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Wiltrichs
01-02-2014, 07:16 AM
Hi all,

I joined yesterday so thought I'd jump right in and have a go myself. I was looking through some old fantasy books last night for some inspiration and this sketch fell out, I must have drawn it about 15 years ago and forgotten about it. I thought it would be a cool place to start.... with a LOT of improvement. I am really new to all this so will appreciate any help and advice you guys can offer as I go. I'm trying to create a world for the wargaming fantasy miniature company I am in the process of starting up.

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I was looking through some of the sticky tutorials on here last night and I can see my rivers are pretty awful and go against many of the pointers in the threads, so will need to sort that out. I'm sure there are a lot more mistakes in there too, so please point them out.

I apologise for the unimaginative sea names, they will also be going :)

I'm going to be using Photoshop to create this map. I'm not that experienced at using the software, so I've just scanned it in as a jpeg at 600DPI so I can trace over it. Does that sound right or are there better ways to scan images in?

Anyway, I've got a day off today so will post some more WIP pics later this evening.... hopefully.

Cheers

Wil

schattentanz
01-02-2014, 08:40 AM
Hi Will :)

The first impression of your map is great; one concern about the names, though:
"Ustria" is similar to "Lustria", and "Cadia" well ... is "Cadia"; "Lustria" as well as "Cadia" are names from a certain gaming company known to threaten others in a very agressive way for far less.
So unless you are working for them (which I doubt), well ... just watch out ...



Anyway: welcome to the guild and kind regards,
Kai

Wiltrichs
01-02-2014, 08:59 AM
Hi Kai,

lol yeah I agree with all of that, I think at the time I was trying to make a map for some campaign for my army, from that gaming company or something like that but never did anything with it. I'll delete them now in PS and try and come up with a better name for the world.

Are there any tips for coming up with realistic sounding fantasy worlds? There are some great ones on here.

Cheers

Wil

Kyha
01-02-2014, 11:32 AM
Well done! Your map looks great.

Wiltrichs
01-02-2014, 11:45 AM
Thanks Kyha! I'm struggling with Photoshop at the moment but still hoping to get another update on this evening... at some point :)

schattentanz
01-03-2014, 07:56 AM
Hi Kai,

lol yeah I agree with all of that, I think at the time I was trying to make a map for some campaign for my army, from that gaming company or something like that but never did anything with it. I'll delete them now in PS and try and come up with a better name for the world.

Are there any tips for coming up with realistic sounding fantasy worlds? There are some great ones on here.

Cheers

Wil

In fact, there are:

A nice trick is to look around while mapping and taking the names of stuff from things lying around you and playing with those names unless they fit.
E.g. a manual about SQL became the patron for the elvish forest of Aes'Qulia.

Other tricks are using online translators translating words into "weird" languages such as Latin or even Sanskrit.
Btw: Looking around in German landscapes, there are a lot of "Fantasy" names as well: Schwarzwald, Vogtland, Elbmarsch. Not sure about names in other countries, though ...



Kind regards,
Kai

Wiltrichs
01-03-2014, 02:04 PM
Thanks a lot for that Kai!

Right I'm struggling :) so here is a little update to show where I've got to.

I though I'd try and use some grunge textures for the background. But I've been watching loads of videos on youtube and I think I've started to confuse myself with all the different techniques etc. so thought I'd ask for some comments from you guys. I'm only working on the bottom left hand corner of the image I posted yesterday, just so I can practice.

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I used a small soft round brush 3px 0% hardness to trace around the original drawing. I've got a problem where the land colour seems to go past the black line into the area of the sea. I'm not sure if this is because I'm using too soft a brush maybe?

Here is my layering so far. I've put each texture on its own layer, then the coastline and block colours on its own layer too. I've adjusted the opacity of each layer to get this result.
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All comments welcome!

Cheers

Wil

HBrown
01-03-2014, 02:14 PM
In fact, there are:

A nice trick is to look around while mapping and taking the names of stuff from things lying around you and playing with those names unless they fit.
E.g. a manual about SQL became the patron for the elvish forest of Aes'Qulia.

Other tricks are using online translators translating words into "weird" languages such as Latin or even Sanskrit.
Btw: Looking around in German landscapes, there are a lot of "Fantasy" names as well: Schwarzwald, Vogtland, Elbmarsch. Not sure about names in other countries, though ...



