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Scipio
03-21-2012, 07:45 PM
Hi, everyone, this is a map of a region of a world I am creating. As you can see, it's more of a simple schematic atm, but I have begun to draw some of the coastline (including getting a bit carried away on the fjords to the North). Basically everything except the black coastline is obviously just a placeholder to get a feel of how the land is situated to other things such as tundra and desert, separated by a very large inland sea to the east. To the west, an ocean across which lies the elven lands. Or something like that. So far, I've already devised a number of sub-regions, including the southwest area playing home to a once great power (a la Roman Empire) but now religious protectorate (almost sounds like the Vatican, doesn't it?). This faction has been conspiring with the elves across the way to commit X not-yet-determined nefarious act. The Nords (also having had their heyday earlier in history) predictably do the igloo thing in the snow. In between lies the main kingdom, which has come to prominence only recently, and whose sub-regions represent various nations of medieval Europe. To the northwest there will be a magical island of fairies and leprechauns- I'm only half kidding there. To the far south, a kind of pirate confederation rules the sea. You could say I've taken the Europe metaphor pretty far, but I'd like to hide that if at all possible.

http://www.cartographersguild.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=43288&d=1332373006

Oh yeah, I guess I should clarify that the full image will be 12" by 12". The brown and grey are meant to indicate elevation, and blue means water, green means forest, etc. The yellow-green is a swamp, and the lighter brown spots in the mountains are passes. This is my first time attempting a large map, and I'm just doing it for kicks and giggles really. So give me feedback on my ideas, and I guess in terms of the map itself you could critique the shape of the continent or the placement of forests or something. I guess it's a bit silly to ask for feedback this early on, but hey, the more advice I get now, the less I have to change after I'm supposedly done. XD

P.S. my photoshop is broken and text doesn't show up at all, no matter what I change the size or color to. Obviously labels will be necessary at some point, so does anyone have any suggestions?

octopod
03-22-2012, 12:18 AM
Some kind of scale would be nice, maybe, to make it easier to think about whether this all makes sense. Also this is a screen-breakingly large image. (oO_Oo)

It looks pretty cool, although I'm having difficulty trying to figure out the tectonic situation here. Is the dark brown the highest mountain ridge on the map, and the brown and grey respectively lower elevation contours, or do brown and grey indicate different heights of mountain ridges, or what? I like the inland sea as well, been playing with that idea myself lately..

As to labels: maybe import it into GIMP (or Illustrator if you have it) once you're done with the art and add the labels there?

Scipio
03-22-2012, 12:43 AM
Some kind of scale would be nice, maybe, to make it easier to think about whether this all makes sense. Also this is a screen-breakingly large image. (oO_Oo)

It looks pretty cool, although I'm having difficulty trying to figure out the tectonic situation here. Is the dark brown the highest mountain ridge on the map, and the brown and grey respectively lower elevation contours, or do brown and grey indicate different heights of mountain ridges, or what? I like the inland sea as well, been playing with that idea myself lately..

As to labels: maybe import it into GIMP (or Illustrator if you have it) once you're done with the art and add the labels there?

Ah yes... I had forgotten about scale. Well, to be completely honest I'm not quite decided. I think I'm looking at a planet significantly smaller than Earth (maybe around 60% its size), and I suppose assuming the same atmospheric circulation as Earth, this would have to stretch from about the subtropical high to near the polar high (~25 to 75 degrees North).

In regards to tectonics, I have to admit that is one factor I haven't factored in, consciously at least. I'm not sure how many plates would be involved given the number of mountains and the fact that this is basically one continent. The brown was supposed to represent any kind of significant hills, whereas the grey and white were supposed to indicate something more on the order of mountains, including a few specific peaks. I kinda rushed putting this out because I wanted to post something before dinner, haha... I wish I could make it a bit clearer, but it's probably not worth investing much more time in something that's more of a placeholder than anything else, lol. Basically there's going to be a long mountain chain along the west side of the continent, which I guess could be explained by the subduction of an oceanic plate, but I'm not sure how to justify the spiraling motion farther south. Hmmm... maybe something with a hot spot or volcano? I'm also going to have a couple of other mountain chains as indicated by the crude, greyish-brown lines (serving to separate the middle realm from the desert and sea in the south, and from the tundra in the north). So far I'm thinking most of the coastal mountains will merely be large hills, and only a few of them will have well-defined peaks, whereas the north and south mountain chains will probably be a bit steeper.

And sorry about the size of the image- the final one will be bigger, but I don't meant to be breaking everyone's screen, lol. Thanks for the label suggestion too.

octopod
03-22-2012, 12:58 AM
If you have big mountains on both the east and west of the central realm, you're setting that realm up to be like the Central Valley or the Turpan Basin -- hot, dry, watered by mountain runoff, agriculturally productive? That's pretty cool, I like it, but you'll want to have those rivers flowing south into that bay at the bottom, I think, which will involve removing part of that string of hills down there.

