View Full Version : [CG Choice Map] Skenth - The known world.

09-05-2013, 09:22 PM
I have always loved creating maps and when I took up being a dungeon master I knew I would need a world map and after many months and countless hours of work I have lovingly created this. This world is filled with numerous races, gods, monsters, and magic like many fantasy worlds and I hope my players will really get a kick out of this map and through it become ever more immersed. The world is supposed to be wild with states precariously surrounded by hostile natural and supernatural forces and frequent internal sources of instability.

I am ready to declare it effectively complete though I have yet to print it off. Any changes from this point will be very minor tweaking before I actually print this. I am already working on a new map in fact! :) It is obviously a custom world and I have created ~all~ the elements contained in this map by hand through photoshop with the exception of the fonts I used. They are as follows: Black, Gabriola, and Viking

I have presented the map in three images all of which have been reduced in terms of resolution from the working size to something suited for the Internet and this website.

Here is the entire image, reduced in size out of necessity.

Here is the floating legend I produced.

Here is a relatively close up view of the Kraken's nest where most civilized realms exist.

Edit: I have added a Scale:

The work in progress thread for this can be found here. (http://www.cartographersguild.com/regional-world-mapping/23471-world-skenth-wip.html)

~Prints Available (http://fineartamerica.com/featured/2-the-known-world-of-skenth-pieter-talens.html)~

Please feel free to leave comments!

09-05-2013, 11:29 PM
A masterpiece Viking!


09-05-2013, 11:45 PM
Repped. And.... into the Favorites it goes. Though I believe I've already got at least two wip versions in there. :) Inspiring piece of work, Viking.

So, this new map you speak of... ???

09-06-2013, 01:42 AM
Wow, amazing, I LOVE it! Great job.

09-06-2013, 02:43 AM
Seems like I can't rep anyone today… but liked and rated anyway, and that is one amazing piece. Stunningly amazing. I'd love to see a photo of it once you have it framed on the wall, if you are planning to do that :)

- Max -
09-06-2013, 03:43 AM
Excellent work Viking ! Like Arsheesh said : a masterpiece :)

09-06-2013, 04:36 AM
Excellent work Viking ! Liek Arsheesh said : a masterpiece :)


09-06-2013, 04:38 AM
One of the best maps Ive seen for a long time here! Great work!

09-06-2013, 04:38 AM
Really, really good! I love the little pictures at the frame. And the naming is also very good, my favorite being "The Roaring Gulf"! Congratulations!

09-06-2013, 05:24 AM
gorgeus stuff! only think i can 'fault' is the lack of a scale marker (that i can see) and labels - you list the different city markers in the key but the map is sorey missing any outside of the main continent - im guessing thats largely untamed lands, then? other than that, very nice map (tried to rep though i cant but i added 5 stars in the hopes of getting this as a featured map even if it does mean knocking my map off the front page :) )

09-06-2013, 12:02 PM
Impressive work !

I love the way the waters are done and the coherence in the choice of colors.

09-06-2013, 12:40 PM
Great map! I love the blend of colours in the ocean(s) and the overall position of the islands.

09-06-2013, 02:20 PM
I loved your style from the very first look at your regional map you posted first. This is a piece of art!
One little thing that...detracts...from my enjoyment is that i cannot "un-see" the damn dinosaur that is your biggest continent.

If i can, i'll rep. you.

- Max -
09-06-2013, 02:29 PM
One little thing that...detracts...from my enjoyment is that i cannot "un-see" the damn dinosaur that is your biggest continent.
Really? I see a winged seehorse ;)

09-06-2013, 08:57 PM
You guys are awesome! Thank you so much for the kind words :)

Arsheesh, Max and Sapiento: Thank you so much! About it being a masterpiece... honestly it sounds extravagant but it probably is so far. I don't think I've put more time into another piece of art so far!! lol Just the same thank you guys :D

Chashio: Thank you! It's awesome to think I might inspire other people with my work :) I will post a WIP thread for my new map soon. I am working on the island of Arinthia from this map.

