View Full Version : First Map Making Attempt. PLEASE CRITIQUE!

11-26-2012, 04:07 PM
Used GIMP. First attempt at a map that wasn't hand-drawn. Lemme know what you think!

I'd love as much criticism as you can give. I plan on using this for my novel so if anyone wants to give advice on how to make it better please comment!

11-26-2012, 07:53 PM
Definately a nice land mass you got there :) I like the texture that you have on the land too. My one point of comment is the rivers. First off,, I am not sure what you used to draw them but they look VERY blocky. Maybe try to use a thinner stroke or brush while drawing them so that the pixels don't just bunch up like they do atm. The general layout of most of the rivers look goo to me, but there are a few that have me pulling out my badge....In the top left land mass you have two rivers coming out on both sides of the mountains. No problem there, but each of those rivers have their own little problems; the west one branches off before reaching the water, when NORMALLY (depending on Gods or mans intervention) they would behave in an opposite fashion - Smaller rivers coming from their source joining up into larger rivers on their way to the ocean.

The east river also splits and heads in different directions. I would suggest eliminating the southern branch and add a third river starting at the south east of the mountains that goes through the lake instead.

There are others that do the splits on the way to the ocean but I really have no idea of the scale, so they COULD be deltas, but I have my reservations about that.

One last thing would be the hills symbol...they kinda make look at them a bit cross-eyed...they are a bit too close too me....maybe try eliminating a hill or two from the brush symbol...if you know what I mean. If not just ask and I will try to explain better but I just can't think of how atm....

Like I said before, I like what has been done so far, looking forward to seeing move forward. Have some rep for your first map :)

11-26-2012, 07:59 PM
Hi there Albaen. Here's my critique. The paper texture looks good and the symbols as well (though hills seem disproportionately small compared with the trees - I'd probably triple the size of them). The stroke along the coastline seems a bit large. The rivers look angular and choppy - I'd recommend zooming in, using a small (1-2 px) round brush and drawing these by hand. The ocean is a problem. It really doesn't match the hand-drawn feel of the rest of the map. if you want to add a little color, I would recommend turning down the Opacity of the layer quite a bit (to between 5-15%) and playing with blending modes. Hope that was useful to you.


11-27-2012, 09:10 AM
Thanks for the critiques guys! I did have a lot of trouble with the rivers; no matter what I did, they wouldn't turn out right. I adjusted the mountains and forests, reworked the river, and screwed around with the ocean. Can't say that I made it any better, but I screwed around with it and gained some experience. Some of the symbols (Fortress on the bottleneck, dragon rune, and skull and crossbones) have to do with the plot of the novel taking place here.

Again, let me know what you think and give me some advice on how to improve!

11-27-2012, 03:37 PM
The new rivers are definitely an improvement on the old. The texture you added to the sea does help a bit as well.


11-27-2012, 03:54 PM
I agree with Arsheesh the new rivers looks much better. Maybe you could split them a bit more close to the mountains. Try to see them as a tree, where you have the trunk to the see and then the branches upstream to the mountains forking out. I also like your skulls. The see feels a bit strong in its colour though, I'd try to tone it down a bit.

11-27-2012, 04:35 PM
I was just messing around and put some cloud cover on the map and it looks kinda cool. Doubt I will use this but just wanted to put it up. It really muted the colors.

11-28-2012, 03:02 AM
Yes the color is very dim now Rest depend on you.

12-05-2012, 06:51 AM
I liked your choice of color, but I am not so sure about those clauds.

12-11-2012, 09:21 PM
I have to agree with the others here, take the contrast down on that ocean. :)
A neat thing you can do is get a photo of some water colors (Search water color texture, photo type: large on Google) and then put the layer on overlay, 30% opacity for a nice ocean texture. Also be sure you desaturate the texture photographs.