View Full Version : September Entry: Rackham Gap

09-03-2008, 08:45 PM
You know I couldn't let a challenge like this slip by, even though you are all quite familiar with my style by now. I spent 2 night getting the landmasses "just so"...mainly just experimenting with some techniques (all of which I discarded). Spent about an hour putting the topography together and another whole night experimenting with rivers. This is where I'm at, still much to do and I might change it all up in the end to a unique parchment style that I use. I'm still not all that impressed with these rivers since they're either wider or thinner than what I'm used to doing. Me, my 8 year old mouse, 8 year old pc, and Photoshop CS. Anywho give her a look.

### Latest WIP ###

09-03-2008, 10:15 PM
Oh this is nice! You always do a killer job with mountains. I also really like the rich colors you use for the water/land. Great job as always.

This month is going to be a tough vote! :lol:

Steel General
09-03-2008, 11:31 PM
Looking good so far. I must admit that I really don't care to much for the day-glow skulls, but that's just me. :)

09-04-2008, 01:24 AM
I didn't care too much for them either, they were just to get me into a piratey mood. Small update, got the labeling done. Mostly pirate names, except the cities, lakes, and rivers which are current soccer players of the respective flag/country (Spain, France, Netherlands, England, Portugal, and USA).

### Latest WIP ###

09-07-2008, 01:16 PM
Wow, what a fantastic map :o The only thing that I could say needs work are the rivers, which look kind of plain next to that gorgeous landscape and water.

09-07-2008, 02:39 PM
I really like the use of the flags!

-Rob A>

09-07-2008, 02:45 PM
Did you touch up the mountains at all? ... Cause they look like mountains today, maybe I was just hallucinating the other day...

Love the flags... espcially love that coastal effect you got going on there.... that is really spectacular...

I don't think anyone has noticed my names of my rivers... I was waiting for someone to spot it ... but maybe not... might as well have fun with it tho, right? :D

Great Job... keep it up

09-08-2008, 12:03 AM
Actually, I haven't even touched it for about 3 or 4 days, whenever the last update was, until this morning when I turned the whole thing into an "old style parchment" for fun. Still have some more work to do but I'm, uh, pacing myself, 'cuz weekends are all about football (pro, college, and futbol). Not sure which style I'll finally submit but I'd feel "dirty" if I didn't use my main style on a contest about style (even if it does look like a lot of the other submissions) :)

09-08-2008, 02:14 AM
The both look good in there on way. Be interesting to see which is you final submission.

09-08-2008, 09:05 PM
I decided to kick it up a notch with more interesting forests and swamps. Got some lil work to do with the rivers still then the finish graphics. Might turn the flags into 3d flagpoles "stuck" into the map as pushpins but haven't decided.
### Latest WIP ###

09-12-2008, 11:49 AM
Ooooooo... I really like this one! I love the textures and overall feel of it. I really like the swamps and the earth under the water, however, if I could make one suggestion, it would to make the glow less. It almost appears as if there is a light on.

Also, it is a bit tough to tell the difference between the forests and the swamps - the textures look a bit too similar.

Fantastic map though! Bravo!

09-12-2008, 04:07 PM
I thought the same thing about the swamps, I'm trying to add some "blue-ish-ness" to it somehow. I used the same exact layer styles for the forest and swamps except some more blue color in various places. I'm still experimenting on them, maybe incorporate some filters instead of styles. What I'm trying to get is something that has little blue squiggles surrounded by a dark greenish blue, but at the same time still be able to see that river flowing through it, without either being too bright or too muddled.

09-12-2008, 08:33 PM
Here's an update...I really like where this one is and am ready to put the finish graphics on it unless I've overlooked something.
What I've tweaked:
1) Worked some more on the rivers (lightened them just a tad in some places, darker in others).
2) Total rework of the swamps, splitting them into a marsh (in the north) and a swamp (total rework of the layer styles as well).
3) Removed the glow and strokes on the text and changed the colors to quasi-blend into the terrain and still be legible (at 100% zoom).
4) My textured forests and wetlands made the land look kinda naked so I added a layer of bushes to cover it up a bit.

Not sure if I want to add things like borders and roads and stuff like that because I haven't found a way to do that yet that doesn't detract from the artwork.

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09-14-2008, 10:35 PM
Da Gap ;) iz now opin fer yer bizness. By dat I meen owr bizness. Bring yer spyces, tobaco, and fruts. Bring yer licker, yer wimmen, an yer guns. Bring anyting ya want and weel do owr best to take it off yer handz at a fare pryce. Tink yer brayv enuff? Weel find owt.


This one be done. I'm not much of a graphic designer so the frame and graphics are just kinda average. I put in roads, sea lanes, borders, a 5-mile grid for land distances and 5-mile circular grid for sea distances. The size of the map itself 4000 X 4000 so every 40 pixels is a mile. If my math is right (which it rarely is) then each pixel = 66 feet. Not sure I could put in semi-detailed cities at that scale. I might try in the future and if I get it done before the deadline I'll upload it. If anyone wants this map without labels and graphics (so you can add your own) let me know as I have the topography in its own image and I will keep this file on hand for a month or so.
###Latest WIP ###

09-17-2008, 01:17 AM
Oh, P.S. - here's a list of the things I didn't create: the corner scrolly bit doohickies are a Photoshop custom shape from a set called "fancy borders", the banner thingy is from a brush set called "17th century boy" both from the Adobe Exchange, the compass is from the compass pack I got from here (can't find the link though), the font is called "Tagliente", and the flags come from flags.net. So, uh, I guess I really didn't create all that much after all, just the map. Maybe I should fix that and redo all the borrowed bits.

Steel General
09-17-2008, 10:08 AM
Other than it being a bit dark (which I always say about your maps :D), this is really well done, love the forest texture.

09-17-2008, 12:00 PM
Here's a lighter one. I think it washes the colors out a bit but c'est la vie. Everyone seems to have a hard time seeing my stuff no matter how much I tweak my monitor so I just added a layer of white, 50% opacity, and set to soft light.

###Latest WIP ###

09-17-2008, 02:07 PM
Here's a lighter one. I think it washes the colors out a bit but c'est la vie. Everyone seems to have a hard time seeing my stuff no matter how much I tweak my monitor so I just added a layer of white, 50% opacity, and set to soft light.

Are you on a mac? make sure you set your colourspace to sRGB for saving, this should make it the right brightness. Historically there was a big difference in monitor gamma (1.8 for macs vs. 2.2 for pcs) but that should be going away. I think now colourspace is the biggie for explaining big differences in image brightness.

-Rob A>

09-17-2008, 09:25 PM
Mac, no...I got snagged by the delicious pizza instead.

09-25-2008, 02:44 AM
Love the page tiling and the water effects. This is one fine map.