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View Full Version : The Nation of Xamel, on the continent of Demetia



wisemoon
06-11-2012, 06:38 AM
45544

This is my very first finished map using graphic design software (Gimp). The Xamel map is based on a hand-drawn map of Demetia I drew when I was a teenager (about 30 years ago now). At various times I have looked at this hand-drawn map, wondering what to do with it. A couple of years ago, my gaming group wanted to try out D&D 4th edition, and I thought my long-abandoned Demetia was the perfect setting. So I dusted off the map and decided to try making something a bit more polished.

As it stands now, the nation of Xamel was founded by dragonborn (a draconic D&D race), who escaped from slavery when an ancient dragon empire was disintegrating. Secretive and isolationist, the Xameli guard their mountain border jealously and aside from a few trade agreements, not many non-dragonborn are accepted across the border.

I used RobA's great tutorial, "Using Gimp to Create an Artistic Regional RPG Map" to create this map. I also used Arsheesh's "Photorealistic Trees in Gimp" tutorial for the forests. I used a Draconic translator to come up with place names for the map. For the compass rose, I traced the four-point star from a clip-art compass rose I found on the Internet, and then used the "Beaten Gold Effect in Photoshop" tutorial on this site (it didn't have an author's name in the PDF, I don't recall who created the tutorial). I took the gold star, added an "N" to it in Gimp, then copy-pasted it into my map file. For the borders, I used Arsheesh's "Map Borders in Gimp" tutorial.

I started the WIP thread for this map in 2010, then decided to go back to school part-time (career change), so the map got put aside for a couple of years. I guess that's why I didn't get too much feedback. I got laid off a few months ago, so I had more time, and decided to finish this up and polish it.

Here is the link to the WIP thread. http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?10647-WIP-Xamel-region-of-Demetia-(continent)

Freodin
06-11-2012, 10:22 AM
There is a number of things I would have done differently in this map, but all in all, it has worked out to become a very stylish map.

wisemoon
06-11-2012, 06:34 PM
Thanks! I appreciate the comment. :)

wisemoon

arsheesh
06-11-2012, 07:51 PM
Hey there Wisemoon, congrats on finishing this, and for updating RobA's much beloved tutorial in pdf format, I know that will be of help to folks. Hm, in your description you say that you made use of my photorealistic trees tut, but I gotta say, those forests look much more like the original ones from Rob's tutorial rather than the method I outline. Was this perhaps a typo?

Cheers,
-Arsheesh

wisemoon
06-12-2012, 01:09 PM
Hey Arsheesh! No, I used your methods exactly. I was following your PDF tutorial and wrote in your steps pretty much exactly. I just named the layers differently. I don't know why they would look different. Either method works, I just included your method because RobA recommended it.

wisemoon

Larb
06-12-2012, 04:20 PM
It's always nice to remake old maps and locations. I'm currently in the process of doing it myself. I think your map is great though I might have used black for the main place name text colour (the brown sort of seems to mix with the overall brownish palette). I've not used any GIMP tutorials myself so I couldn't comment on anything there though I probably should at some point so as to pick up some basic proficiency with it.

arsheesh
06-12-2012, 06:17 PM
Hey Arsheesh! No, I used your methods exactly. I was following your PDF tutorial and wrote in your steps pretty much exactly. I just named the layers differently. I don't know why they would look different. Either method works, I just included your method because RobA recommended it.

wisemoon

Which version of the tutorial were you working with? I've recently uploaded a newer version. If you were following the older version then you would have run into the problem I mentioned. You see, there was a typo in it: I originally said to set the layer mode of all the Tree Color layers to "Soft Light" (or Overlay, I don't know which since I've since deleted the original tutorial from my files). However, I meant for the layer mode of the middle green color to be set to "Multiply". At any rate, I mention it only because this helps to hide some of the "bevel" of the forests and also makes them more lush looking.

Cheers,
-Arsheesh