Jaxilon: Thanks!

Lingon: Thankyou :) I don't think I'd mount on a wall but I may post a photo when I get it printed :)

Clercon: Thank you! That's very kind!

Llannagh: Thank you very much! I am pretty happy with the border portraits to be honest. I'm glad I went that length in doing them.

vorropohaiah: Your point about the scale is pretty valid. I thought about it and may still add one. Since it is for DnD travel time seems more important. The only real sense of scale I have is the navigation dots I've added where the space between 2 large dots is 5 days of of steady travel by ship under average conditions and 25 days of 8 to 10 hours of walking. I realized the importance of a scale a little late in the process here sadly.

The unmarked land definitely is untamed or at least not fully known. For story reasons I would say a lot of the south and south east was created off an ancient map carved in stone by an extinct but massive empire where the paint has long ago fallen off and rumours and legends fill in the gaps. The people in the parts with the cities marked would be aware of the south east landmasses in the same way Romans were aware of China but without getting much information. In meta terms I didn't want to nail down a lot of details to give me creative freedom for what to do with the south east and keep some mystery going. At the moment in the world's history civilization has gone through a number of heavy knocks and has receded from its greater expanses with the states being relatively weak.

If this map gets featured I would feel intensely honoured! I'm trying to keep my expectations humble lol.

Ilanthar and Sharpes: Thank you you both! The oceans took a while but it would have felt odd to have the land be so detailed with little detail in the water lol. I tried to make the size and placement of the landmasses dynamic.

Eilathen: Thank you! I definitely will keep producing maps :) Hahahaha, yea I guess the Pterodactyl shaped landmass is a bit flamboyant and explicit. Maybe I shouldn't say so but I tried to work two other landmasses into monster like shapes too but managed to do so with more subtlety I think.

Max: Yea it could look like a winged seahorse too :p

09-09-2013, 11:16 PM
I ended up adding a scale at the bottom. The unit of measurement is based on travel time which is what a lot of traditional measurements are based on anyways and suits my needs pretty well.

09-09-2013, 11:17 PM
So very wonderful in so many ways!

09-10-2013, 02:08 AM
I was going to tell you I like this map, but I noticed a mistake. The text underneath the Coats of Arms, you have 'of' twice in the first line. Completely ruined it for me.

Only joking. Great work, and, if any administrators are watching, I'd happily give this my vote for the Cartographers' Choice.


09-10-2013, 07:28 AM
Just awesome. I think enough people have commented about how great this whole map is. I cannot give you enough praise for all the tiny details (me being a detail oriented person myself), with the heraldry, the little border icons, the compass, etc. All these tiny details take this map one notch higher than most I've seen so far. I could explore it for hours!

Robin Ryuu
09-10-2013, 08:33 AM
Beautiful, of the maps I've seen I must say that this is my favorite. I'm just curious, but do you do commissions?

09-10-2013, 10:23 AM
Maezar: Thank you!

TheHoarseWhisperer: Hahaha, thank you for pointing that out! Thank you for the high praise! I love your name by the way. I've updated all the maps on the front page just to rectify my grievous error :P

Veluux: You're very kind! Thank you for your comments! It is nice to have all the work appreciated :)

Robin: Thank you so much, that's really nice to hear! I have in the past for portraits and other artwork but not yet for a map. I would take them on so maybe this will lead to some!

09-11-2013, 04:56 AM
Amazing work! repped! :)

09-11-2013, 07:58 PM
Thank you fifty!

09-12-2013, 12:43 PM
Hey all,

I've been visiting the CG on and off, but now I actually had to register, just to say what a beautiful, wonderful map you have created there. I'm already wondering how I could possibly build a D&D campaign on this. ^^

Two questions:
1. I'm afraid I don't quite understand the scale. I see two scales, and can't decide which of them describe those standard leagues. Also, a conversion to our miles or km would be appreciated, so I can figure out climate zones and suchlike.
2. Would you consider giving out this map in a printable format? I am actually considering having this done at a print shop.

