View Full Version : Galia - Political, Regional, Topographic maps

10-30-2010, 05:16 AM
I've posted few days ago, the "finished" map of Galia.
I mentioned that this map was only a small global presentation of this fictionnal country.

Here is the thread :

The rest is still in progress.
Here is what it looks like :

Here is a topographic map of Galia (click on map to zoom) :
http://img526.imageshack.us/img526/1609/fondtopo.jpg (http://img59.imageshack.us/img59/1609/fondtopo.jpg)
There is still a big hole in the middle of the map because I made a change in an area covering several central provinces.

Here is a map of all the canopees, a canopee is a small administrative division similar to a US county or a french commune. It will be helpfull to make population maps and stuff like that (click on map to zoom).
http://img841.imageshack.us/img841/8400/canops.jpg (http://img821.imageshack.us/img821/8400/canops.jpg)

Finaly here what provincial maps looks like.
I have a scale problem so I can't show you a complete province but just a small part right now (click on maps to zoom).

http://img594.imageshack.us/img594/7474/19ni.jpg (http://img266.imageshack.us/img266/7474/19ni.jpg) http://img521.imageshack.us/img521/282/39sl.jpg (http://img169.imageshack.us/img169/282/39sl.jpg)
http://img833.imageshack.us/img833/8996/13dw.jpg (http://img828.imageshack.us/img828/8996/13dw.jpg) http://img821.imageshack.us/img821/8909/10cn.jpg (http://img149.imageshack.us/img149/6155/10cna.jpg)

From left to right : The small coast of North Isthmus (Isthme-du-Nord) - The unpopulated province of Silo - The province of Deläväar unfinished map - The mountainous Black Coast (Côte-Noire).

Approximately 10 of the 46 provinces are completed.
30 others are in a good way.
I have just started 3 that need to be enhanced
and 3 others needs to be completely done .

Hope you'll like it.

Steel General
10-30-2010, 12:00 PM
I really like the 'Provincial' maps... nicely done.

10-30-2010, 10:05 PM
That is some seriously awesome detail! Looks great :)

11-09-2010, 04:47 PM
Here is a new topographic map. With rivers this time.
Still in progress... I'm killing my 7 years old computer with this huge file :P

if attached image doesn't work :

11-11-2010, 07:39 PM
Wow, the level of detail on the topography is incredible, and very believable. Adding the rivers gives a little extra punch. It is looking very good!

11-12-2010, 12:26 AM
I agree - you've done an awesome job with the topography. Is it hand-drawn or generated? The provincial maps are a delight too.

I started to say there's some odd stuff going on at the south coast, but i realized you have blue both for water and for 'not fully rendered yet' :-)...

11-12-2010, 05:24 AM
Hi. It is "hand-drawn" on illustrator but taken from drawing I made on paper.

Here is the same map with more landscape. I think the next one will be the last one about topography. :lol:
When done, I'll work on provincial maps and try to fix the scale problem.

11-12-2010, 07:07 AM
looks great, although you have a river on the western side of the map that goes from sea to sea; Unless the bottom body of water is a lake, as your river appears to be flowing north, this is unrealistic. :P


11-12-2010, 07:59 AM
Very nicely done. I noticed some darker blue lines in the southern ocean, does that mean that the land down there has not been entirely drawn in, if so it would explain some of the river violations. Still great work though.



11-12-2010, 10:33 AM
That's right, it's not finished yet so some places may seem a little weird.
Rythal, I think the place you were talking about is now fixed. :)

11-16-2010, 01:31 PM
4th update. This map is almost done. Just have to fix minor errors with rivers and complete the northwest oversea province.


11-28-2010, 04:00 PM
Here is the fifth update. I made new rivers and fixed some problems with some of them and I update the northeastern oversee part.

Except minor problems with a few tiny rivers. It's almost done.

12-08-2010, 05:40 AM
Simply gorgeous. I love your mapping style! I would love to see the map for my book remade with this style! :P

12-08-2010, 05:52 AM
Looking good here. I like the style. The thumb doesn't do it any justice at all.

01-18-2011, 11:19 AM
Ok. My compter wasn't powerfull enough to manage all layers so I made a jpeg image of the topographic map, faded it and added vectorised stuff on it.
So on this next maps are located cities, highways, urban areas and provincial limits.


01-28-2011, 12:02 AM
Neat maps.

02-01-2011, 01:07 PM
Thanks, yet i still have a lot to do to make it completed :)

02-03-2011, 12:33 PM
This looks fantastic. How'd you do the randomized political borders? I've been trying to figure out how to do that for a long time...

02-04-2011, 05:45 PM
I'm not sure if I answer correctly your question but the borders (inner > provincial and outter > border with neighbouring countries) are not randomized, they are based on drawings which I vectorized in Illustrator. :)

02-06-2011, 08:52 PM
Ah i see. That's a lot of work =) Thank you.

02-14-2011, 02:04 AM
The topography is of very high quality! When you said Galia I thought you meant the country from the Valkyria Chronicles series, haha.

