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jfrazierjr
05-26-2008, 10:23 PM
So, I am playing around with GIMP in creating mountains. I have three styles which are variations of the same underlying technique. Primarily, I am interested in the feed back about the actual mountain ridges, though any comments about the "hilly" border, river, lake, or forests are welcome also.

I appreciate anyone who comments on the style they prefer.

Talroth
05-26-2008, 11:16 PM
Your first and second ones show promise, but your choice of colour scheme leaves a lot to be desired.

They might look better if you find a better way to blend them, I think the yellow blending point is throwing everything off and making it look horrible when it isn't that bad.

Try reducing the Yellow sections of the first one, and for the second one, it might look good if redone in gray.

jfrazierjr
05-27-2008, 12:05 AM
Thanks Talroth. To be honest, I started with a blank transparant layer and went with the mountian texture from there. I am most concerned with the mountain texture. I just threw the forests, rivers, etc in to make it look more than just a bunch of mountains. The current map is all the exact same with 3 layers turned on or off for the actual texture of the mountians.

1 is the bottom layer alone
2 is the a higher layer alone
3 is a combination of 1 over 2 (overlay mode) in an attempt to get more of the valleys texture.

Gamerprinter
05-27-2008, 12:08 AM
Actually, none of these work for me. They all look like a shape with a tiled image of rough terrain on them - they don't look like mountain ranges.

What I mean is, they lack a ridgeline or some other feature to make them more believeable as mountains.

To help explain what I mean, I created this simple mountain range with a distinct ridgeline. I did not create this in GIMP, rather I used Xara Xtreme 4.0, but you should be able to create something like this in GIMP.

Sample mountain ridgeline...

You need something more than just a tiled texture fill.

RobA
05-27-2008, 01:53 AM
GP raised a good point..no idea what the scale is.

Are these single ranges (like GP posits with the provided example) or are these mountain "fields" like this sat shot of the rockies (note the scale):

3951

-Rob A>

Gamerprinter
05-27-2008, 03:19 AM
Even as a mountain "field" such as the Rockies or Himalayas, there is still a natural geographic pattern, flow and direction - even with mountain ranges back to back.

I can agree that some of the Rockies terrain reflect the random undulations of mountains in Jfrazierjr's sample, still there are distinct ranges with ridgelines in RobA's sample map.

I'm not trying to criticize so much as to give example of what I feel your mountains need to be more convincing, that's all.

DanChops
05-27-2008, 03:29 AM
So, I am playing around with GIMP in creating mountains. I have three styles which are variations of the same underlying technique. Primarily, I am interested in the feed back about the actual mountain ridges, though any comments about the "hilly" border, river, lake, or forests are welcome also.

I appreciate anyone who comments on the style they prefer.

I'm assuming that your scale is more in line with the image posted by Rob.

I prefer the third one for mountains, but the first one shows a ton of promise for canyons. How much control do you have over the texture? Can you set up the ridges whereever you like, or is a completely random thing? Care to share your techniques?

jfrazierjr
05-27-2008, 10:31 AM
Actually, none of these work for me. They all look like a shape with a tiled image of rough terrain on them - they don't look like mountain ranges.

What I mean is, they lack a ridgeline or some other feature to make them more believeable as mountains.

Heh... thats why I am playing around.:D The first screen shot is a rather simplistic attempt at creating a somewhat a of ridge line on multiple mountain ranges from a fairly high altitude WHILE still conveying the intent that they are still mountains. The scale is somewhat less than earth satellite and higher than standard aerial photography. The intent is to somewhat stylistically depict a range of mountains of some amorphous general shape. Just as a reference, let's say this map is 600 miles wide, but my goal is to create mountains that look like they may be mountains from a continent scale without spending hours and hours doing so. At this point, I am limiting myself to learning GIMP, but would be willing to use any software as long as it's free for future endeavors.

This is one of the issues with large scale mapping in between artistic (hand draw, orthogonal type) and satellite styles. Looking at satellite images of several continents, you really, truly cannot know where mountains lay except for the snow covered peaks unless you actually know where they are, so I am trying to find something in between to signify to the viewer that "hey, these are where the mountains are and there are lots of mountains in this range". Based on the presumed scale of this particular map, there "should" be forest colors visible, but again I just wanted more of the general idea that there were mountains here as the main thought.