Thanks and keep up the good work. =)

09-12-2013, 09:40 PM
Hi Skinir,

Thank you so much for the compliments! Also thank you for pointing my attention to the scale again. I've fixed it up a bit but essentially a league is equal to about 125 miles with 4 leagues being about 500 miles. I prefer simpler "league" system as it is far more meaningful for me as the DM to know how far a party can travel in a day than the actual distance :) Interesting fact: the roman mile was based on the distance of a 1000 paces :P

I have no current plans to release a printable version of this map. I would be happy to print off a copy and send it to someone if they were willing to pay for it and the shipping cost though. I may organize something online somewhere or one day print a small booklet with a number of my maps from the same setting.

With best regards,

09-13-2013, 03:47 AM
Ah, I understand now. So the edge length of the grid is about 15 days of sea travel, or 3000km. Dude, that's huge! So the map is a full world map, and the planet is about 20% bigger than earth (equatorial circumference, 48000km). Was that your intention?

Some other questions:
- can you give us some pointers to the intended climate zones? For example, what are the "Golden Plains" comparable to?
- do the different colours of the land masses reflect elevation or vegetation?
- how massive are the mountain ranges supposed to be?

I suppose, if I end up using it, I'd cut down the scale to ~1000km edge length, so it wouldn't be a full world map. So climate-wise, Yoria would roughly correspond to Scandinavia, and Madenska to central Europe and the Mediterranean.

As for shipping a printout, I may be interested, if the shipping cost to Europe doesn't get too crazy. Well, we'll see, we'd have to discuss the details, no hurry though. =)

09-13-2013, 10:26 AM
alright, this map made me say sorry to all my friends and the monsters of CG. I loved all style ( saving the fonts, that is a completely personal touch), the colors, shape, descriptions... this map is a thing that make my eyes shine, probly is the best map that i saw in my life.

I am subscribing in this thread, coz i am sure that i will use your map in my style development.

Last words: thank you for draw it Vik, and thanx to make me able to see new points in my learning horizon.

09-16-2013, 12:06 AM
Truly amazing piece! Well done sir!

09-16-2013, 10:12 AM

The edge of a grid square at the moment currently actually is 3.5 leagues so 3.5 days of travel by ship. I essentially used some historical tools to figure out how walking and sailing usually compared timewise over long distances. Often it would average out that a ship on the long run would travel 7 times as far over the same time period as walking but I rounded it down to five. This is due to a ship being able to travel 24 hours a day I guess while people need considerably more rest I suppose so that assumption is made they might only walk for eight hours on a day without compromising their ability to walk the next day. I consulted the link found here about reconstructed travel times in ancient Rome. In D&D the standard distance a character can cover is 25 to 30 miles so I just made it 25. That's how I got to the 25/day by foot and since I determined ships go five times as far thus the 125 miles. A nicer round number would be 20miles/day and 100 miles/day respectively of course. Next time I make a world I may use more conventional distances but I'll stick with this metric for this world. I may rework for the grid to make each square correspond to five leagues.

Climatewise I tried to make the map feel similar as to how you'd describe with Yoria being like Scandanavia and Madenska more like southern Europe, Mediterranean and a little bit like the middle east in climate. Ostrothlia is somewhere closer to northern Europe on the south west side. I imagine warm ocean currents come up into the moon and sword sea while cold currents come down east and west side of Yoria from the Frost Sea. Overall the maps climate is not strictly modelled. The desert on the east side of the gullet sea on Kawthra doesn't really make too much sense for instance. If I were to do it again, I'd make the south east of Madenska and all of Dorpentr little drier overall and I still may. I have a bias towards woodlands and greenery I need to counter consciously lol.

