out the history of the place. I'm eventually hoping to base some writing in this little world of mine, but for now simply making the maps is entertainment enough.

I drew the map out with a mechanical pencil, then added color with colored pencil. This is actually the first map that I've ever added color to, so I'm rather proud of it. No computer programs for this guy, although I do have a friend that has promised to give me Photoshop 3 for me to try :lol:

Any comments or criticism is strongly encouraged, as I know I have a lot to learn! What can I do to get better? Is the scale believable?

Also: this map is my property alone. I posted this in a lower quality than the scanned copy on my computer, and I also have the original. I do not give anyone permission to use this map in any way, shape, or form at all. I would also appreciate being given credit if any inspiration is taken from my maps.

P.S. - This is also my first time posting an image like this on a website, so if it isn't showing up I'll definitely try and fix it ASAP

08-07-2010, 08:16 AM
Looks good to me, man. Welcome to The Guild.

08-07-2010, 11:40 AM
Great looking map. When I first looked at it I thought that the scan wasn't that great, but when I read your comments about this being a lower res version of the original that made sense. I didn't notice any river violations either!

08-07-2010, 01:50 PM
Any comments or criticism is strongly encouraged, as I know I have a lot to learn! What can I do to get better? Is the scale believable?

Looks good, Dmitri. I'm glad to see you took the plunge and posted your work. I followed your thread concerning whether to post your map or not with interest. Indeed, I have it bookmarked for future reference as I have some of the same concerns. I honestly like what you've done with Aevir and Indas. As a fully hand drawn map it translates the geography well. It takes time and a steady hand to get the symbols the way you want them. Your earlier concerns as to whether to post it or not are fully understandable considering the amount of time you've spent here. The only little issue I have is purely a personal aesthetic one: I don't care for the graph paper lines. I can understand why you used it, built in scale and availability, but I find myself slightly distracted by the grid. I'm curious how well you could cut your landmass out of the map by using Gimp's fuzzy select tool. Out of respect for your wishes I won't try myself. :) The island Northwest of the compass rose, is that a volcano there?

Good work, Dmitri. I look forward to seeing where you take this.

08-07-2010, 06:15 PM
Thank you everyone for the replies! After much deliberation, I decided that the critique about my work is well worth posting it on a public site.

And ProfGremlin: First, I'm glad the thread has proved useful to you. I'm going to bookmark it myself, as there is a lot of information there. I can't help but be nervous though, as I have put a lot of time into this map. Also, to your questions.

1. I currently don't have any computer programs (other than iPhoto and Paintbrush) that can allow me to edit the picture. I have done a little bit with Gimp before, is it a free download? If so, I'd love to get back into it, and maybe do some different things with my map that way. However, for the things I'm working on now (political map), the gridlines are very useful. I like knowing the distances between various places, and therefore have a general idea of how long it would take to get from one place to another.
2. Yes! It's a volcanic island. The volcano itself is most likely dormant, although I haven't quite decided yet. The ensuing chaos and happenings after the eruption would make for an interesting story though, wouldn't it?

08-07-2010, 06:20 PM
Very nice! You can use some of the tutorials to a degree even if you're using traditional media. Check out the tutorials on drawing mountain symbols. At the moment your mountains are the basic 'upside down V' style, but if you would like to get something a little more elaborate, the tutorials will help.

08-07-2010, 08:45 PM
I have done a little bit with Gimp before, is it a free download?
Yes, Gimp is a free download. Here's the link: http://www.gimp.org/

The ensuing chaos and happenings after the eruption would make for an interesting story though, wouldn't it?

Oh, yes, all sorts of fun to be had there.

I can certainly see how the grid could be useful for your current purposes. Will you be making a second map for the political layout?

08-07-2010, 09:37 PM
Nice. Wow, is that 1/4" graph paper? If so the map's quite finely detailed.

08-08-2010, 02:32 PM
Wow. Hand drawn maps hold a special place in mine (and I would guess most roleplayers') heart(s). This is a fine example of the style. Can't wait to see what you do with GIMP.

08-08-2010, 04:17 PM
I like it! The style is simple yet nice. A good start!

08-09-2010, 10:02 AM
Thanks again for all of the replies! I just realized that when scanning my map, the colors all were washed out somehow. Does anyone have an idea of how to prevent this from happening? Also, I'll try to respond to all replies in one post here, so bear with me if it's a little hard to follow.

@ Ravelis: Thank you! I know my mountains are rather basic, and that's one thing I plan on working on for my next land map (either an entirely different place or a regional map of Aevir or Indas....haven't decided yet there). I'll definitely have to check out the tutorials!

@ Prof Gremlin: Thanks for the link, I'll certainly check it out and see what I can do with it :D. Also, if my political map turns out well enough, I may end up posting it on here. I've been thinking about doing a city map next though, so we'll have to see what my wandering mind latches on to first haha.

@ Mearrin 69: Thanks! It's actually 1/2" graph paper I believe (sadly I'm not entirely sure...my ruler has been misplaced recently :x). I've never even seen smaller graph paper, honestly.

@ Nolgoth: I've actually never done any of the tabletop role playing before, although I have been interested. I've mainly read different books (actually started making up maps after I read Lord of the Rings in gradeschool) and played some video games like that. For me, creating a different world is incredibly entertaining in and of itself. Hopefully I'll have a GIMP map posted one day!

@ Aenigma: Thank you! I really appreciate the encouragement from everyone so far!

08-19-2010, 02:40 AM
Great looking map - haven't read the other thread yet since I'm working my way backwards through 8 pages of entries due to have been on holiday (yep.. how could I when the Guild was still here *lol*) but I think you've made a great map, yes, the mountains could be more different but we all gotta learn. I don't find the grid distracting (not much), and look forward to seing more from your hand. Have some rep for your first upload with my mace of nice repping +5 :)

08-19-2010, 02:41 AM
oh.. and concerning the colors washing out - try to see if there isn't a control panel in you scanner software - most have. Then play with contrast and color to get a stronger scan :)

08-22-2010, 08:24 PM
Thank you! I'll definitely have to look over the scanner to see if I can't avoid that problem. Sadly, my next map will probably be rather delayed due to being back at college (senior biology major...oh boy) and the fact that I don't have a scanner here.

I'm definitely going to work on my mountains for the next map! First, I need to finish this city map that I started though, haha.