Your comments AND criticisms are both welcome. As I said, I am just playing around trying to come up with something quick and easy that fits this criteria and of course, would be more than willing to try something else if someone has suggestions while using GIMP.

For the record, I tend to prefer #1 as this to me gives the illusion of ridge lines AND semi random peak/valley formations.

Oh, and how do the rivers look? I just got a tablet and started playing with it yesterday and it's taking some getting used to.

Joe

rpgmapmaker
05-27-2008, 10:34 AM
Nice comments so far... I am always getting great information by reading threads like this.

I think the first one is the best of the three but like others have said non are quite there yet... depending on the look you are going for.

Take a look at the nice rivers you made and then back at the mountains... try to imagine where and how the water is flowing into them from the mountains and adjust the "range" to look more like they all have the "mission" of making the rivers and I think that will help give them a more eroded natural look.

It is mostly that the pattern of the range (as is) would lead more to there being many small lakes as you have it now... IMO

-Chris

Karro
05-27-2008, 12:07 PM
I also prefer the first version, though I like Gameprinter's mountains better. Though those may not really reflect what mountains look like from satellite or high-altitude photography, but artistically, I feel like they get the idea across better. I guess, however, that they aren't really useable to show a series of ridgelines over a wide-ranging geographic region.

jfrazierjr
05-27-2008, 12:40 PM
Here is another example based on the concepts I did for #1. Also, the colors are a bit more muted. All of the tests come from the same base with variations in bump map properties and/or number of bump maps overlain.

jfrazierjr
05-27-2008, 02:47 PM
Ok, so I have what I believe is going to be my final test for making mountains. This has both ridge lines and bit of texture, though perhaps a tiny bit to much on the last bump map for the mountains.

My goal is to get a bit of the randomness in shape for peaks/valleys in a mountain range while maintaining a some of the texture when zoomed in. Some of the weave and flow as it were...

I would appreciate comments and criticisms from as many people as possible(ie, most of the community leaders at least), and if anyone wants to see detailed steps, I will be glad to post up a tutorial. Like wise, if anyone knows a better way to do this in GIMP, please pipe up!

Joe

ravells
05-27-2008, 05:12 PM
I'm afraid it doesn't really look, 'mountain like' to me. The edges of the field seem to be too uniform...perhaps a layer mask to roughen the edges a bit? I really do like the twisty pattern of ridgelines within the range itself, but if you could find a way to texture or colour the 'low' areas, that might really make them shine. I think there's great potential in the design, but there's a little more work required, but if you can get there, it will be a fantastic way to do mountains.

rpgmapmaker
05-27-2008, 05:40 PM
I “think” I understand what you are trying to do now... but let me ask just to make sure...

Are you trying to develop a new or improved technique for making mountain ranges without drawing it by hand using only "filters" to randomly generated textures, layer transfer types, layer masks, and bump maps to achieve the desired outcome? :?:

If so… I see potential in the images you are making but I am not sure how we can help unless you describe the filters/textures/ bump maps and the overall possess you are using in more detail. As there is a difference between developing a digital creation possess and developing an artistic drawing style.

If not… just pretend that I have said nothing and carry on with what you were doing before I opened my digital mouth… :D

-Chris

jfrazierjr
05-27-2008, 07:24 PM
I “think” I understand what you are trying to do now... but let me ask just to make sure...

Are you trying to develop a new or improved technique for making mountain ranges without drawing it by hand using only "filters" to randomly generated textures, layer transfer types, layer masks, and bump maps to achieve the desired outcome? :

heh... yes and no. Will follow up post with the basics of the process I have been playing with the past week so you can see what I am doing. In a nutshell, I am quickly hand drawing a B/W layer to simulate a light/shadow of a bunch of mountains. Then on top of that, I add a few bump maps to create shape the peaks/valleys and then add a bit of rock texture. Basically, I am playing around trying to find something "I" like for a top down mountain range.


If so… I see potential in the images you are making but I am not sure how we can help unless you describe the filters/textures/ bump maps and the overall possess you are using in more detail. As there is a difference between developing a digital creation possess and developing an artistic drawing style.


