View Full Version : Non-random tutorial?

12-07-2010, 03:05 AM
I love the tutorials available here, but they all seem to create a random map. I have several maps already made and I wish to play around with alternate looks. I especially need assistance with mountains and hills.

Are there tutorials that do not involve random generation?

I would be glad for the assistance.

12-07-2010, 03:34 AM
It all depends on the style you're looking for. I don't know what you mean about "random". A lot of the elements create aspects of randomness in these tutorials, but it's in a controlled environment. If you don't like something, you can always take a step or two back and do what you need to get it right.

If you want to use picture brushes to get your mountains and hills rather than use bump maps to get topography, then look in the Resources(?) section below Tutorials and How-To and look through brush sets.

When I do my mountains, I make a selection, feather it very slightly, and then fill it with Shaped (Angular) gradient and overlay it onto my map. I'm not sure what the Photoshop equivalent of that is, but I'm sure someone can help you out there.

12-07-2010, 04:32 AM
When I say "Random", I mean the tutorials I've seen use the cloud filter to create landmass and mountains based on a random placement. I would like to know of some tutorials that allow for chosen placement of landmarks.

I like the tutorial by Ascension here - http://www.cartographersguild.com/content.php?116-Ascensions-atlas-style-in-Photoshop
but it uses a random creation aspect. How do I get this look (or something similar) with a pre-designed map?

12-07-2010, 05:21 AM
There's plenty of other options. If you're willing to put in the effort, you can draw the coastlines yourself. You are never, at any stage, required to use rendered clouds. I've got quite a few maps where I haven't used them. Still, like you said. The map is "pre-designed". That doesn't mean it's "pre-finished". If you're still at the design stage, feel free to be a tiny bit liberal. I'm certain that someone adapted RobA's Artistic Regional Map to photoshop somewhere along the line, and in that one, he actually worked from a pre-designed map.

12-07-2010, 06:20 AM
try looking at Pasis mountains (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?10655-Hand-Drawn-Mapping-(for-the-Artistically-Challenged)&highlight=gidde) tutorials (a lot more than mountains in that) - he don't use randomness - i used his technique for my Mountain Realms (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?10461-Mountain-Realms-a-region-map.) :)
And if you're looking for a more "drawn" look - Gidde made a tutorial (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?10655-Hand-Drawn-Mapping-(for-the-Artistically-Challenged)&highlight=gidde) about that :)

12-07-2010, 11:25 AM
Long ago, RobA designed a tutorial for creating fractalized coastlines based on an existing coastal outline, the "Not So Random Coastlines" tutorial (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?874-Making-Not-So-Random-Coastlines-in-GIMP) for Gimp.

And I think the tutorial tilt meant to link to is the Rising Up the Mountains (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?4405-Award-Winner-Rising-up-the-mountains-in-Photoshop) one.

12-07-2010, 01:32 PM
All you really need to do with most of the tuts that start with the "randomness" is jjust move past that step to the point where they are telling you what to do with the ramdomness, and insert your preplanded layout. You can then follow the rest of the tut. Like others have said, you can always use other techniques besides what is mentioned in the tuts to get the results you want.

k....back to work I go.....

12-07-2010, 05:54 PM
thanks Midgardsormr - somehow I haven't managed to click on apple+V when I selected that link ... and yes, that is exactly the one :)

12-07-2010, 06:23 PM
The use of the clouds in my tuts is for two things - make some random shapes for continents and provide the texture for mountains and land and such. If you already have the landmasses shaped then that makes things even easier for the clouds will provide you with mountains...they won't necessarily be in the right places but the Lasso tool can be used to lasso up a chunk and move it into place. If you're really good with the airbrush tips for the brush tool then you can more accurately sculpt your terrain by painting...takes some practice but that's the way I do things now. If you'd like I could work up a tut for how to make a map with predefined coasts...but not tonight (Christmas concert for my singing nieces).

12-07-2010, 10:30 PM
And there is also Old Guy's tutorial: http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?9056

-Rob A>

12-12-2010, 07:18 PM
I did a similar one where you "block in" the landmass and then randomise the edges. I think it's connected to RobA's GIMP tutorial in the early posts.


Yes, it does create randomised coastal edges. Yes it also allows you to adjust the amount of distortion caused by the random-cloud.
No, you can create your island to have the shape of a dog's head if you wish.

12-14-2010, 08:51 PM
look for
on youtube (it's a Free photoshop Actions set)

02-12-2011, 10:47 PM
some times ago, I went thru this very interesting research paper called Terrain Synthesis from Digital Elevation Models (http://www.howardzzh.com/research/terrain/) where the authors explain how to create fantasy DEM based on real DEMs and a template. they also explain how to blend two adjacent DEM into a continuous seamless one.
and to demonstrate their work, they made World Machine Plug-ins (http://howardzzh.com/research/terrain/worldMachine/index.htm)

don't know if this is what you are looking for.

02-13-2011, 03:31 AM
Now that's some wicked cool. Thanks for the link, man.