Kind regards,
Kai

Along the same lines, the Spanish word for shoe (zapato) became the name of a country (Jhaipat) on a friend's map. We referred to it as 'shoe-land'.

Wiltrichs
01-04-2014, 10:43 AM
Thanks HBrown!

I've redone the sea after watching a couple of video tutorials for textures, I've also had to redo the coastline slightly.

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I've think I've done this correctly, I used the magic wand tool to select the sea and then inverted it and filled the land areas with the paper pattern. Is this the best way to do it?

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I've added a 1px black stroke on the outside of the land.

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All comments and help appreciated!

Cheers
Wil

Wiltrichs
01-04-2014, 02:15 PM
Sorry for the double post, but have been wrestling with rhumbs all evening, so just wanted to post the latest WIP. I found a template made by Gidde in the 'how to' section so have used his. Thanks Gidde! :)

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Diamond
01-04-2014, 03:36 PM
That's shaping up pretty nicely; have some rep for jumping right in with a map.

That softer brown inner stroke on the landmasses works really well with the starker black outline.

Diamond
01-04-2014, 06:47 PM
Here's that mini-tut I promised you, Wiltrichs: Coastlines and Coastal Rings (http://www.cartographersguild.com/tutorials-how/25727-smooth-coastlines-concentric-coastal-rings.html#post232677).

Wiltrichs
01-04-2014, 06:52 PM
That is awesome Diamond! Thank you very much, I'll have a go first thing in the morning and thanks for the kind words on the map so far! :)

Wiltrichs
01-05-2014, 07:06 AM
Here is a small update after following Diamond's coastal ring tutorial

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Does anyone know how to change the colour of the rhumb lines? I've overlaid them on their own layer and they are black, I'm not too experienced at Photoshop. I'd like to make them a dark blue to contrast with the sea colour.

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Salama
01-05-2014, 07:25 AM
This is shaping up nicely!

One way is to select the layer content by holding ctrl and clicking on the layer thumbnail, then you can for example make a new solid color fill layer (the black&white circle in the bottom of the layer window) in any color you want.

EDIT: Realized that in newer versions the fill layer button might be on top of the layer window.

Wiltrichs
01-05-2014, 07:39 AM
Thanks a lot Salama, that worked a treat! Next I was going to try and dirty up the map a little, looking at some of the great examples on here I think mine looks too clean for an old map :)

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Ilanthar
01-05-2014, 08:40 AM
Good job, your map looks promising!

Wiltrichs
01-05-2014, 11:13 AM
Thanks Ilanthar!
I'm trying to place the mountains next and I'm using a brush set from deviantart at the moment just to practice. I read a tutorial somewhere on how to make the brush cover up the detail below, so you can overlap them without it becoming a huge mess.... but can't find it now. Does anyone know the one I'm talking about or can tell me how to do it?
Cheers Wiltrichs

Wiltrichs
01-05-2014, 02:05 PM
After reading some WIP threads I've been playing around with Luminosity of the sea textures and its made it a much darker colour which is what I am looking for. It was a bit mediterranean for the world I'm making it for. :)

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But for some reason I am really struggling to do anything with the land, it might be the way I've set it all up but I would like to add some textures around the edge and make it a bit more interesting but can't seem to do it.... stuck! :(

I've added a shot of my layers below just in case someone can see a problem in how I've put it all together.

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Cheers
Wiltrichs

Salama
01-05-2014, 04:18 PM
Looking great! Have you considered to add all the features on the land before texturing or dirtying it up? I tend to add all the mountains, forests, lakes, rivers, etc. first, and then see if the map needs any further texturing.

Ilanthar
01-06-2014, 08:18 AM
The marble blue effect on your seas is nice, but I think it contrasts way too much with the lands (imo). So, if you keep it, you really have to find a way to change the lands to match them to the waters.
By darkening the lands or applying a similar treatment perhaps?

Wiltrichs
01-06-2014, 09:03 AM
Cheers both! Yeah the land needed changing, I was having a bit of a mental block yesterday and couldn't see how to apply the textures to just the land (still pretty new to PS). But I've added a few layers as clipping masks with different colours and textures. I wasn't really sure where I was going with it but here it is as it looks at the moment. What do you guys think?

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Added some more colours so the green wasn't so bright.

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- Max -
01-06-2014, 09:45 AM
Depending on which way you're going to do the geographic features, your textures on sea/lands might be too heavy for the map. I'd also avoid the bright white outerglow on the land shape to prefer a light blue one.