Will add to this post later tonight as time permits with the steps and hopefully, this will become clearer. Note counting the time spend trying to blend one layer into another, just creating the mountains themselves takes around 15-20 minutes. As you indicate, I don't what to spend hours to create a regional/global map in this style. If I was going to spend that kind of time, I would hand draw the mountains and trees. Likewise, if I wanted to get a decent relief map, I would generate something in Fractal World Explore rand and tweak from there. I want something in between. Here are the tools I have currently available:

FWE
Fractal Mapper 8
GIMP

Of these, I have the most experience with Fractal Mapper as I have built several maps for my DM's world, but none of these are what I would call great. In an event, I am also limited to using the tools I currently have or those that are free. So far I have seen no example maps which convey what I am trying to accomplish in a way I like except those created with programs which require great technical skill and/or have a monetary cost.

Joe

su_liam
05-28-2008, 03:28 AM
First off, look at RobA's attachment. Those are real mountains and they basically tell you just what rpgmapmaker is trying to.

A mountain range is a labyrinth. For every point on that labyrinth(with certain exceptions where evaporation exceeds precipitation or the underlying strata are very porous) there is a path out. Water has three ways to get off your mountain: it can evaporate, it can flow across the surface, or it can fill a depression with a lake till it finds a way to flow out. A good way to structure a mountain range is to build a central spine then build radiating spines. Some of those radiating spines can themselves have spines that radiate parallel to the central spine, but make sure those have outlets.


I'm afraid it doesn't really look, 'mountain like' to me. The edges of the field seem to be too uniform...perhaps a layer mask to roughen the edges a bit? I really do like the twisty pattern of ridgelines within the range itself, but if you could find a way to texture or colour the 'low' areas, that might really make them shine. I think there's great potential in the design, but there's a little more work required, but if you can get there, it will be a fantastic way to do mountains.

I have to agree with Ravells here. To amplify on what I believe to be part of his point, you need to carry some of the lowland texture up into the mountains. Perhaps carrying some green up into the valleys between the ridges. These green areas can become increasingly narrow as you work your way deeper into the network. Try Google Earth on the Himalayas for examples. This can serve both to make your mountains more realistic and also blend them in better with the lowlands. I'll try an example later. Bedtime now.

ravells
05-28-2008, 09:51 AM
There is a good shaded relief map of Everest and its surrounding mountains here (http://shop.nationalgeographic.com/product/646/3887/172.html). May be worth a look for some inspiration?

Also have a look here (http://www.challengermap.org/)for general wow-dom. Those Canadians make BIG 3d maps!

jfrazierjr
05-28-2008, 09:09 PM
Ugh... Another try. I need to go back through and clean up the forests that are on top of the mountains and make them a bit more ragged. Hopefully, that will make them look a bit better and less uniform, but for now, I am going to play with my new tablet for a bit.

Karro
05-29-2008, 11:03 AM
Ugh... Another try. I need to go back through and clean up the forests that are on top of the mountains and make them a bit more ragged. Hopefully, that will make them look a bit better and less uniform, but for now, I am going to play with my new tablet for a bit.

Hey, that's looking pretty good! Much better than the initial images.

What does the stuff that looks like a giant patch of lichen (to the east and west of the mountains) represent? They don't look like the forests that are in the midst of the mountains.

jfrazierjr
05-29-2008, 11:10 AM
Ok, here is my final try, with a new technique. There are no forests, or mountain colors, just a background and the mountains themselves. You may note that the left half might look quite a bit better (more craggy and irregular) than the ones of the right. This is be design for my testing. I have to say I rather like the way the ones on the right came out in terms of texture and stuff, so will be playing with this a lot more in the future.

I know it's rather hard to separate components of an unfinished map, but please let me know what you think about the texture of the mountains themselves.

Perhaps this weekend, I will take this example and finish it up with trees, water, and some more color variation in the mountains themselves.

