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Jaxilon
09-22-2010, 04:42 AM
I felt another experiment coming on this evening and this is it. I'm thinking about adding more labels but it's supposed to be bleak.

The text beneath the map title gives some explanation.

mearrin69
09-22-2010, 11:19 AM
Moody. So are the lighter areas land? I look at it and almost think of clouds or nebulae or something. You know, with a little work, this'd make a pretty cool Warhammer 40K-style map for use in Dark Heresy or Rogue Trader.
M

Katto
09-22-2010, 11:36 AM
Nice experiment. I would try to emphasize the coast a bit more.

jtougas
09-22-2010, 11:57 AM
Nice!! I love the story makes me want to go there....:)

Ascension
09-22-2010, 04:49 PM
I'd tone down the rhumb lines some more and then just add some towns and roads and call it done. Has a look to it that I like, sort of a Tear-style gone dark.

Jaxilon
09-22-2010, 09:47 PM
Ok, I think I used everyone's advice on this and I'm pretty happy with how it's going. I feel weak when it comes to labeling so let me know if there are any tips that will help me. I don't think I did too badly though.

Sharpe
09-23-2010, 02:22 AM
Wow, man, that's really outstanding! Very unique. One of your better pieces, IMHO. Simple, yet effective.

Lemme edit your passage, though:

"At the end of the map, where sunlight dies, you will find Wayfairen's Passage. Beware the dark, treacherous sea and winds cold as an ice dragon's teat. There, black scaled leviathans haunt the channels of the lost, and the vicious tribes of 'Or forever keep watch, guardians of some forgotten world.

It's a hundred miles of death, make no mistake, and only desprate fools or heroes would sail there. Of them all, I know of none who have returned. Still, 'tis perhaps the fastest route to the other side and to your destination."

Since you spoke in the first person, I'd put quotes around it. You capitalize proper names: "Go across the sea, the Black Sea, to kill the ice dragon called Bob."

Jaxilon
09-23-2010, 04:50 AM
Thank you so much for the excellent editing. I was working so hard to get the right tone I failed at English :)

Also, that's a nice compliment. It's always good to hear that you are improving.

Here is the "More better English version". :)

Sharpe
09-23-2010, 05:35 AM
Oh, you're definitely improving! I've not been on this board in a long time and I noticed immediately your skills in particular have taken a leap since I was last around.

After a second look, one more edit: There, black-scaled leviathans haunt the channels of the lost, and

Oh, and you accidentally made three quotation marks at the start.

That should do it! i only nitpick because I like what you made. If I didn't like it, I wouldn't say anything. :)

Ramah
09-23-2010, 07:08 AM
After a second look, one more edit: There, black-scaled leviathans haunt the channels of the lost, and


That last comma you suggest doesn't need to be there and would be frowned upon if the true grammar police came a knocking. Commas before the words "and" and "but" aren't necessary, although I admit I use them all the time. Still, forgetting all that I just feel the sentence reads better without it.

Jaxilon
09-23-2010, 12:07 PM
* Updated the above image because it just didn't feel right to upload 4.7 MBs of image for an apostrophe and a dash *

Thanks again, I think you were right Sharpe on the dash and all the rest but I believe you don't have to put a comma before the "and" (as Ramah pointed out). I believe it is ok to but you don't have to. It's been a loooong time since English class though :)

By the way when I made the map I tried to keep it as general as possible. The tribes of 'Or could be Barbarians or Orcs or whatever sort of rough Viking-ish sort of race you wanted. I imagined it as cold, dark, and unforgiving place. A down right nightmare of inhospitableness. At some points rough weather and then at others silent and eerily calm. I saw the tribesman as those who would willingly raid anyone who dared to enter their lands. As soon as a ship was spotted the signal fires would be lit to race across the land whereupon every available warrior would hurry to the ships. Then like a pack of cunning wolves would pursue, cut off, and take any attempting to navigate Wayfairen's Passage.

Of course, as if that wasn't enough, there is a chance you could run into an actual Sea Monster or two.

