View Full Version : Oakfall

11-04-2010, 07:51 PM
Hello, this is my 2nd attempt at mapping (not counting the sketches that didn't make it :P). Sketching this digitally, but I intend to transfer the map to paper and hand-paint it. I think with Acrylics.

Because paints and paper don't have undo buttons and.. almost no 'saved copies', I'm.. kinda counting on you guys to point my mistakes before the graphite touches the paper. :x *cough*

Temporary kingdom name? I like the word Serok/ Serrok from earlier times; but not sure as what. It's not a peninsula/ island. Just 'Lands of Serok'? Plains?
There's a lot of oaks here, so the color scheme would be autumn-y and earthy. Mid-sized, fairly powerful kingdom, surrounded by 4 other countries and a sea. Religious fanatics --well, more like, Church is powerful because of their ties with the ruling House, but whether the majority of the population actually support their views/fanaticism..
Cornered people tend to defend their views more vocally, anyway. The surrounding countries are of different faith(s).

Size should be around the size of Latvia, somewhere between Switzerland and Austria. [Honestly I haven't thought about the scale that much. It's too easy for me to get carried away with populations and economy.]


This is the initial sketch/ color scheme. Border is maybe too contemporary, but haven't got a better composition yet. Border/ornaments will have oak motifs later. I like the idea of putting the kingdom's crest somewhere in the map, though.


Currently sitting on this stage. Made the mountains into ridges and I think it looks better/makes more sense for this map than the way I previously draw mountains (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v485/Tzsche/cartography/wip/falls1c1.jpg). I've made sketches for the icons, but haven't found the middle-ground between streamlined/iconic (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v485/Tzsche/cartography/wip/fallsWIP1e2.jpg) and elaborate (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v485/Tzsche/cartography/wip/fallsWIP1e.jpg).

Anything I should fix/ modify so far? Thank you. xD

11-04-2010, 08:09 PM
Freaking wow! Sorry, I don't have anything else to say other than that. :)

11-05-2010, 02:35 AM
I already love it
Very inspiring. I don't see anything wrong so far, both pictures are nice and pleasant to see
I agree with you, the bottom picture is better in terms of understanding the relief. I would keep it like this if it was up to me.

Can't wait to see the final outcome!

11-05-2010, 02:43 AM
looks really good, love the colors - I'd love to see a bigger version, its hard to critique when you can't see details :)

11-05-2010, 01:15 PM
Wow, this is looking really good so far Obliro. I like both versions (the autumn palette is fitting and beautiful, though I can see Dain's point).


11-05-2010, 01:20 PM
I love these as well. I can see a real awesome geopolitical map made with the second graphic. It wold of courses have to be an entire world/continent/country/etc. I really need to learn to do hand drawn styles, probably going to need to get a tablet first though. I can see concepts brewing in my mind. Also agree with Tilt on the resolution problem unless it's in order to protect the product if its a commisioned work or something.

11-05-2010, 02:09 PM
I do agree the mountains in the second image look really nice and I think they look better than you older ones. Also I have to echo that the palette is wonderful, but I do have a deep fondness for autumn tones.

11-05-2010, 03:23 PM
Looks great, the colours, too.

11-05-2010, 03:29 PM
Great map! I love that style of mountains and the colors are very nice too!

11-05-2010, 07:38 PM
Beautiful mountains!

11-06-2010, 03:56 AM
Thank you for the replies!

I intend to use the color scheme from the first attachment eventually, the flattish multiply on the 2nd is just so I can distinguish what's what when sketching :D

I'm still rendering the mountains, but earlier today tried drawing the kingdom's coat of arms. Basing the technology/culture from 14th century, I'm not sure the swirly mantling would be appropriate or not. Coat of arms from those periods seem bare. :|


This is the current progress of the map with minimal shading just to differentiate. In original sketching size.. which is not that big xD (no, it's not comissioned, I'm just used to sketch pictures that are intended for traditional media small. It stops me from overcomplicating the picture --which won't translate well when being transferred to paper)


Steel General
11-06-2010, 10:09 AM
Cool stuff here...looking forward to seeing more.