Joe

ravells
05-29-2008, 11:51 AM
Looks much better to me. I think you could really work with this.

jfrazierjr
05-29-2008, 12:34 PM
Thanks ravells. Which of the two last examples looks more mountain like? Or are they both fairly ok, just different type of mountains? Granted, the 2nd to last example has a lot more detail in terms of forests, color, etc, but the hills are more rounded like older mountains. The latter has no fine detail work, but the ridgelines are a lot sharper. If they are both passable, then so much the better as it gives me a bit more options in terms of why style go where just like in the real world.

Joe

ravells
05-29-2008, 12:37 PM
I thought the last example was way better than the second to last example.

jfrazierjr
05-29-2008, 03:38 PM
I thought the last example was way better than the second to last example.

Thanks. There may be an easier way than what I am doing to get to both (they both have almost the same technique. I like both as you can actually do mountains based on the type. Not all mountains have bold sharp pointy things any more due to their relative age.)

Ultimately, both take around 20-30 minutes to do the mountains part depending on how the much playing with the bump map settings you do (and undos), so not a hugh time investment. I am sure someone with more experience with GIMP and a more artistic eye could probably get similar results in 10 minutes or so.

Now, for some other opinions, hopefully from all of the previous posters and those that have not commented so far.

Joe

Karro
05-29-2008, 07:11 PM
I like both for different reasons.

The second to last (post 18 ) looks a little more complete, and the mountians are part of the land around them. Everything seems to mesh well together.

I like the licheny stuff to the sides of the mountains, though I don't know what it represents. And how did you do the rivers? They cut through the mountains and the land very nicely, and the drop shadow looks kind of cool.

The last one has cooler looking ridge-lines, but they seem separate from the land surrounding them. Maybe that's not as much of a problem as I think, but my first impression of it is kind of jarring. A closer inspection, however, reveals some very cool details on the mountainsides.

Are you going to share the techniques you are using?

jfrazierjr
05-29-2008, 08:52 PM
I like both for different reasons.

The second to last (post 18 ) looks a little more complete, and the mountians are part of the land around them. Everything seems to mesh well together.

I like the licheny stuff to the sides of the mountains, though I don't know what it represents. And how did you do the rivers? They cut through the mountains and the land very nicely, and the drop shadow looks kind of cool.


Forests. I just happen to do the two sets of forests in two different layers at two separate times and used different gradients to fill, hence the different colors. Besides, they are different types of trees...:D

As for the rivers, thats just a simple bevel ala RobA's suggestion. I put all the water on the same layer, filled with color, added a bit of noise for color variation, selected everything, made a layer mask and then applied a bevel of about 3 px. I will proably use 1 px next time as that looks a bit much looking back at it.






The last one has cooler looking ridge-lines, but they seem separate from the land surrounding them. Maybe that's not as much of a problem as I think, but my first impression of it is kind of jarring. A closer inspection, however, reveals some very cool details on the mountainsides.

Are you going to share the techniques you are using?

Yea, I am fairly happy with my final technique, so hopefully a few others will say it's all good. I want to run through it a few more times to make sure I have everything good in my head before I try to explain it to someone else. For me, it's still a WIP idea, though I think I am getting toward the end. Here is a quick overview.


Grey layer

Add white lines(fairly thick) for the ridges, making sure there is no more than 2 - 3x width of grey between white(assuming you don't want wide valleys)

Noise->Spread. still playing with this, but perhaps double what your brush size is?????

G. Blur. ditto.... you want no real pixellization, but you want some cloudiness where the spread was... perhaps 15 px???

Bump map onto itself. Max Depth, 3/4 Elevation, max ambient

Here is what I have found to be the [U]key[/dU] thing. with a fairly small brush, use the smudge tool to muddy up the ridge line with criss-cross strokes at various angles AND some drawing straight down from the ridge lines into the valleys. This transfers some grey up and some white down. This gets you the ragged peaks instead of solid ridgelines.

Finally, bump map back to itself again with little of no ambient, max depth, 1/2-3/4 elevation.

You may (most likely will) have some "rings" artifacts in the valleys from the bump map, so you will need to smudge or erase those manually, cover, or blend in some other way. This is one of the reasons the first bump map is done at high Ambient to minimize this to a large degree on the second bump map.

