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jontiben
05-18-2013, 04:23 PM
Hello. I've been looking at this forum for a couple of days, and it seems like a good place to get the advice of experienced people on my first map. I have just spent three months working on a detailed map of Europe in the year 1300 (see below), and have finally finished it. The problem is, it definitely does NOT look like a professional map (though that is not surprising as I did it in MS Paint). Any ideas on how to make it look like a "real" map (And I know I'm going to have to label it)? Keep in mind that I am not willing to purchase photoshop, and the most advanced editing program I'll be using will probably be GIMP.

54693

Diamond
05-18-2013, 06:20 PM
First, welcome to the CG and have some rep for posting a map right off the bat.

As far as a 'professional map', it depends on what you mean by professional. I've seen maps in just your style used in online atlases, and in print, and they look fine and are definitely functional. It depends on what you want the map to do; is it purely a political map? Then I'd say label everything (depending on the level of detail you want, that could be only country names, or everything down to the smallest political units and towns) and call it done. If you're showing industry or trade, you might want to purchase or create some icons to use that represent sheep or timber, or universities, or banks, etc to place. If you're showing wars, you would probably want to tone down the color scheme significantly since it would most likely distract from what you're trying to represent. It really depends on what your ultimate goal is here. I will say that's one of the best Paint maps I've seen in a long while.

jontiben
05-19-2013, 04:30 PM
Thank you!
I should have clarified. By "professional", I meant something like this:
54722
(Grand Duchy of Karameikos (http://http://www.cartographersguild.com/finished-maps/23406-grnd-duchy-karameikos.html#post216172))
Specifically, I mean to make it look like it's on real paper, hand-drawn in the middle ages, etcetera.
In the mean time, I will act on your suggestions.

Hai-Etlik
05-20-2013, 10:26 PM
Thank you!
I should have clarified. By "professional", I meant something like this:
54722
(Grand Duchy of Karameikos (http://http://www.cartographersguild.com/finished-maps/23406-grnd-duchy-karameikos.html#post216172))
Specifically, I mean to make it look like it's on real paper, hand-drawn in the middle ages, etcetera.
In the mean time, I will act on your suggestions.

A real map from the middle ages (not that there were many maps made then) would barely be recognizable to modern viewers as even being a map while something that looks like what a modern viewer unfamiliaar with the history of maps would expect a medieval map to look like (as in your example), would be completely anachronistic.

jontiben
05-21-2013, 05:47 PM
True, but that's not what I mean. I mean a map that looks like it's made on parchment. I have no idea whatsoever how to even start doing that.