The golden plains would compare to a warmer version of the prairies or like a cooler savanah. Colouration reflefts vegetation and not altitude. The mountain ranges are probably a bit exaggerated in terms of height.

Shipping costs across the Atlantic totally do get a little crazy :( I'm still trying to figure out something lol.

Thank you so much! I'm really flattered :) I'm honoured I could inspire you so! :)

Thank you so much!

09-16-2013, 01:18 PM
Greetings again Viking, thanks for the heads-up!

So I just misread the scale previously -- by your reckoning the grid size is 700km. Yes that makes more sense than 3000. ;)
As for the weather system, I could totally imagine a permanent Low centered right on the Kraken's Nest. Which would mean Yoria gets hosed with Arctic winds (resulting in colder climate than Scandinavia), Madenska is more blessed with warmer westerlies, and Ostrothlia might be way than you might think thanks to predominantly southern winds. Just a thought.

As for map prints, I'd be specifically interested in the Kraken's Nest area, i.e. roughly A-1 to H-11, printed on vinyl or similarly durable material. Maybe we can arrange something with a print shop in Germany? I don't mean to be a pain, though, so no need to rush anything, and please don't feel compelled to do anything you're not comfortable with. =)

Keep up the good work! ^^

09-17-2013, 03:42 PM
Yea that sort of climate arrangement also makes a good bit of sense! Its awesome you are so interested in my map. I'll give you a PM!

09-17-2013, 06:29 PM
Ah right, I think I need to make a 5th post before my PN function activates. There, it's done. =D

09-18-2013, 06:17 AM
Hi guys,

Hey guys, I must say that this is one of the most beautiful maps I've ever seen in my life, and, at my age, I've seen a lot of maps. A gorgeous work of art.

I'm running a Pathfinder campaign set in Middle-earth on one of the RPG forums, and your map has given me not only goose-bumps, but inspiration for starting a whole new campaign based on your map and kingdoms, if, Sir, I could have your permission to do so.

I'm not trying to be a know-it-all or anything, but I looked up "league" in the dictionary and it said that a league can be anywhere from 2.4 to 4.6 statute miles, depending on which country you're referencing. Also, I've read where 1 league equals the distance an average person can walk in 1 hour, which would be approximately 3 miles, and averaging the dictionary's two distances out, that would seem to be correct. So, dividing any "mileage" distance by 3 would give you the "league" distance. It's what I use in my campaign. Hope this helps.


Justin Russell
09-18-2013, 04:45 PM
Really amazing. I hope I can one day achieve a work of art made with this quality and detail.

09-19-2013, 10:06 AM
Thank you Justin! It just takes a lot of time and practice I guess :)

Thank you John!
You're very kind and I'm glad you appreciate the map! I just made up the Madenskan league to suit what I wanted to use the map from. I recognize it is kind of an awkward measurement which would only see much use in large distances. The story goes that the league was the distance between two points that an emporer's flagship was able to travel in a 24 hours which it later took one of his land armies five days to travel. Perhaps in future maps I will use a more traditional and usable league like you've suggested.

If you are happy to use the images at the size I've provided them here I grant you permission to do so for your online campaign so long as you use it for non-commercial purposes of course! :) I also would really love to follow a long if you could provide a link perhaps! If you want I can give you a rough overview of what I had in mind for the setting as I was producing it. I would just hold off using the map as I need to make a few slight updates.

09-21-2013, 08:16 PM
i not found in you WIP how you get so amazing colors for the ocean, coasts and the surface :(

09-22-2013, 12:35 PM
I have presented the map in three images all of which have been reduced in terms of resolution from the working size to something suited for the Internet and this website.

Is there any way you could give us a link to a full resolution version of this map? It's so beautiful and it's a shame we cannot fully appreciate all the details together.

09-24-2013, 02:00 AM
Aquartis: I may try to make a painting guide at some point. Colour choice comes from experience but one thing I can say is that it is good to avoid overly saturated colours and play with the medium and less saturated values and hues. Also, shadows contain colour so many of the mountains do not have purely black shadows but have colours in them. That is true for most of the shading actually.