Joe

jfrazierjr
05-30-2008, 12:56 AM
Ok, so here is a final with some bells and whistles. Nothing major here, just some of mountains done in this style, a few forests, and some water. Also, if you don't mind grey scale OR have a better way to blend in color other than using the gradient tools, the straight up greyscale version looks very nice. I attached the greyscale version of the same mountains sans other stuff for comparison.

ravells
05-30-2008, 06:04 AM
I think these mountains would be great if the scale you're drawing them at is very small (by which I mean showing a very large area of land). So they seem to be out of sync with the scale of the rivers and forests to me, but they're glorious none the less.

torstan
05-30-2008, 06:27 AM
I like the mountains a lot. Very good result and a ver interesting progression from the earlier versions.

I have a small problem with your forests though :) The forest sits over the mountains and doesn't conform to their shape. Could you use the moutain layer as a bump map for the forests? Then it would look like the forest was running over the mountain sides. At the moment it looks like the forests are so large they smother the moutains, which is a bit wierd for the scale.

Also, if these are large mountains (larger than a few thousand feet) there should be a tree-line above which there will be no trees. So you'd have the mountain peaks showing through the forest with the forests left in the valleys.

All in all though, a lovely map. Really like the colour scheme you've put together for this.

jfrazierjr
05-30-2008, 10:08 AM
I think these mountains would be great if the scale you're drawing them at is very small (by which I mean showing a very large area of land). So they seem to be out of sync with the scale of the rivers and forests to me, but they're glorious none the less.

Well, that was a big part of the original thought process. I could not find any technique for a large scale map (1400 x1100 miles or so) that I liked and started playing with bits and pieces of several techniques combined into one.




I like the mountains a lot. Very good result and a ver interesting progression from the earlier versions.

I have a small problem with your forests though :) The forest sits over the mountains and doesn't conform to their shape. Could you use the moutain layer as a bump map for the forests? Then it would look like the forest was running over the mountain sides. At the moment it looks like the forests are so large they smother the moutains, which is a bit wierd for the scale.

Also, if these are large mountains (larger than a few thousand feet) there should be a tree-line above which there will be no trees. So you'd have the mountain peaks showing through the forest with the forests left in the valleys.

All in all though, a lovely map. Really like the colour scheme you've put together for this.

Good idea with the bump map. I did this, though it messed up texture some, so I am not happy with the final result, but I see what you mean. Since I was just putzing around last night, I did not do the things I might normally do (filter, copy, filter the new one, copy, etc) so I can't undo and do this first. Will probably play with it more and remove the forests and start from scratch. The original thought was to try to get more wispy like forests on bits of the mountains similar to the ones directly below the bigger of the two mountain lakes. But this shape was what I ended up with, and I was to lazy (sleepy based on the time) to mess with it much more. Also, not sure how I ended up drawing a river over a mountain ridge line... Granted, its fantasy, but hopefully, rivers still only run down hill.

Joe

RobA
05-30-2008, 11:10 AM
Those mountains rock!

Nice technique - this is a very nice representation of a large scale aerial view. (Mountains, that is. As already mentioned, the other elements are a bit out of scale.)

-Rob A>

jfrazierjr
05-30-2008, 11:27 AM
Those mountains rock!

Nice technique - this is a very nice representation of a large scale aerial view.

-Rob A>


Thanks Rob. I could not have gotten this far without your excellent GIMP tutorials to get me started. heh... I have learned a lot about GIMP in the past 4 weeks.

Joe

RobA
05-30-2008, 11:50 AM
I have learned a lot about GIMP in the past 4 weeks.

Joe

Thanks!

It is funny, but someone suggested I post the tutorial in a mainstream GIMP forum, as it provides a good "beginner guide" to GIMP, more comprehensive than many others out there for basic stuff :)

-Rob A>

Karro
06-02-2008, 01:07 AM
I know you're still refining it, but when you finish, you ought to post the technique in the tutorials! With screencaps! :D

I've been developing a mountain style that I like, but when I go to do my worldmap, I think perhaps your style is a bit superior for that particular purpose... or I might be able to find a way to incorporate the styles together!

jfrazierjr
06-02-2008, 01:13 AM
Thanks!