11-06-2010, 10:15 AM
Looks awesome. Do I smell featured map?

11-06-2010, 01:12 PM
Fantastic start! The mountains look very beautiful and a good choice of colours.

03-18-2011, 08:54 AM
I was stuck with the naming, and put the map on hold. Starting on it again 2-3 days ago, imported/ embedded the image into Illustrator and finally start to work on the forests.


- The text colors are just placeholders, the text will be traced and incorporated into the map the old fashioned way (as, paintbrushes and/or pens).
- I like the font for the cities, but the rest are not fixed yet. The capital letters for the cities will be embellished illuminated-manuscript-like.
- I don't really bother writing out the rivers names in the digital file, I'll directly write in on the actual picture.
- .. I'm not sure which landmarks should be named. Mountain ranges, coast features, plains, mountain passes, ...?


Trying the forests, and testing the illuminated capital letter idea. Does the forest style work?
Thinking of doing frame design next, the initial frame design turned out to be far too modern for the direction this map seems to be heading.

03-18-2011, 06:24 PM
Love it. :)

Can't wait to see this progress further.

03-23-2011, 10:15 AM
LOVING IT!!! I must have your skill, I've been struggling to hand draw mountains and yours are lovely.


05-06-2011, 02:14 PM
Any update?
I really love the style and I'd love to see more ;)

C'mon, go back , give us more, we all want more :D

05-06-2011, 02:32 PM
I'll second Dain's request, this looks fabulous so far!


05-08-2011, 04:10 PM
Looks awesome! Like others have said, though, they are a bit small.

05-08-2011, 04:16 PM
Oh hey. Totally didn't realize there was a second page. Everything on this page is fantastic. The size is good, and the mountains are really pretty. I feel as though the trees in the brown ink one are a bit unclear, but that might be what you're going for. Everything else, though, I love.

06-28-2012, 08:09 AM
*cough* Sorry for the disappearing. I changed residences last year and lost some of the naming notes I had for the map, and pretty much just forgot about it/ set it aside until I acquired a new computer recently and moved my WIP files. Like, "...oh hey I have an unfinished map". Put on some base colors and attempted color schemes, and decided to go full CG painting.

Color scheme:

Newest WIP, around half the original size:

I'm not giving up finding the notes yet (they're for plains/rivers/other natural landmarks, thankfully the settlements names are already overlaid on a layer in the WIP), but I still have the unsorted name list. If those notes are really lost, I'll just.. decide new names. :((

06-28-2012, 08:23 AM
Wow... great color scheme so far. Do you plan to keep with the watercolor look or will you tighten it up and make the colors sharper? The thumbnail looks great, I was just surpised when I clicked through the second image to notice a watercolor feel. Not that there is anything wrong with that look, I am just wondering(though personally, I prefer a bit tighter look vs the watercolor style, but that's just me...it's a very nice map regardless.) Also, do you plan to add a splash of color to the trees or is this it?

06-28-2012, 08:31 AM
Thankyou, and, they will be tightened-- build up, toned down, overlaid.. at this point the basemap is treated like an illustration in general. About the trees.. I have no idea/ haven't decided yet. I attempted adding (green) colors but it shifted the whole brown-copper scheme, so if they're getting colored, it'll probably shades of brown-red instead of green? I'll definitely at least darken them, though. They don't look much different from the plains and mountains as it is.

06-28-2012, 05:17 PM
Wow, this is just dripping with potential. Can't wait to see this one develop further!


10-23-2012, 05:18 PM
Alright, it dragged (..couldn't find some notes, a backup folder went missing or so) but unless there's anything you guys think I should improve, it's done. :!: Hopefully I can be more efficient next map, by applying the things I learned from working on this~

10-23-2012, 06:33 PM
Woah! I loved every bit of this thread! The result is beautiful. I really hope there will be more?!
Have some Rep. .