Jaxilon
09-24-2010, 01:58 AM
I also wanted to give a thank you to Hai-Etlik for providing the Rhumb lines I used in this. I pulled in the ones he created and blew away a bunch of them using the color select which also served to break up the lines a bit which to me added some age or something to the map. Thanks again Hai-Etlik. I would have said something before but I couldn't remember your name. I had to go look it up but when I get on I easily get sidetracked with all the new updates and pretty maps :)

tilt
09-24-2010, 05:28 AM
really cool look - a couple of comments even though I appear to be late to the thread.. the world just moves to quickly. :)
If feel the look of the settlement icons are clashing a little with the style of the map, I'd expect something a bit darker more integrated.
The straight's font is a bit small compared to the towns... I personally like to make the font size represent the size of the map element, so waters and mountains and such are labeled larger than towns.. but is only an opionon :) .. great work :)

Jaxilon
09-24-2010, 12:06 PM
Tilt - you are so right about the size of the lettering. I hadn't realized it until you said something so thank you.

I resized the texts and made some minor tweaks on them. I think I could play around forever with the effects but hopefully this is good.

I tried coloring the town icons darker but it sort of caused the whole map to kind of wash out or just look dingy to me. I don't know why, maybe it's just the contrast, but to me I think this looks a little better. Maybe I just failed to capture what you meant.

I think this is about done unless someone sees something else that I'm totally spacing on. Thanks again for all the feedback guys, it helps alot.

Ascension
09-24-2010, 04:28 PM
The main thing buggin me is the bright colors of the labels (icons and border as well) vs. the muted color scheme of the map.

mearrin69
09-24-2010, 05:14 PM
Agree with that. I still want it to be a star map...passage through the warp storms guarding some forgotten realm of the galaxy.
M

jtougas
09-24-2010, 06:27 PM
Jax it's awesome. I would lose the scale bar up in the right it's way small and as this map (at least to me) depicts a story or a legend you don't really need it..IMO.. :)

Jaxilon
09-24-2010, 06:45 PM
Ok, at the mouth of two witnesses...

So I took another shot at the coloring of icons/labels/borders and I think this one is looking better. Once again thanks for helping me to beat this thing into shape.

Ascension
09-24-2010, 09:27 PM
Darklands and Or still look odd but the rest is good.

tilt
09-25-2010, 01:30 AM
much better :)

Jaxilon
09-25-2010, 01:30 AM
Ok, I see what you mean, they are like too bold or muddy compared to the rest. I've fiddled around with them now for a long bit of time. I haven't done enough labels to get the full knack yet but hopefully I'm getting something out of this.

I ended up finally just tossing most of the outerglow and dropping down the opacity. I did play around with colors for a while but wasn't really happy with the results. So here is the latest WIP with the land names de-powered just a bit.

tilt
09-25-2010, 02:12 AM
perfect :) ... now all the colors match :)

Jaxilon
09-25-2010, 02:19 AM
Whew!

I was startin' to sweat :)

All these little things really do help a map out and sometimes less is more.

tilt
09-25-2010, 02:28 AM
its all in the details :)

Ascension
09-25-2010, 11:15 AM
If it were me I'd dump the bevel and just lower the opacity of the text to be a smokey brown. Text doesn't have to jump out at you and say "hey, notice me"...it can be subtle, especially when it's large or covers a large area. Like you say, less is more.

Jaxilon
09-25-2010, 11:58 AM
Thanks for holding my feet to the fire. I really didn't want to port it back and forth to Inkscape again because somehow I merged the bevel layer onto the words :-/ . I'll try that when I get home this evening.

Jaxilon
09-25-2010, 05:32 PM
So, that turned out to not be such a big deal after all. Now that I've done it a few times I'm starting to like Inkscape more. I think I will see what other things I do with it soon.

Anyway, here is a better, imo, labeling of the landmasses. I did put a slight outline around them because they looked too spindly without when compared to the other labels. I am willing to nit pick this thing because I am happy with how the map is looking at want it to be as good as I can get it before I submit it to the finished area. I think the texts have the same faded look now but I'm still developing my eye for that.