Almajis: Hi Almajis, thank you! I don't have any current plans to release a full resolution version of this map online freely though I may try selling some prints. :)

09-24-2013, 08:02 PM
I may try to make a painting guide at some point.


09-25-2013, 09:19 AM
Oh my, this is an amazing work of art. Well done!

09-29-2013, 02:10 PM
Thanks Salama! :)

Aquarits: :)

10-16-2013, 11:30 AM
Saw this beauty on the splash page, and had to stop by to leave rep & kudos.

10-18-2013, 01:44 AM
Thanks Toff! :)

fabio p
10-18-2013, 12:33 PM
I really like the frame and the drawings in it, as well as the shields of individual nations.
I think for this pictorial style and as you show a great ability to draw, it might be nice if the cities were represented by tridimensional icons.

10-30-2013, 10:14 AM
Stunning! Fantastic! The landmasses really have an dragonlike touch, it looks so organic and yet fantastic, great work!

11-22-2013, 03:43 AM
My jaw has hit the ground!


Just wow!

Blaidd Drwg
12-27-2013, 08:48 PM
Wowsers, truly a masterpiece! _O_
The CC award is well-deserved. Congrats!

01-08-2014, 08:15 PM
Thank you guys! :)

Fabio: Having city icons definitely is something to explore!

01-27-2014, 12:42 PM
Wonderfull work !
Congratulations !

02-12-2014, 09:46 PM
This map is the reason I register. Breath taking work. I wish I had the time, devotion, and talent to create such a masterpiece.
Keep it up!

02-28-2014, 08:07 PM
Thank you Planemaster!

Thank you DeathsVisage :)

03-13-2014, 07:48 PM
That's a really beautiful map.

03-14-2014, 04:11 PM
Thank you xpian!

Matt Chesser
03-18-2014, 11:33 PM
Amazing map.

04-24-2014, 09:38 AM
Thanks Matt!

Alex Clark
08-12-2014, 11:35 AM
Awesome world map.

08-15-2014, 06:21 AM
Waaaaow, amazing map. I just love your colors.

08-23-2014, 01:13 PM
Thank you Alex!
Thanks Catubodua!

08-28-2014, 03:37 PM
This is just strikingly amazing. Absolutely wonderful - and I love all the crests/heraldry you put into it as well. Bravo!

09-04-2014, 06:08 AM
That map is awesome, I was wondering though if it was possible to get a 1:1 scale digital image. I would love to be able to use that map for my DnD campaign!

09-25-2014, 12:03 AM
Tux The enguin: Thank you guy so much! I am glad the effort put into those is appreciated. :)

Kspn: Thank you so much! Such an image is currently not available I am afraid!

10-18-2014, 12:28 PM
That's pretty astounding. I love maps with this style which give all the biomes their own personality.

10-19-2014, 01:36 AM
Love how you did those mountains, absolutely stunning.

11-04-2014, 09:13 PM
Thank you guys! :)

Charles Chaplin
01-20-2015, 11:37 AM
Excelent map.

04-01-2015, 11:15 PM
Thanks Charles!

04-03-2015, 03:49 AM
hi there! that map looks amazing! congrats! as a historian i especially love the heraldry :) how did you create the emblems?

04-05-2015, 01:21 PM
Hi Rauvin! Thank you so much! I did it all in photoshop using different layers. Essentially I made the "frame" first, which itself was a few different layers and then I merged them into the frame. I also made a layer underneath that which was essentially the face of the shield which would be under the frame. This under layer I put transparency lock on it. I then put the two layers in a folder and duplicated them many times as necessary. These folders were inside a heraldry folder themselves. For each design I had a layer in each subfolder that fit between the frame and the shield itself on which I drew the insignia as desired. I then just painted on the shield layer for each heraldric icon and since it has transparency lock on it I could paint with abandon. I hope that helps!