View Full Version : your map size preference

09-28-2012, 03:49 PM
What size workspace do you generally setup your maps in PS or Gimp? I know there are variables here, so for the sake of discussion lets call these world map setups not DnD adventure scenarios. But feel free to let us know how you like to work cities and adventure maps also.

09-28-2012, 08:29 PM
For state maps on my campaigns I do 11x17".. If its a world map I try to do 20x30 since there standard sizes..

09-29-2012, 11:58 PM
Depends on what I'm working on; if it's for myself I usually consider the projection dimensions plus however much of a border I want to include (which can be quite huge if I'm being artistic), and then decide if it's for print or digital display and how large. But I don't usually confine myself to standard sizes for convenience unless I'm fitting it to a frame I've already built or found. If I'm just doing a rough sketch for later cleanup, I try to work with my screen/PS Workspace resolution so that it fills the space at 12.5/25/50% zoom.

So, um... I guess I don't have a preference. =]

09-30-2012, 11:51 AM
Ruff, This was what I was leaning towards as a starting place for either a small encounter area (8.5 x 11 or 11 x 17) and then the larger 20 x 30 for a world.

Chashio, I know absolutely nothing about projection or how it applies to world creation. I assume this is latitude and longitude lines placed on the map?

Thanks to you both for giving some guidelines. Let me backup a bit and explain what prompted this question. I started the first map as a tear tutorial, follow the instructions map as an exercise to learn PS. This was set up as 1024 x 1024 (tear actually reduced this to 512 x 512) but I found that as I got to the point where I wished to add text or other info it seemed to me to be too small (take into context here I have very limited digital experience) for a viewable map. Schwartz asked me to show a better resolution in the thread which I couldnít do, either because I didnít get PS to save the web jpeg correctly or the image was actually to small to begin with. So my though process here was, OK these things can be either for print or web viewing, the little I picked up reading a book and browsing the guild site was that 288/300 seemed to be the norm for print applications and 72 for web. So lets look at an example here then, say I wish to follow the tear tutorial but use a 20 x 30 world size that would have the option for either web or print. If I set this up in PS I end up with a 9000 x 6000 pixel w/ 300 ppi. If I follow tearís guide of reducing the image by half (for better sharpness/clarify of final image I assume) we end up with a 18,000 x 12,000 image to start with. This seems exceeding large to me but is this how it actually happens for you folks who actually have stuff printed up? Iím trying to get a better handle on software aspect of things here.

09-30-2012, 12:40 PM
Yes I work with all my maps as base of 300 pixels per inch.. It does make for a large map, the reason they are wanting you to drop it in half is due to file size.. They get huge fast, my average 11x17 encounter map is anywhere from 400-800 mb, with large pieces beings 2-6 gb in file size.. If your reducing the image from 9000 x 6000 by half it would be 4500 x 3000 not the other way around.. Again I am only interpreting what you have said.. I have yet to see the tutorial.. Photoshop is a beast to learn, the menu systems are daunting in themselves, but once you learn that portion it becomes easier to pick up techniques.. Hope this helps some..

09-30-2012, 01:12 PM
Projections... http://www.progonos.com/furuti/MapProj/Normal/CartDef/MapDef/mapDef.html#Oblique and the next page on that site... http://www.progonos.com/furuti/MapProj/Normal/CartProp/cartProp.html

You seem to have a good handle on the rest of it. And if you want 9000 x 6000 to finish, according to 50% resize, you'll start with 18,000 x 12,000. It is big. Save often. =) It can be helpful, if your system gets sluggish working at that size, to create a snapshot/flattened file of the current state and then work on the next layer above that, then when you're happy, bring the new layer back into the mother file with all the separate layers or simply save it with a different file name ( Layer 7_Rivers ).

When working on something for print, it helps to work on it real-size so that you don't focus on a little detail at 100% zoom and then figure out that you either can't see it or it looks terrible at print scale (it's rather frustrating). Labels, for instance, can look legible on your screen but downright tiny on paper. I believe there's a PS function that allows you to have two working windows of the same file open, so you can always view the effects on the 'big picture' while making minute adjustments zoomed in to the other, without having to zoom in and out all the time.

09-30-2012, 05:33 PM
Hey Ruff I should have made my finished size more clear, in the example I was looking for a finished piece 9000 x 6000 I would have had to enlarge the pixel size to 18K x 12K and started from there, then reduced 50% to get the 9k x 6k sorry bout the confusion.

Chashio - I'll look into the projection, but not atm, Info overload LOL. That's a little over my skill set atm but I'm definetely interested in learning it. So far so good on the machines resources, not bogging down to much. But I can see where it may give me issues once I really start with mega layers / masking . channels etc , whew!

12-28-2012, 05:58 PM
Remember to uncheck the "compability choice" (unsure what the exact wording is) when you save your file. This will cut some time when you save.

12-29-2012, 10:41 AM
Carnifex I'll take a look at this the next time I save a file. Haven't really done anything over the holidays, family is in town and I've been visitin :)

12-29-2012, 01:10 PM
I'm usually working on an 8.5x11 canvas. It all really depends on what level of detail I'm going for. 8.5x11 can look awful when printed.