It is funny, but someone suggested I post the tutorial in a mainstream GIMP forum, as it provides a good "beginner guide" to GIMP, more comprehensive than many others out there for basic stuff :)

-Rob A>


Honestly, I think thats a really good idea. Here's why: Most of the GIMP tutorials I have found out there are very tightly focused on a small subset of tools to accomplish a specific effect that only takes a small bit of time. Yours however uses many different techniques and builds upon things done previously to make a nice artistic result. Now, granted, there are probably a few things that could be clarified in your pdf's, but overall, they are a good guide for someone new to GIMP.

Joe

jfrazierjr
06-03-2008, 12:07 AM
Ok, here is another one I have been playing around with. I spent a bit of time doing some nice blending, but to many merged layers and stuff, so there are a few things that are not right, namely, the coast is not fractalized enough, and the mountain lake does not have the nice coastline water effect the other water has.

How does this look as a whole given the known problems which I unfortunately, cannot easily fix right now. This is still a test map, so it will just be thrown away after I have finished my playing with the techniques.

Joe

Karro
06-03-2008, 10:35 AM
Hey, I like the beveled effect on the rivers and water bodies, but I can't figure out how to do it myself. I've looked all through the Filters drop down, and the only reference to "bevel" that I can find is the "Add Bevel" under the Decor submenu, and that seems to produce a new image that may or may not have a bevel in it... How do you do it?

I tried out DanChop's forest techniques, as you suggested. They turned out quite well.

In all, I think your maps are looking great! There are a few things I would work on with the appearance of the cities (I don't like the yellow back-glow so much, I think I prefer the earth-tones back-glow that RobA's original tutorial used), but that's a fairly minor quibble.

RobA
06-03-2008, 11:07 AM
Joe-

I really want to complement you. You have taken this technique and turned it way up! This is truly artistic - very painterly!

-Rob A>

RobA
06-03-2008, 11:11 AM
Hey, I like the beveled effect on the rivers and water bodies, but I can't figure out how to do it myself. I've looked all through the Filters drop down, and the only reference to "bevel" that I can find is the "Add Bevel" under the Decor submenu, and that seems to produce a new image that may or may not have a bevel in it... How do you do it?

Back here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showpost.php?p=20310&postcount=4) I explained one way using a blurred copy of the river layer as a bump map. This gives much more control than the Decor submenu.

-Rob A>

Karro
06-03-2008, 11:37 AM
Back here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showpost.php?p=20310&postcount=4) I explained one way using a blurred copy of the river layer as a bump map. This gives much more control than the Decor submenu.

-Rob A>

You are all over GIMP! I'll dig through the forums to see what great advice I can find! Thanks!

NeonKnight
06-03-2008, 12:21 PM
Paper...no, Plastic....Uh, Reusable, Environmentally friendly Canvas Bags!

jfrazierjr
06-03-2008, 05:29 PM
Hey, I like the beveled effect on the rivers and water bodies, but I can't figure out how to do it myself. I've looked all through the Filters drop down, and the only reference to "bevel" that I can find is the "Add Bevel" under the Decor submenu, and that seems to produce a new image that may or may not have a bevel in it... How do you do it?Thanks, the bevel is the one you mentioned. I think it goes way to deep, even with 1px, so will probably give Rob's suggestion a try. When you click on the bevel menu, in the popup window, there is a checkbox, turn OFF the "make a copy" or whatever it says, and turn ON the one for keep bumpmap. I find it easier to keep this extra bump map layer for making layer masks correctly later. Also, with a separate b/w, it's easier to play with "blotting" out bits of the rivers so you can get some to run UNDER parts of the forests and have them peek out every so often as they meander. This map does not have any examples of that, but I would probably use a black air brush approach with one of the galaxy brushes in white and it makes a perfect layer mask template. hmmmmm.. will have to play with this in a bit. At least thats my assumption at this point.


I tried out DanChop's forest techniques, as you suggested. They turned out quite well.

Cool. And the work in progress is where? I really love the way Dan did his forests also.


In all, I think your maps are looking great! There are a few things I would work on with the appearance of the cities (I don't like the yellow back-glow so much, I think I prefer the earth-tones back-glow that RobA's original tutorial used), but that's a fairly minor quibble.

