View Full Version : May 2011 Challenge Entry - Nationa of the Broken Empire

05-05-2011, 10:16 AM
This will be my first time competing in these contests. No art yet; I want to plan this out.

Doing research on what constitutes a nation.

List of elements to be included in project:

The location must feel like it has history to it. Nationa will be a nation-state that formed from the dominant ethnic group of an older empire (the Broken Empire as the thread title suggests), and is surrounded by smaller hostile nation-states of ethnic groups that were oppressed in the former empire.
Almost no coastline on the map. I want Nationa to feel exposed and under constant threat of land invasion.
Borders to be a mixture of natural boundaries and arbitrary delineations, via treaties.
At least 200 labeled locations on the map. I want this place to feel heavily populated.
Historical elements to the map (like former boundaries and such).
Silly silly names.

On a side note:
Is there a size limitation to these maps?
How do create a thumbnail on a forum post?

05-05-2011, 11:19 AM
I like No.6 on the list, every map needs silly names. The size limits on maps is no more than 32 megapixels, size as in memory varies on what kind of file you are trying to upload it gives you a list with accepted file types and there size when you try to upload. To upload thumbnails, go to edit post - go advanced - manage thumbnails.


05-05-2011, 04:28 PM
Just upload the image, our software automatically generates thumbs. If I were you I'd scale back on the 200 labeled places...labels take a long time to do well and coming up with that many names takes even longer. Solid planning, though.

EDIT: I went and edited your post below to upload the image properly for our wip-scraper to grab your image for the thumbnailer.

05-16-2011, 11:13 AM
Back injury kept me out of chairs for the last week and half. Set me back on this. Research into this was enlightening and helped me get a much better feel of what I want to do.

I came to the conclusion that this map of a nation would represent something meant to be an artistic wall design, probably in the study hall of a king, or royal minister. It will appear as a wood carving and hopefully one that appears done by a master craftsman. The design of the map will be biased. I remember a scene from the King and I where a prince has a map of Siam that is distorted, making Siam appear much larger than it really is. I'd like to replicate that feel.

Also, I feel a national map should have less focus on terrain and more on human landmarks, so I won't have any vegetation displayed on the map, only rudimentary depictions of mountains (if I decided to have any), but I will display rivers, as they play a major role in human trade and as natural boundaries between kingdoms. I think this also goes along with the idea of the map's prejudice, placing on emphasis on the human aspect of the nation.

Here is a nice site that has scans of the first atlas of Europe from 1570: http://www.bl.uk/onlinegallery/ttp/ttpbooks.html

Couple more items to my list.

7. Semi-photo realistic.
8. I want this to look like something a king or royal minister would have on his wall. Very fancy and expensive looking.
9. The design places emphasis on the country as the center of the world, showing nationalistic bias.
10. Focus on national landmarks over terrain

This is my work in progress image so far, at 50% resolution. Area in corners will probably have close up maps or important regions.

### Latest WIP ###

05-16-2011, 11:49 AM
Looks like you're putting a lot of thought into this, which is great!

What software are you using? If you are going label heavy (200 is not a huge amount, you'd be amazed how maps can just eat labels and cry for more) then I'd suggest using something in Vector (e.g. inkscape, AI or the like) to do your labelling rather than PS or Gimp - it will save you a ton of time.

05-16-2011, 06:53 PM
I'm using Photoshop.

Yah, the labeling is a concern of mine. I don't have any vector programs at home. I could use Indesign at work to do it... but I want to do blending effects and layer styles on the text to emboss them. I think I'm stuck doing it in Photoshop.