View Full Version : Handdrawn maps project: Westeros

10-02-2012, 03:52 PM
Hi everyone!

Introducing my new project: in order to practice my pen-and-ink drawing, I decided to map the whole of Westeros (from A Song of Ice and Fire, by G.R.R. Martin) at 1mm:2miles scale, on A3 (297mmx420mm) sheets. That's a total of 15 maps (!), I don't know if I'll be able/have the motivation to see it to the end, but I'll try!

Here's my planned cut (thanks Tear for the basemap (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?6683-Westeros-a-fan-project)...):


And the beginning of my work on the first map (going north to south for now: Beyond the Wall):


My plan is to use a style " la" Karen Fonstad, as the Gondor map (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?19982-Two-handdrawn-maps-Welg-and-Gondor) I reproduced some time ago.

I'll have to find a way to scan A3 sheets though, there is a bit of distortion at the center where I joined the two halves of the map...

I'll post my progress from time to time (I hope regularly... but being in the middle of a P.H.D., that's not guaranteed), feel free to comment and especially to give some advice, since the main goal of the adventure is to practice and improve myself...

10-02-2012, 04:04 PM
Wow, that is an epic project! Good luck :)

10-02-2012, 04:59 PM
A fascinating project, and I see you're planning on using Karen Wynn Fonstad's mountains from the Atlas of Middle Earth. I love that book. It helped start my mapping, too! :)

10-02-2012, 05:46 PM
Looks like a worthwhile project. Look forward to seeing it progress.


11-21-2012, 04:31 PM
Hi everyone!

It's been quite a long time since the first sketch of the map... But it is now done! I present to you: Beyond the Wall.


As always, don't hesitate to post comments, this is a training project, so ANY type of feedback is important: what you find good, bad, not so great, any advice, etc.

The next map should be smaller, since I'll be mapping the area just west of this one: Skagos. And I'll be applying the feedback from you guys. Hopefully in 15 maps the style will be decent (and production time faster).

11-21-2012, 05:24 PM
Wow! That is fantastic work Eochaid. I really like the way you did the mountain contours. Have some rep!


Commander Freddy
11-22-2012, 03:35 AM
This project is momentous and you're doing incredibly so far! All the best for the other 14 maps, and I hope they turn out as great as this one!

11-26-2012, 05:10 AM
An impressive piece of work inderdad!

Comment wise: did you think about maybe doing the labelling on a separate sheet of paper or on tracing paper? that way you could compose the two together digitally & it would probably be easier to make smooth looking labels.

11-26-2012, 05:17 PM
This is really impressive. Reminds me of the maps in The Atlas of Middle Earth.

11-27-2012, 05:57 AM
Thanks everyone for your kind words and comments!

@Lukc: I didn't think about it, no... but I think, for this project at least, that I prefer having a 100% completely hand-drawn map, and no tinkering with the computer. But that's a good idea for future, and more digitally-oriented projects.

@Lalaithion: Yes indeed... Where do you think I picked this style? ;)

As for the update, I drew the coasts and labels for Skagos, I hope to finish the map soon... But the elements left are mountains and forests, not the easiest and quickest things to draw...

12-05-2012, 06:50 AM
Thats some impressing Handwork here!

01-17-2013, 01:36 PM
Hello everyone,

it took time, but it is finally done... I present to you, the map of the Bay of Seals. It should roughly overlap with the first map, "Beyond the Wall".


The next step will most likely be the Bay of Ice (yes, I'm into bays these times...), but I think I'll do some other projects in the mean time: I'm preparing an Ars Magica campaign, and that means of course a few maps... I already posted a map here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/finished-maps/21598-handdrawn-map-go%EBlo-county.html), but I'm bound to draw it again (I did some more research, and there are some errors and missing elements...), and add a few other maps. So don't worry if the next one takes some time to come.

Thanks to - Max - (http://www.cartographersguild.com/members/-+max+-.html) for the rep, it gave me the little nudge necessary to finish this map...

As always, feel free to comment and give some advice!

- Max -
01-17-2013, 02:12 PM
Nice effort there though, after having looked at your maps several times that moutains looks a bit odd to my eyes and I really think that terrains could get more work - more than white areas ;)

Keep up the good work

Freehand 5.5
01-17-2013, 03:16 PM
Your lineart should be more disciplined, but I think this will come with more exercise.
Perhaps you should use a better pen to get more precision to your lines.

And I must admit, I don't like the mountains. It would be better to get them a bit of perspective and shading.

My advice would be, not to start with a complete map with hours of work, but first do some trying out on a scrap paper.
Did you try a few variation concept of mountains before you started? For me it looks more like taking the first idea you got.

Despite this, i like your project though.
The black lettering is very nice, too. One can see that you're a skilled scribe.

01-17-2013, 06:01 PM
Thanks for your advice.

The idea behind this project was to have a lot of drawing to do, to be able to improve by repetition, and to allow myself some experiment in the process --- I have some difficulties drawing just to experiment... I lack the whole image when drawing on scrap paper, and I don't like working "for nothing". I'll have to be a little harder on myself.

As for the precision of the lines, I did try to draw this map quite quickly (to see how it went... mountains and forests were drawn in little more than 1 hour. I was a little more careful of coasts and labels, but i doubt more than 4 hours went into this one)... so I guess this shows. The scan is on 600dpi, though, so the resolution is perhaps a bit too much and details too visible --- the original is drawn on a A4 sheet. But you are completely right. My pens are quite used (and misused), too! I should change them someday.

Anyway, thank a lot for the feedback, it means a lot to me. The next map will build on this, and we'll hopefully have some better mountains and lines!