02-17-2011, 04:17 PM
Galia always makes me thing of France :P

02-18-2011, 05:30 AM
Well, my inspiration comes from France mainly ( but also Canada, the US and Italy ) :)

03-07-2011, 05:32 AM
Nothing new but I am thinking of multiplying my height layers.
I actually have 7 height layers and I'll try to get 14.

06-15-2012, 12:21 AM
This map is beyond impressive. Though my first thought (teasing) when reading the original post and the length of the project was, "Ah, but have you created the languages yet?" =) Truly fabulous work. Are you creating anything new now that you've finished Liberbiduroustein (had to copy/paste that ;)

01-17-2014, 05:28 AM
Indeed I'm continuing this map.

AND FINALLY. FINALLY, after years of research, I finally figure how to create a topographic shadow made by my pre-existant topographic files in Illustrator.
(all tutorials I've found were about creating from scratch)


01-17-2014, 07:56 AM
Indeed I'm continuing this map.

AND FINALLY. FINALLY, after years of research, I finally figure how to create a topographic shadow made by my pre-existant topographic files in Illustrator.
(all tutorials I've found were about creating from scratch)

Please do share that technique with us, Nathan. I, and I'm sure many others with me, have been looking for the exact same thing! And I must say, your result is amazing!

01-17-2014, 09:54 AM
Thank you. I might do a tutorial after my map is finished.

01-20-2014, 03:57 AM
Add topographical layers, the topographical shadow from above and Rivers


Galia is not an island. I'll place the neighbouring countries soon. :)

01-20-2014, 06:01 AM
Sweet zombie Jesus, those mountains are incredible. I spotted them a while ago, but wow. Really excited to see the full map! That little inset, is that the continent it's on or another country?

Also, 'Gallia' in Latin would roughly mean 'land of chickens'. This amuses me far more than it should.

01-20-2014, 08:56 AM
Thanks !
The inset in a far away province of the same country. Sort of Alaska. :)

Land of Chickens ? Ah ah ! Excellent !

01-21-2014, 03:06 AM
:compass: Added neighbouring countries and coloured the different provinces.
:compass: Changed water colour.


Things are getting really interesting ! :D

- Max -
01-21-2014, 05:29 AM
Looks good though my personnal tastes would go with less bright colors.

01-21-2014, 05:33 AM
Thanks. The export image slightly changed the image and the colours truelly are a bit shaded and less bright.

01-21-2014, 08:54 AM
Nicely done. I would like to see the neighboring countries to put the continent into perspective. It looks good.


01-22-2014, 05:29 AM
The whole world map only exists on a handdrawn map made 10 years ago never made in on the computer. :?

:compass: Added Urban areas
:compass: Added a huge black border to the map
:compass: Added Autoroute Highways
:compass: Added inner provincial admistrative boundaries
:compass: Adeed international boundaries
:compass: Better quality (but huge file)


It goes fast because I only have to add layers that already exist.
Now the most complicated part will start : placing names

edit : don't know if it's the case at your place, but the preview appears black on my computer.

01-31-2014, 06:16 AM
I'm starting to place names and it's a loooooooooooooooooooooooooooong process.
To be honest, previous maps were made at the end of november. Since now on, I'm only working on names (cities, rivers, mountains etc.) to make it more realistic.
Two months of heavy labour. Here is a close look of just cities and provincial names :

60895 60896
60898 60899

What do you think of those so far ? :)

- Max -
01-31-2014, 06:28 AM
Very clean and nice labeling job :)

01-31-2014, 10:09 AM
They look good AND they're pretty. How can I not like? :P

01-31-2014, 11:33 AM
Ny Nathan
I'm starting to place names and it's a loooooooooooooooooooooooooooong process.

Yep :), but, as - Max - said, you're doing that very well! And your mountains are excellent btw.

02-01-2014, 08:33 AM
Beautiful. Enough (everything) said! ;)

02-03-2014, 08:09 AM
Thanks all for those messages :)

02-03-2014, 08:22 AM
Wow... this is one more thread to follow. Its a great map

Indeed I'm continuing this map.

AND FINALLY. FINALLY, after years of research, I finally figure how to create a topographic shadow made by my pre-existant topographic files in Illustrator.
(all tutorials I've found were about creating from scratch)

Please do share that technique with us, Nathan. I, and I'm sure many others with me, have been looking for the exact same thing! And I must say, your result is amazing!

I hope it too :D

02-03-2014, 01:22 PM
Yep I'm one in the waiting as well for that tutorial ;)

02-04-2014, 02:49 AM
Glad to read some might be interested. A promise is a promise. Don't worry I'll do it :)

02-05-2014, 03:34 AM
:compass: Added eliopy (administrative subdivision) names
:compass: Changed size of cities symbol in proportion of their population

I also added major provincial roads and I wonder if it's usefull and/or interesting to put their "number" on the map.
What do you think ?

With ?

Or Without ?

