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The-Somberlain
06-04-2008, 11:39 AM
So, ladies and gentlemen here is my first contribution to this forum.

Setting Information:
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The Kingdom of Varachan is a cursed wasteland with black soil and dead trees. It is believed that in ancient times, three drops of blood fell from the sky. These belonged to Kaball, the God of Death. One of the drops fell here in the land of Varachan. And since one can find only death, pain and suffering here.
There are a lot of tall, steep mountain ranges as a result of high volcanic activity. Most of them have a dark black color because they were formed from magma.
There is little to none vegetation, as the soil is a mix of mud and ash, where nothing can grow...except from the Ashen Forest. The forest takes its name from the gray leaves of the trees. It is a dead forest, alive in a strange, evil way.

So, why do people live here? Because the mountains are rich in minerals, gems, silver, etc. There are great mines, that reach deep inside the mountains, which produce all kinds of wealth from the bowels of the earth.

OK! Enough...I just tell you these in order to inform you a little bit about this map, so that you can tell me if it suits the picture I just drew with my words (omg, how poetic...) :P

Technical Information:
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The map was made in Photoshop CS3 in one afternoon. Of course, it's not completely finished, but I am anxious to get feedback. It may seem a little empty, but there are not a lot of thing left to be done. After all it is the map of a wasteland...

I used these brushes (http://pickebu.deviantart.com/art/Old-Map-Brush-Set-64151770). The background paper was also on the net, but I can't remember where I found it.

Anyway, if you find this interesting then I can try to make a tutorial. If not, I can try harder and make something better...All constructive criticism is welcome.

PS: If you want to know more about Varachan, I will be glad to inform you... :)

Midgardsormr
06-04-2008, 12:01 PM
It's a nice-looking map. I like the color you chose for the water as it relates to the darkened paper edges.

You have a lighting problem, though. The settlement icons are shaded on the right, but the mountains and hills are shaded on the left.

The-Somberlain
06-04-2008, 12:21 PM
Oh! You are right about the light...I should correct that. Thanks!

jfrazierjr
06-04-2008, 12:30 PM
It's a nice-looking map. I like the color you chose for the water as it relates to the darkened paper edges.

You have a lighting problem, though. The settlement icons are shaded on the right, but the mountains and hills are shaded on the left.

What Midgardsormr said. I LOVE that you actually have trunks for your little tiny trees. It bugs me a bit when people do side view mountains and top down everything else. It's even better when you managed to get some nice ISO city/town icons on there also!

On a side note, not that it's horribly bad or anything, but it appears you have some repetition to your mountains. If you have the time, you may want to consider hand drawing all the mountains(there is a video tutorial link in the Tutorial section) or if you don't have time for that, quickly replace some of the few that are to close together. The three at the top of the Mountains of Fire range initially were what caught my eye.

Finally, does the swamp cover the entire north? I assume so by the green tint. If you want to make this stand out a bit more, you might want to try a bit of stippling. You can try this for inspiration http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?p=21956#post21956 or not....


Very good work. And I love the premise.

Joe

töff
06-04-2008, 04:30 PM
Nice style!

I kinda hate the font though. Really tough to read.

Bohunk
06-04-2008, 04:54 PM
I like it, clean and simple, except for that font. The font seems a bit fancy for this "handdrawn" map. maybe lose the glow or outline?

jfrazierjr
06-04-2008, 06:08 PM
Nice style!

I kinda hate the font though. Really tough to read.


I like it, clean and simple, except for that font. The font seems a bit fancy for this "handdrawn" map. maybe lose the glow or outline?

Yea, now that others point it out, it is a bit glaring and hard to read. I did not really pay much attention to that the first look.

Joe

torstan
06-05-2008, 06:33 AM
That's really very pretty. Thanks for the link to the brushes as well. That's a great set of images.

NeonKnight
06-05-2008, 07:58 AM
I must agree with others. The map is beautiful except for the font. It makes the smaller type (like for Towns/Cities) very difficult to read. Example is the Town of Ghild, gild or something like that. Like I said, difficult to read.

Karro
06-05-2008, 08:55 AM
That's really very pretty. Thanks for the link to the brushes as well. That's a great set of images.

I thought I read somewhere that GIMP can use photoshop brushes. Is this true?

RobA
06-05-2008, 10:00 AM
From 2.4 it can use abr brush sets like these ones.

-Rob A>

Karro
06-05-2008, 10:05 AM
From 2.4 it can use abr brush sets like these ones.

-Rob A>

Wow. That's cool! I take it I just have to copy them into the brushes folder?

RobA
06-05-2008, 11:06 AM
Wow. That's cool! I take it I just have to copy them into the brushes folder?

Yep. Either into the local user profile brushes folder, or the main install brushes folder.

(On that note, I installed python-fu on my computer JUST to get the brush manager extension (http://myweb.msoe.edu/~bogies/brushmanager/). It lets you dynamically activate and deactivate brush sets within gimp. I found that my 100's of grunge, tech and specialty brushes were starting to make it really hard to find the one I was looking for.)

-Rob A>

The-Somberlain
06-05-2008, 11:31 AM
So, first of all thanks for all the replies and suggestions.

You were right about the font, but I was trying to find a font that matches with the feeling and mood of the setting. I tried a new, hope it's not worse! :P

I also corrected the lighting problem of the city/town symbols and added some more mountains in the south.

Finally, I embedded the coat of arms of the kingdom in the upper right corner. I don't know if it fits, but I like it. Note that this is an old coat of arms, my skills have progressed but I hadn't time to make a new one.

That's all I think.

Karro
06-05-2008, 02:25 PM
Yep. Either into the local user profile brushes folder, or the main install brushes folder.

(On that note, I installed python-fu on my computer JUST to get the brush manager extension (http://myweb.msoe.edu/~bogies/brushmanager/). It lets you dynamically activate and deactivate brush sets within gimp. I found that my 100's of grunge, tech and specialty brushes were starting to make it really hard to find the one I was looking for.)

-Rob A>

Cool. I need to look into how to get these various extensions and plugins. I realize that's where some of GIMPS full potential can be found, but I'm still playing with the basic download.


So, first of all thanks for all the replies and suggestions.

You were right about the font, but I was trying to find a font that matches with the feeling and mood of the setting. I tried a new, hope it's not worse! :P

I also corrected the lighting problem of the city/town symbols and added some more mountains in the south.

Finally, I embedded the coat of arms of the kingdom in the upper right corner. I don't know if it fits, but I like it. Note that this is an old coat of arms, my skills have progressed but I hadn't time to make a new one.

That's all I think.

Hey, sorry for the threadjack, there. The map does look good. The new font, I think, is better and more in character. However, it still looks like there's a shadow issue. Note the shadow on the mountains is on the left, whereas the dark side of the city icons is on the right. These look like they're pre-designed icons, so you may not have the ability to change that.

My main thought on the map is how the terrain labels like "The Mountains of Fire" and "The Ashen Forest" are overlayed on a faded out section of the terrain. This doesn't seem terribly realistic to me, because on a hand-drawn and inked map, I don't think this would be possible.

To get a similar effect of a cartographer doing this by hand, you might try leaving a region of the terrain in question empty--blank and showing the parchment background, possibly with hatched edges for a border, and place the label in the emptied region.

I'd also see about trying to make the coat of arms a b&w image, again to match the feeling of the rest of the map. Other than that, it's great.