View Full Version : March/April Lite Challenge Entry - Bridges Over Troubled Air

04-09-2012, 02:36 PM
Not sure if I'm doing this right. It's my first time participating in one of the challenges, and I'm not sure if I'm tagging the image properly.

### Latest WIP ###

I'm going to continue tweaking this one up until the deadline. I need to add some way of getting to the map, like a magical portal or a trapdoor that would (supposedly) come up the stone column from within. Hey, it's magic!

04-09-2012, 02:37 PM
Yep, that's spot on. You can see that your image now shows up in the image thumbs. Great idea for the challenge!

04-09-2012, 02:41 PM
Excellent! I'm glad that worked. I'm pretty happy with it so far. It's a mixture of Illustrator (to get the extrusion) and Photoshop with liberal use of stock photos and custom brushes.

04-09-2012, 03:05 PM
Oh, that's fun. Awesome. I was toying with the idea of islands sticking up above a sea of clouds, but I couldn't get the bridges to work out at all. These are really nice -- drawn in Illustrator?

04-09-2012, 03:14 PM
I only used Illustrator to do the original extrusion. It's quicker than working in a dedicated 3D renderer, even if it takes a little longer to tweak. I wouldn't use it for any high-end 3D work, but for something like this, it was quick and easy.

Here's the extrusion I started with:


The rest is all Photoshop.

04-09-2012, 03:22 PM
Realized that if I'm going to make any more changes to this, I'm going to have to have them done by tomorrow. I guess that means I'll be up late tonight after game night. We're playing Scales of War D&D4e. Some nice battle maps in that set.

04-09-2012, 08:56 PM
Excellent concept, great work. My only constructive criticism is that there is something about the pattens and the grid in the green grass that gives it the illusion of being partly transparent or ethereal. Maybe make the grid lines a little more defined?

04-09-2012, 09:36 PM
I like it. It has that Kung Fu Training feel to it. I noticed the shadows of the posts aren't parallel with each other, but that can change due to terrain levels. Anyway, great concept and good work so far. :D

04-10-2012, 12:11 AM
Yeah, I freehanded the post shadows in, but everything is on its own layer, so I can fix them. Might work on that tomorrow. Game night lasted longer than I expected.

04-10-2012, 01:30 AM
Showed the eight thumbnails to my wife. She said, "Hey, I really like that one!" it was mine. What a great feeling.

I built this map at 2000 x 2000. Is that a good size to work at?

04-10-2012, 01:37 AM
Excellent concept, great work. My only constructive criticism is that there is something about the pattens and the grid in the green grass that gives it the illusion of being partly transparent or ethereal. Maybe make the grid lines a little more defined?

Thanks for the crit, Bogie. Yeah, when I showed this to my game group, printed out at playable size, most of them missed the grid. I also need to make it clearer how many grid squares the bridges take up. it's about three boards per suare, but it's not exact. The whole map is ~21x21 squares.

04-10-2012, 02:16 AM
That is a decent size. For higher resolutions you can always start your project at a DPI of 300 with that resolution. I usually start mine at 1920x1920 at 300 DPI. That way I can increase the resolution and still keep the clean details, and be able to print large format if I want to. Also saves on ram while working, so it is a win win. :D

04-11-2012, 09:37 AM
Probably not going to have time to work on this any more, at least for this challenge. If I get time, I'll lighten up those grid lines. I had hoped to add some guide ropes for the bridges, but that's not going to happen. Too busy at work, which is where I get most of my mapping in.

04-11-2012, 10:23 AM
I love the background and the clouds but maybe the grids also make the grass bleary when they should be sharper? The land 'supporting' the grass has some nice 'wooden' texture when zoomed in but the bridges don't look as sharp? The bridges look great when zoomed out.

04-12-2012, 05:26 AM
Oh, this is just lovely! And just while I was walking the dog today, I was thinking to myself, "I should do a 'Bridge over Troubled Water' map ... hmmm."

04-13-2012, 10:33 AM
Thanks, Lukc. That means a lot coming from someone of your talent. I was inspired by the one-point perspective on your last challenge map (the B&W challenge). As soon as I saw the ink blot, I knew what I wanted to do, and I knew it had to have an extreme one-point perspective to it.

I didn't revise this map because I thought I'd missed the deadline. Now it looks like the voting has been postponed for some reason. Hrm. Maybe I'll get a few minutes free today to work in some revisions.

04-13-2012, 10:35 AM
Fury, the bridges probably don't look as sharp close up because I built them at one size and then stretched them to match the contours of the platforms. I should have made them Smart Objects, but I forgot too. It's a learning opportunity for me. I normally use Smart Objects for all my bitmapped layers.

04-16-2012, 12:24 AM
I want to know how to make a smart object.

I really like the viewpoint of your piece. Looks great!!