10-23-2012, 10:52 PM
I agree with my esteemed colleague. Freakin' fantastic work. I'm glad you decided to go with green shades for the trees; didn't disrupt the color scheme, and gives some additional depth to the whole thing.

10-23-2012, 10:58 PM
Hot Damn! this is amazing! I can't see anything to add to it. In fact, I think I see a Cartographers Choice award in your near future.


10-23-2012, 11:04 PM
Fantastic map, love the colors.

10-24-2012, 03:25 AM
Well, the mountains are amazing, but I think the border and the labels detract from it.

The border just doesn't fit. It isn't actually bordering the extent both in that it is inside the extent of the map, and that it has so many breaks and irregularities. It also just looks like it was stamped on quite artificially. I think you should just let the map stand on its own without a border. I don't think the compass is really helping either.

The labels are almost unreadable in places due to the poor contrast and overly ornate typefaces. The wide variety of typefaces also causes a bit of a clash. It also looks like you were trying to fake putting text on a path by breaking it into sections and rotating it. Try a "text along path" tool if your software has it, or maybe download Inkscape if not. Don't try to use an envelope deformation, that will just make the text look "smeared".

Your rivers are a bit hard to read as well. They kind of blend into the background in places.

10-24-2012, 11:25 AM
Eilathen : Thankyou :D this one is hopefully done, but if you're asking if I'm working on more maps, I have a new one being checked for composition and concept. ♥

Diamond : Ah I'm glad if it works, I was wondering if it'd look too much like mold >.> thanks!

arsheesh : Hahaha thank you!

Bogie : Thank you! I tried to keep it autumny and warm :D

Hai-Etlik : I see what you mean with rivers/ bodies of water, the text are mostly adjusted to land (colors), so they do look pretty lost on dark blue-brown. Should be easy enough to fix. The curvey texts are made with text to path, I did all the naming with AI CS3/4.. so I don't get how it would look rotated. :?:

About the borders.. I've tried several variations. Solid/ornate frame borders, no borders, etc, and all other didn't look as good as the initial design. There's a space on the left that is too wide to be borderless/ free from graphical elements; frame border would only aggravate the problem, while cropping it makes the plaque and sea look imbalanced. This border follows the rough sketch pretty closely, and as far as I can tell, seems to work best. Zooming in, I noticed a few jagged lines and smoothed some of them, I hope that would help the pasted-on look you mentioned. :)

Here's slightly larger, edited map:

10-24-2012, 01:30 PM
Eilathen : Thankyou :D this one is hopefully done, but if you're asking if I'm working on more maps, I have a new one being checked for composition and concept. ♥

Well, a new one is also good. Looking forward to it.
But, i was talking about fleshing out the rest of this world ;) Why? Well, with this map...there's so much hinted at of the parts that are adjacent to Oakfall...it makes me curious as hell :D
Btw, is there also a history to Oakfall (i mean flavour text fleshing out the setting)? Or is this "just" a map?

10-27-2012, 02:40 PM
Beautiful map! I was so sad when this thread went silent for a time... It is great to see that you have not abandoned the project. ;) The final result looks amazing! I love pretty much everything about this map, the mountains, the atmosphere, the warm colours, the border... One thing that bothers me is that the labels are hard to read in several places, it is a minor thing though. I am very much looking forward to seeing your next map. I have to second Eilathen that it would be awesome to see what lies beyond Oakfall. :D

03-06-2014, 11:25 AM
this is crazy beautiful... some talented artists here... thanks for the inspiration.

08-17-2014, 07:42 PM
Those mountains...I just...I don't even...
I really need to figure out how to make mountains like that...it boggles the mind.

08-18-2014, 10:51 AM
Thanks for the recent activity here, wouldn't have wanted to miss this great piece of work. Truly magnificent