Thank you very much. I spent MOST of my time on this map playing with custom gradients and blending and messing with different masks. Also, I wanted to spend some time learning how the text to path and the stoke path stuff worked. I started to do a few paths for trails, but got some messed up and in different styles, so I just deleted that layer and posted. None of these are really anything more than me playing with GIMP. The landmasses for all the examples are just randomly created and thus the lack of fractalization on the land->sea conversion. I just made up the names for what ever popped into my head at that moment. heh.. you don't like red on yellow?????


Joe

jfrazierjr
06-03-2008, 05:31 PM
Joe-

I really want to complement you. You have taken this technique and turned it way up! This is truly artistic - very painterly!

-Rob A>

Thank you Rob. Coming from the GIMP master, that means tons. Perhaps soon, I will actually start playing with a real map that actually means something...

Joe

jfrazierjr
06-03-2008, 05:35 PM
Back here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showpost.php?p=20310&postcount=4) I explained one way using a blurred copy of the river layer as a bump map. This gives much more control than the Decor submenu.

-Rob A>


You are all over GIMP! I'll dig through the forums to see what great advice I can find! Thanks!

Someone SOOOO needs to gather up all of Rob's tips/links and consolidate them into an index! Perhaps the sticky topic could be "GIMP - RobA says how to do ...."

Joe

Karro
06-04-2008, 01:19 PM
Thanks, the bevel is the one you mentioned. I think it goes way to deep, even with 1px, so will probably give Rob's suggestion a try. When you click on the bevel menu, in the popup window, there is a checkbox, turn OFF the "make a copy" or whatever it says, and turn ON the one for keep bumpmap. I find it easier to keep this extra bump map layer for making layer masks correctly later. Also, with a separate b/w, it's easier to play with "blotting" out bits of the rivers so you can get some to run UNDER parts of the forests and have them peek out every so often as they meander. This map does not have any examples of that, but I would probably use a black air brush approach with one of the galaxy brushes in white and it makes a perfect layer mask template. hmmmmm.. will have to play with this in a bit. At least thats my assumption at this point.

I think I've almost got that part figured out, but i'll need to play a lot with the settings. I think I want it a little more subtle than what it appeared in my first attempt (haven't got an image of that yet).

I think, initially, I will try leaving the forest completely exposed, as I like to see it's path, but might try the partially-hidden effect you're going for, as well.



Cool. And the work in progress is where? I really love the way Dan did his forests also.


My most current WIP is here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showpost.php?p=21637&postcount=23).


Thank you very much. I spent MOST of my time on this map playing with custom gradients and blending and messing with different masks. Also, I wanted to spend some time learning how the text to path and the stoke path stuff worked. I started to do a few paths for trails, but got some messed up and in different styles, so I just deleted that layer and posted. None of these are really anything more than me playing with GIMP. The landmasses for all the examples are just randomly created and thus the lack of fractalization on the land->sea conversion. I just made up the names for what ever popped into my head at that moment. heh.. you don't like red on yellow?????


Joe


Yeah, red-on-yellow isn't my favorite thing on this map, though I understand it. In my old maps, I've often done a red circle to mark towns and cities because it's bold-looking and clearly separate from the underlying geographic map.

What kinds of cutom gradients were you working with?

jfrazierjr
06-04-2008, 09:32 PM
What kinds of cutom gradients were you working with?

Well... if you look really closely, you will see some of the underlying grass color very lightly on the mountain sides. I think I got lucky with my greyscale since attempts to recreate with the same gradient or different modifications have of that gradient came out rather horrible. Basically, my idea was to have some tiny bit of green on the mountains (without doing it manually) and somehow I got that with this map. Wish I could figure out how to get this part to look right consistently.

Joe

Karro
06-05-2008, 01:17 AM
Well... if you look really closely, you will see some of the underlying grass color very lightly on the mountain sides. I think I got lucky with my greyscale since attempts to recreate with the same gradient or different modifications have of that gradient came out rather horrible. Basically, my idea was to have some tiny bit of green on the mountains (without doing it manually) and somehow I got that with this map. Wish I could figure out how to get this part to look right consistently.

Joe

Hopefully you can figure out how to reproduce it, then share the process with us all! :)