View Full Version : Overly Ambitious Newbie Project!

12-12-2011, 02:45 PM
I joined a fairly long time ago, just because I love looking at all the amazing maps you guys have made and snatching some of them for use in D&D, pathfinder, etc. I've always liked creating maps, especially overland maps, but I'm what one would call artistically challenged. I've toyed around before with maps on gimp and photoshop but they usually end up more of just reference points as opposed to real artistic maps. I have next to no experience in the type of maps you guys can churn out on a regular basis, but who cares let's shoot for the stars and maybe hit the moon.

I've always had a dream of creating an intricate map, something on the level of mid sized regional map, except for an entire world map. Something you could sprawl out on a table that has the kind of detail to show roads, small towns and less massive points of interest, but covers an entire campaign world. I'm just going to see how using http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?1142-Award-Winner-Using-GIMP-to-Create-an-Artistic-Regional-RPG-Map to make a trial regional map and go from there. I might see if I can just make a colossal map in that same style, or if I have to make smaller regional maps and puzzle piece them together.

This is an absurdly over the top project for someone with next to no experience with this, but I've always wanted to try and maybe I'll get one or two good maps out of it. If I don't make this thread to update and show progress then I'm never going to end up doing it or getting better at mapping like I've always wanted to so even though this might seem asinine I'm just going to go for it. Hopefully I'll start posting my first bits of progress in the next few days and it'll go from there. Here we go!

12-12-2011, 02:50 PM
well good luck waddleman, we look forward to seeing the thread grow :)

12-13-2011, 12:32 AM
Hey - welcome, waddleman! It's not an insane project - it's just an elephant. And you know how one eats an elephant, right? One bite at a time. We look forward to seeing your progress!

12-13-2011, 08:18 PM
OK so plodding my way through the tutorial I've managed to get this. I like how it looks for the most part, though I'd like a way to make the dirt on the main land area look a little less patchy. Still, the coast looks amazing and I have no idea how I even managed to get this far in like, a day. Well, day 1's progress. If this turns out as well as it's looking right now I might actually use it. 40615

12-13-2011, 08:37 PM
Just a newb myself here at the guild. I like what you've done so far. I did not read the tutorial you are working from, but I recommend you lose the white highlights from the shoreline. Seems to detract from the otherwise clean look of the map. Still, great work for one day!

12-16-2011, 12:03 PM
Yeah it was more for a shoreline feel, but it needs a little darker shade of blue, I'll tweak it after I'm done adding in some mountains. Also, a bit more progress, added in a mountain range (might throw in some more) that I think turned out fairly well though adding snow to it didn't really work out. I'm getting through some trees that didn't turn out as large as I've wanted, but I'm learning and really just trying to actually finish a map regardless of if it's really great or not.


03-23-2012, 12:36 PM
Well, gave up on this style as it wasn't really what I was going for anyway, and found another tutorial. I'm just putting the names on everything and it should be finished. For a first finished map I think it's alright, but any suggestions/criticism would be great. 43328

03-24-2012, 03:10 AM
The rivers aren't being naughty or anything so that's good. I think it's a fine finished first map.

Now, a suggestion or two:

1) try using a parchment texture overlay instead of a cloud texture. It might look better on "ye olde fantasy mape".

2) be careful when using obviously different map element sources - the settlements, mountains and forests all "clash" slightly. The settlements are far more detailed than the mountains, for example. Just something to keep in mind for the next map ;).

3) think about how rivers get thinner closer to their headwaters.

4) think about river valleys in the mountains (possibly not necessary for such an abstract map).

03-24-2012, 07:30 PM
Lukc's advise is sound . Composition has always been my biggest obstacle. Take it slow, experiment , don't be discouraged by first efforts. There is much to learn ! All of us here are still learning Even the "Masters". These are much better First efforts than my own . Honestly !! Keep plugging away.