View Full Version : Elmsriggen WiP

10-28-2011, 11:18 AM
So I took my experiences from my previous experiments and tried them out in a complete regional map. Workname: The County of Elmsriggen

Major cartographic elements should be done now, some typographical mistakes to be edited (or not... see if you can find them ;)) and all the final work to be done... scale bar, cartouche, coat of arms, border.

Then some aging, colouring... still a lot to be done.


10-28-2011, 01:14 PM
Really like the mood and style. Good job so far ;)

10-28-2011, 01:28 PM
Veeery nice. This is a very good approximation of that good old 16th/17th century style, if you ask me. I especially like the towns, did you do them yourself? Also, the font is perfect. Which one did you use?

The hills and rivers are hand-drawn, right? What program are using?

Also - I claim the village of Obereck in the name of the Lords Overcorner from Neugereuth.

10-28-2011, 05:59 PM
I like the black-on-white look of it already. It will be interesting to see what it might look like with some coloration, too.

10-30-2011, 03:49 PM
I used GIMP for the drawing... every single little pixel drawn by hand (and mouse). I started of with broad river shapes that were selected and stroked... but it didn't just come out as I wanted to. So I traced every river's brink by hand to get it right. Hills and cities are also handdrawn and shaded.

Text was placed in Inkscape with the "Roman Antique" font... but I found that, as I don't use curves or fancy angles, GIMP does the job quite well, if a little more awkward when I need to reposition names.... which I had to do in the version you see posted.

Right now I am trying to draw the cartouches, but I am not quite pleased with the results yet. I am trying to reproduce the crosshatching technique that is used for shading in engravings... and it seems I must do that by hand also.

10-30-2011, 05:19 PM
That's pretty awesome handwork. I especially like the wavy pattern filling the rivers.

10-31-2011, 02:59 AM
Freodin, kudos. :)

Now I'm even more interested to see how this turns out!

Steel General
10-31-2011, 06:35 AM
Coming along quite nicely.

10-31-2011, 08:12 PM
I used GIMP for the drawing... every single little pixel drawn by hand (and mouse).

That's just, wow! It appears every city icon, and even every tree was drawn separately.... No stamping/cloning?!

And can I interpret your comment to mean no tablet either? If so... wow!

-Rob A>

11-01-2011, 01:19 AM
That really is amazing.

11-01-2011, 01:49 AM

11-01-2011, 04:37 AM
Absolutely superb!!!!

11-01-2011, 05:57 PM
Almost done now. Perhaps a few additions to the "empty" areas outsite of the border. Also I am trying some different aging effects. And, last but not least, a coloured version.

But for now I am rather pleased with myself, if I may say so. ;)


11-01-2011, 06:06 PM
You should be quite pleased with yourself..that is a wonderful map.

11-01-2011, 07:58 PM
The river system looks incredibly realistic; I don't think I've ever seen a map in this style that has made such extensive use of rivers, but the overall effect is quite impressive!


11-02-2011, 03:03 AM
The river system looks incredibly realistic; I don't think I've ever seen a map in this style that has made such extensive use of rivers, but the overall effect is quite impressive!

In this regard I have to admit that I kind of cheated. This IS a realistic river system... the area of the confluence of Moselle and Rhine. I wanted to have a map where I could try out methods of drawing and styles, without having to worry about the geographic layout. I used several maps of the Archbishopric Trier from the 16th and 17th century as basis, and these indeed had this complex river system.
In my map, it comes as close to the originals as manual copying can get.

I admit that I shamelessly copied styles from a huge number of different sources - mostly from the excellent Blaeu maps... but that was my main intent with this map: to find out how to do this particular style. I said here before... I am more of a technician than an artist.

With many of the maps presented here in this forum - after the wide-eyed wonder at their sheer beauty - I sit back and consider: how was that done? And, more important, how would that be done when it wasn't done on a computer?
Many styles are taken from real world art... even made in real world and only finished on the computer. Pencil and ink and paints. But each of these maps would be an unique piece of art. Maps like yours, arsheesh, would take ages for a painter to produce... and if you needed a copy, you would have to do all of it again.

I did that before. When I started to draw the maps for my fictional world - pen and paper - I copied them by hand, each time I needed a new historical version. I still own about twenty of these old DIN A3 maps, and I tried to adopt them on my PC exactly so that I didn't have to do it again... and again... and again.

Printing and the techniques developed for printing solved that problem for the olden cartographers. Yet in order for a virtual map to look engraved, I found that I had to use the same techniques that were used in the originals. You can not copy, clone or brush with an engraving tool. Each line, each element has to be drawn by hand.

This I tried to do, and to find some good algorithmical approximations where I was to lazy for that. In the Elmsriggen map, I used paths to get the smooth shape for the cartouche. I used a jittered stroke for the boxed borders. I created a fill pattern for the border's ornamentation. (Some tweaking here still to be done.)

All in all, I think I got the style quite well.

11-02-2011, 04:46 AM
Freodin, this is a really good map :) ... also, I think I was at this here confluence back in August. I feel like you've nailed the 16th century map style pretty much perfectly. If you're going to add colour, I can't wait to see.

Thanks for the info on the cartouches and borders. I usually use illustrator for vectors and I always stumble about when I have to use them in photoshop. A fill pattern for a cartouche, eh? I'm gonna give this a whirl.


11-02-2011, 05:41 AM
Awesome map! There is a cut-off city label in the south between Veldenstein and Pastersheim.

11-02-2011, 06:38 AM
39619 39620

I think that's it. I corrected any mistake I found, added a little forest here and there... and of course did a coloured version.

So, what do you think? Anything I should change?

11-02-2011, 06:47 AM
Beautiful map, Freodin. :)

I prefer the b/w map though, mainly because for me the watery ink effect on the coloured one looks a little too digital for my taste.

11-02-2011, 07:00 AM
The blue on the coloured map seems a little bit too strong, but otherwise fantastic.

11-02-2011, 07:57 AM
hehe... I love the blue color actually - but I'd like to see the others a bit more ligthened and "watered out". Great work, consider yourself repped :)

11-02-2011, 08:38 PM
I think I have a slight preference for the monochrome map, but the tinted version also looks good to me. Well done!

11-02-2011, 09:44 PM
Really beautiful work, Freodin. Is there a reason Leufting is not colored in, there in the southeast corner?

Ha - I had been going to reply to arsheesh that I had seen similar river networks.... but all in 16th - 17th century maps ! You've carried out the style masterfully - well done!

11-05-2011, 03:22 AM
Also Warumich, right in the middle. The people of Warumich demand the right to be white! Coloured ain't good enough for them. :o

On the other hand, it might be a joke, since Warumich translates as "Why Me?"

Beautiful. But I've already said that. :)

06-06-2012, 11:19 AM
Beautiful! I'm speechless. :) You truly captured the style you were trying to emulate. Great job on hand-drawing everything, I love the end-result. Though I have to say that I agree with the others that the color version doesn't look that convincing - at least when you look at it too closely ;) I would love to see more maps by you in this style! :D

06-06-2012, 07:24 PM
I like very much this map. The old style is really very well made. The rivers and cities the best icons. Congratulations.

06-07-2012, 03:29 AM
Regarding the colour: I have to admit that I am out of my depths here.

Any advice on how to do it better?