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Avulsion
02-13-2008, 06:00 PM
This is an unfinished map that I want to eventually use in a D&D campaign. I'm using Paint right now, but I might transfer this over to GIMP if y'all think that would be a good idea. Or maybe it would be better to finish it in Paint and call it good.

Anyway, this is similar to my Olbia Region map (and I'm sorry if I should have put both in one thread... I don't know whether I'm hogging the Regional/World Mapping forum or not).

Some ideas I have for upgrading this map is first to use GIMP to blur it. Maybe then it wouldn't look so digital and MSPaintish? Also, is it better to use the bold arial font or the normal arial font for place names? I didn't want to use any fancy fonts because they might be harder to read. Should I separate geographical and political and make a map for each? Or is it cooler/simpler/easier to keep them together? Thanks for the advice!

Edit: If you saw my Olbia Region map, and if you see a difference in technique or quality with this map, please inform me.

landorl
02-14-2008, 07:30 PM
I like this one even better than your other one. I think that you are making the most of Paint and getting as good of an output as possible from there.

With that said, I would advise trying GIMP or Photoshop. I haven't used GIMP, but if it has any kind of brush tools, I think that you would be better off with that. Plus, you can work with layers and use blurs and other nifty effects like transparencies. I would download it and give it a try!

RobA
02-14-2008, 10:56 PM
I keep saying the tool doesn't matter... these are great!

I have to ask (and dread the answer :) )... are you using a tablet or just a mouse?

-Rob A>

pyrandon
02-14-2008, 11:27 PM
This is a good map! I especially like your rivers: very authentic and believable. They add a lot of life to your map!

I agree with both RobA and landorl: the tool doesn't matter to a great extent, and you are proving your ability by using such a simple program as Paint to such a wonderfully high degree. BUT, when I look at these I think to myself: just thank if this artist was using a program with more power, like GIMP!! What heights he could achieve! You are trying to get to work on a tricycle vs. a car right now, I think. For example, you asked about political maps vs. geographical: with the layers in GIMP you could use the same map to do both. And the "digital" effect you are finding an issue would easily be removed in GIMP. I say definitely get GIMP--it's free, we have great tutorials here on it, and I think you will ultimately love using it!

Your fonts are fine, I think, or perhaps a bit too plain. I understand what you mean about readability, but I would go just an inch further than Arial. (And here's a thread (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?t=743&highlight=font+library) that gives suggestions & examples of fonts.)

You're doing great, and I can't wait to see this updated!!!

Avulsion
02-16-2008, 06:32 PM
I have to ask (and dread the answer :) )... are you using a tablet or just a mouse?
-Rob A>

A mouse. I don't have any experience using a tablet. Are they very useful?

Thanks for all the friendly advice and criticism. I'm actually surprised to get a positive welcome here at cartographersguild. I'll install GIMP on my wife's computer and go from there (it's newer and has a bigger monitor... mine is only 14").

pyrandon
02-16-2008, 10:03 PM
I HIGHLY reccomend a tablet, Avulsion. After about 6 months of using a mouse for maps I bought the cheapest Wacom on the market (about $75) and I have never for one second regretted the decision (and I'm a mere hobbyist here, so it's a luxury to me). Your mapmapking and your enjoyment of mapmaking will shoot through the roof--no exaggeration!

I'm glad you got a good reception here at the Guild. This is the only forum in which I am truly an active member, and when I join others I realize what you are basically saying: we are a friendly, helpful, welcoming community. (I think you are a perfect addition, by the way! So keep that up too :)

Midgardsormr
02-16-2008, 10:44 PM
A mouse. I don't have any experience using a tablet. Are they very useful?

Holy moly! It didn't even occur to me to wonder if you were using a tablet--I didn't think someone could get that kind of result in Paint without one.


Thanks for all the friendly advice and criticism. I'm actually surprised to get a positive welcome here at cartographersguild.

Yes, it's a very positive community, yet it's not a mutual admiration society. I hope we can continue to keep the level of professionalism high as the user base grows.

Anyway, I am looking forward to your future projects!