Wiltrichs
01-06-2014, 10:01 AM
[sorry double post]

Wiltrichs
01-06-2014, 10:41 AM
Thanks a lot Max! I was going to use the mountain and tree brush packs from deviantart, I'll have a go at drawing my own eventually but just practicing at the moment. I'm having trouble overlapping the mountain and tree brushes though, the detail shows through. I'm sure I saw a tutorial on here, but now I need it I can't find it again haha

I've had a play around with the map and toned down the textures on both the land and the sea, also changed the bright glow around the coast. Hope you like :)

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Ilanthar
01-06-2014, 11:35 AM
Yep, that's definitely better!

Diamond
01-06-2014, 01:56 PM
I'm going to be the voice of dissent and say that I actually really like the darker green land with the white outer glow; it had a lot of character. I agree with Max though in that it might be hard to make geographic features show up against that dark color. I do like it a lot though.

Wiltrichs
01-06-2014, 04:59 PM
Thanks all, here is another little update with some mountains added. I want to draw my own mountain brushes for the full map, but just want to practice the technique of placing them and colouring them etc. using the free brush sets for the time being. I still can't get them to overlap without the detail from the mountain below showing through so I've carefully placed them not to overlap for the time being. Does anyone know how its done?
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- Max -
01-06-2014, 05:44 PM
Since you'ee using brushes, you can't avoid overlapping. You can do the way you did or put each brush on a separate layer to build ranges, then erase all the overlapping parts and then merge your layers when it's done. Quite time consuming...

Wiltrichs
01-06-2014, 06:00 PM
Thanks Max! I'll give that a go :)

Caenwyr
01-07-2014, 02:34 AM
Actually, instead of using brushes, you could create a base document on which you draw all your mountains one next to the other. On the layer below, you paint the inside of the mountains with white, and then you merge the two layers together. That way you won't see the hidden details of the first mountain when you put a second mountain over it top. Afterwards, when your entire mountain range is done, you can just "colour to alpha" the white out of the layer and what you're left with is a nice black outline without any overlap issues.

Wiltrichs
01-07-2014, 02:31 PM
A little bit of an update, just been playing around adding some colour to the mountains.

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Wiltrichs
01-08-2014, 03:16 PM
Another update, I've been playing around trying to get to grips with adding text on a path.... need some practice still. Also quickly added some settlements, roads, boarders and forests to start figuring out what colours will work best. What do you think?

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Diamond
01-08-2014, 05:04 PM
Great job with those colors; subtle but effective. One nitpick: I think it's a 'strait' if it's a body of water, 'straight' if it's a line.

Wiltrichs
01-08-2014, 05:44 PM
Doh! :) Thanks Diamond glad you like it. Time to try it all on the full map now... hope I can remember everything lol thanks for everyone's help so far.

foremost
01-08-2014, 09:22 PM
Yeah, I would agree those colors fit quite well.
Consider making the text a less-bright white
(or semi-transparent (barely)) to eliminate any
glow.

Your mountains are great. I look forward
to following this project :)

Wiltrichs
01-09-2014, 01:33 PM
Thanks Foremost!
When I'm setting up the full size map, I've read it has to be 300DPI for printing but Photoshop settings is PPI, how do you allow for this? Also should it be CMYK 8bit too, just in case I want it printed in the future? When I did the one above I used RGB.
Cheers
Wil

- Max -
01-09-2014, 02:06 PM
CYMK is the usual color format for prints.

rgcalsaverini
01-12-2014, 05:14 PM
@Caenwyr: Great advice, thanks that will solve many problems!

Salama
01-16-2014, 04:40 AM
All the advices regarding print are correct here, I'll just add that it's best to finish your work in RGB and then convert it to cmyk. With RGB you'll be able to use more filters etc. Just keep in mind that when converting to cmyk your colors might change a bit. I usually do the conversion in Photoshop via edit -> convert to profile, and select general cmyk profile, unless I know what color profile the printer is going to use. Also, converting to cmyk via convert to profile will flatten your layers, so save it in a different psd file first. 300 pixels per inch is good.

Wiltrichs
01-16-2014, 06:01 AM
Thanks for the help on print guys! Work has been a bit hectic this last week or so, so haven't done much on this but I will get some updates on the full map this weekend :)