Very light difference I agree. But I can't make my mind. :P

02-05-2014, 04:36 AM
I'd say "with" :) In my opinion, this type of map benefits from all detail you can possibly cram into it. Oh, and it looks midblowingly amazing, by the way :D

02-05-2014, 10:27 AM
The road numbers are not overwhelming and they should be pretty useful on a modern map.

02-05-2014, 10:49 AM
Definitely "with"! You managed the labels very well, so if you can, do it! :)

02-05-2014, 12:39 PM
A modern road map would have the road identification, always, but would probably tone down everything else (I'm thinking water courses mainly, imho you have too many and too visible for a road map). A general geography map, on the other hand would probably do without.
So, what I'm trying to say is that it looks good both ways, but it's a call you cannot avoid taking about what kind of map you are creating.

And also, did you think about adding some letters to those numbers. Modern road systems have different kind of roads with letters added to the identification.. A-07, N-107-A, R-70, whatever...

- Max -
02-05-2014, 12:46 PM
Yup, go with it.

02-05-2014, 12:47 PM
Idk... Some maps show the land features and still number the roads.

Even (bad example, cause I'm lazy) Google Satellite maps have road numbers, I don't think you can say it must be either/or...

And I do like it with the numbers, btw :)

02-06-2014, 02:37 AM
Ok, thanks all for your feedback, I guess I'll go with it then.
Both roads and highways.

02-07-2014, 04:50 AM
Still labeling and changing a bit some coastlines.

:compass: Added road numbers (did not finish but they appear on three screenshots)
:compass: Added Topographic and Geographic features/names
:compass: Added River names

61115 61116
61117 61118

I never expected labeling to be so time consuming !

02-07-2014, 09:39 AM
Lol - that's a lot of labelling though!!

02-08-2014, 01:58 AM
We tend to include subcategories of roads right in their names, but maybe these people are more prosaic, simply sequentially numbering them, and map users know that the numbers repeat based on what political unit you're in. OBviously (to them) Cuboctaedre no. 3 is different from Baiara Mar no. 3 :-). If you want consistency, just figure out your backstory for road naming, and stick to it.

Nice work!

02-08-2014, 12:23 PM
Yes. Each province numbers their road the way they want !
Well, that's how I build the whole thing.
I could use letters in front (such as us states or canadian provinces), for exemple, BaïaraMar road 1 to be BA-1.
Might take place, but I shoud try.

02-14-2014, 04:00 AM
I'm close to the end.

Here is a close view of how the map is beeing built with all the different layers :

The basic layers, the sea, the form of the country. And a red rectangle...

Close view in the rectangle with the first topographic layers.

"All" topograhical layers shown. This is not the most mountaineous part of Galia.

Added provincial and inner-provincial administrative limits.

Let's add colours to distinguish the different provinces.

Now the topographical shadow made in Photoshop is added to make the topography more realistic.

Rivers added.

And cities roundels.Their size depends of their population and administrative status.

Population that is confirmed by the urbanisation sprawl.

Rail/road/highway networks links all the cities between them.

First labels : Town names. Size also depends of the population and administrative status.

Road and Highway numbers added. Road numbers are specific for each province but highway numbers are national.
River and Hidrographical labels added aswell.

Geographical labels added, from mountain names to geographical landforms, forests etc.

Last layers added : Provincial and Eliopy names and also the coordinate grid.

All is "hand drawn" (topographical layers/rivers). I did not use any terrain generator except my pencil and a piece of paper 10/15 years ago :)

02-14-2014, 08:13 AM
Well that's that, you're officially insane... and that's a compliment ;)

02-14-2014, 10:25 AM

Impressively insane :)

Also has given me ideas!! :)

02-14-2014, 02:58 PM
I will want to know, at some point, how you made that "shadow" layer with photoshop, but for now, all I'm saying is this is amazing. 5 stars piece of work!!

I think I read before that you are a geographer. I wonder where you are taking this next... human geography (like land use), physical geography?

02-17-2014, 08:44 AM
Thanks all for your feedbacks.
Don't worry, I promised I'll make a tutorial about the "shadow" layer and I'll keep it. :)

Yes I am a geographer but I have no big serious plans right now but I'm interested in both aspects of physical and human geography.

02-21-2014, 11:03 AM
:compass: Added daily national maritime paths
:compass: Added a "National Park" layer.


What do you think of those ?
(National parks are marked "P.N" on the map cause it's on the francophone side of the country).

I think It's the last layers I wanted to put on the map. So I'll work on the legend to -finally after all these years- finish it. :)

02-21-2014, 11:09 AM
Seems good to me. Especially since you test it one a quite close color and it still works :).
Hmm, there's something of the the french/belgian north coast in the names. Makes it very funny for a francophone ;)

02-27-2014, 02:45 AM
It was indeed my inspiration for this part of the map. :)

03-04-2014, 05:40 AM
Everybody, here is the tutorial I promised concerning the topographical shadows :
:compass: How to make topographical shadow from Illustrator Layer - Technique 1 (http://www.cartographersguild.com/tutorials-how/26395-how-make-topographical-shadow-illustrator-layer-technique-1-a.html)


03-07-2014, 03:11 AM
:compass: First part of the legend