Now knowing that the grey means high mountains, I might connect the grey ridge actually -- erase the bit of it on the southern shore of the inland sea, then attach the northern part with a line going straight north-south across the isthmus to the mountains on the left coast of the southern landmass. Then you could handwave the tectonics by saying that your central realm is a microplate (like Tarim, again!) that's getting squished between the plate containing the southern continent and the inland sea on the bottom + right and the ocean plate on the left, with fairly neutral relations with the plate in the north.

ETA: wheeee, I scribbled on it in crayon
43291
(little S-shaped twiddles indicate arc volcanism; also notice I did the things I described in my second paragraph)

Scipio
03-22-2012, 02:06 AM
If you have big mountains on both the east and west of the central realm, you're setting that realm up to be like the Central Valley or the Turpan Basin -- hot, dry, watered by mountain runoff, agriculturally productive? That's pretty cool, I like it, but you'll want to have those rivers flowing south into that bay at the bottom, I think, which will involve removing part of that string of hills down there.

Now knowing that the grey means high mountains, I might connect the grey ridge actually -- erase the bit of it on the southern shore of the inland sea, then attach the northern part with a line going straight north-south across the isthmus to the mountains on the left coast of the southern landmass. Then you could handwave the tectonics by saying that your central realm is a microplate (like Tarim, again!) that's getting squished between the plate containing the southern continent and the inland sea on the bottom + right and the ocean plate on the left, with fairly neutral relations with the plate in the north.

ETA: wheeee, I scribbled on it in crayon
43291
(little S-shaped twiddles indicate arc volcanism; also notice I did the things I described in my second paragraph)

Wow, thanks for the help! I wasn't exactly thinking central valley style, though... more kinda like a C-shape chain of mountains separating the main basin (facing the inland sea) from the tundra in the north, sea to the west, and the desert in the south. Now that I think about it the confusion probably arose from the fact that I used grey lines for imprecise indications of unfinished coastline around the inland sea and desert region. So there wasn't supposed to be a grey ridge. Silly me (using grey for both coastline and high elevation didn't confuse me at the time since I had it all in my head, but the stupidity is obvious now, haha). Hmmm... since you mention it though, maybe the valley makes more sense... I really like the microplate idea, and I did envision having a natural gateway mountain pass into the desert...

I was also concerned about my placement of forests though. I guess it makes sense to have the small forests along the west coast, but then at the same time the two major forests could only be formed from air currents rising off from the inland sea. Perhaps that is unrealistic, though...

Once again, thanks a lot. Sorry for the confusion, but this is all very helpful. It may well be that how you interpreted my plans is actually more feasible than what I envisioned.

octopod
03-22-2012, 12:54 PM
Working with this map, in retrospect, if you rotate the sense of motion in the lower of the two purple ocean plates by 90 degrees clockwise and that of the yellow plate about 45 degrees counterclockwise, you can have that bay in the south opening as a rift like the Gulf of California.

But if that's not a mountain range, it's quite different! Sorry for misunderstanding. I'll have to think about this...

Scipio
03-22-2012, 11:55 PM
No problem. It was completely my fault, haha... there's a basic but valuable lesson for me to learn from the confusion, lol.

octopod
03-23-2012, 12:05 PM
I'd love to see the next version of it, though, and see which of those schemes you end up going with!

If you're going to go with the one-sided mountain range thing, though, you might just want to have three plates -- the one in the north, the ocean one, and then a giant one containing the other two continents and starting to split apart where that bay is. I really do like the Gulf of California idea, still. Like this? (Now I've marked dark grey for inactive and red for active Cascades-style arc volcanism.)
43326

Lukc
03-23-2012, 12:32 PM
Hey, if you haven't come up with a name for the region yet, here's a few names for you, in a few fakey styles:

1) Region: Ta Zapadön (Tah Zah-PAHD-uhn). Subregions: Ocean: Padais (PAHD-ice), Large lake: Ta Völka (Tah VUHL-kah), Small lake: Ta Malka (Tah MAHL-kah), Main mountain range: U Nebogor (oo NEH-boh-gohr), SW range: U Robön (oo ROB-uhn), NW range: U Ledön (oo LED-uhn), N range: Za Poledön (zah Poh-LED-uhn). The Great Gulf: Tau Medejel (Taw Meh-DEH-jel). The middle kingdoms: U Sredin (oo SREH-deen), the kingdom by the gulf: Spodön op Medejel (SPOH-duhn ohp Meh-DEH-jel), the SE region: Na Iuga (Nah YOU-gah), the NE region: Na Sevru (Nah SEHV-roo). The eastern sea: Ta Dvigais (Tah DVEE-guys).

Alternate:

2) Region: Zhar Belkh. Subregions: Ocean: Krakhotha, Large lake: Golbotha, Small lake: Zalbotha, Main mountain range: Shpirath Thund, SW range: Krotha Thund, NW range: Gawhrim Shol, N range: Besskad Shol. The Great Gulf: Sorokothim. The middle kingdoms: Belkhombor, the kingdom by the gulf: Sornombath, the SE region: Rakhul var Belkh, the NE region: Ashtramor. The eastern sea: Oliyotha.


2) Region: Tayarango. Subregions: Ocean: Sikura Malvento, Large lake: Visto Porando, Small lake: Alasto Korengo, Main mountain range: Onda Rotala, SW range: Perondaka Simera, NW range: Karonda Agula, N range: Karonda Murdala. The Great Gulf: Kalo Fondo. The middle kingdoms: Keteya Belimasa, the kingdom by the gulf: Keteya Kalosula, the SE region: Ulsaranda, the NE region: Vitrusango. The eastern sea: Kura Sensata.

That should keep you in silly names :)

Scipio
03-23-2012, 01:22 PM
Hey, if you haven't come up with a name for the region yet, here's a few names for you, in a few fakey styles:

1) Region: Ta Zapadön (Tah Zah-PAHD-uhn). Subregions: Ocean: Padais (PAHD-ice), Large lake: Ta Völka (Tah VUHL-kah), Small lake: Ta Malka (Tah MAHL-kah), Main mountain range: U Nebogor (oo NEH-boh-gohr), SW range: U Robön (oo ROB-uhn), NW range: U Ledön (oo LED-uhn), N range: Za Poledön (zah Poh-LED-uhn). The Great Gulf: Tau Medejel (Taw Meh-DEH-jel). The middle kingdoms: U Sredin (oo SREH-deen), the kingdom by the gulf: Spodön op Medejel (SPOH-duhn ohp Meh-DEH-jel), the SE region: Na Iuga (Nah YOU-gah), the NE region: Na Sevru (Nah SEHV-roo). The eastern sea: Ta Dvigais (Tah DVEE-guys).

Alternate:

2) Region: Zhar Belkh. Subregions: Ocean: Krakhotha, Large lake: Golbotha, Small lake: Zalbotha, Main mountain range: Shpirath Thund, SW range: Krotha Thund, NW range: Gawhrim Shol, N range: Besskad Shol. The Great Gulf: Sorokothim. The middle kingdoms: Belkhombor, the kingdom by the gulf: Sornombath, the SE region: Rakhul var Belkh, the NE region: Ashtramor. The eastern sea: Oliyotha.


2) Region: Tayarango. Subregions: Ocean: Sikura Malvento, Large lake: Visto Porando, Small lake: Alasto Korengo, Main mountain range: Onda Rotala, SW range: Perondaka Simera, NW range: Karonda Agula, N range: Karonda Murdala. The Great Gulf: Kalo Fondo. The middle kingdoms: Keteya Belimasa, the kingdom by the gulf: Keteya Kalosula, the SE region: Ulsaranda, the NE region: Vitrusango. The eastern sea: Kura Sensata.

That should keep you in silly names :)

Wow, thanks! I really appreciate it! Are you a Star Wars fan by any chance? I think I detect some of that, lol. I could be wrong though. I have a name for some of the geographical sub-regions (mostly Latinate), but not for any of the individual kingdoms, or for the continent as a whole, so these should come in handy! I also may use some of the alternate names for places on different continents, once I'm done with this one.

Scipio
03-23-2012, 01:28 PM
I'd love to see the next version of it, though, and see which of those schemes you end up going with!

If you're going to go with the one-sided mountain range thing, though, you might just want to have three plates -- the one in the north, the ocean one, and then a giant one containing the other two continents and starting to split apart where that bay is. I really do like the Gulf of California idea, still. Like this? (Now I've marked dark grey for inactive and red for active Cascades-style arc volcanism.)
43326

Yeah, I'm going to try to get something out tonight or tomorrow; I've been busy the last couple days preparing for a couple of job interviews though, so I don't have anything quite yet. By gulf of California you mean the divergent boundary forming the bay in the south, correct? Sounds good to me. If I'm going along with that, would it make more sense to have there be mountains stretching along the northern shore of the southern gulf from the desert isthmus west to the coastal mountains, or would it be better just to leave that as lowlands and potentially its own watershed? Hopefully that makes sense, haha...

Lukc
03-24-2012, 03:01 AM
Wow, thanks! I really appreciate it! Are you a Star Wars fan by any chance? I think I detect some of that, lol. I could be wrong though. I have a name for some of the geographical sub-regions (mostly Latinate), but not for any of the individual kingdoms, or for the continent as a whole, so these should come in handy! I also may use some of the alternate names for places on different continents, once I'm done with this one.

:) Go for it, I'm glad if it helps! I don't know if there's much Star Wars, I tend to just imagine some basic phonemes for a language and string them together. Then, sometimes, I make a bit of a joke of it and add roots from a language I might (vaguelly) know and get fantasy names that way. For the first one I used roots from my language (which is why I also took the trouble of writing a vague phonetic pronounciation :P), the second I just went for gutturals while trying to avoid making it sound Arabic, and the last one is quite obviously partly derived from an alternate spelling of Italian.