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View Full Version : September Entry: A'Jhn Empire



delgondahntelius
09-05-2008, 01:18 AM
Rise of the A'Jhn Empire and Fall of the Jhl-Gari -- a snap shot in time. The last remnants of the demon worshippers who plagued the land for a thousand years was beaten back into the jungle wilderness and all but forgotten. The A'Jhn arrived from across the sea of Dhamilla, conquering a long decadent society, whose very slaves revolted and turned on their cruel masters. The Jhl-Gari were a powerbase that held few, and controlled by fear. Once their hold crumbled on their enslaved subjects... they crumbled beneath the might boot of A'Jhn armies.
--

Well that was completely off the cuff... and it shows... bleh. Here is a hand drawn WiP I did last night. I'm sure the first thing you will notice is that yes... it is sideways... The land looked and placement pleased my eye more from this angle, I'm hoping I didn't take too liberal of a choice in this matter, I'm not sure I want to start it over again.. for a third time :D

I inked the whole thing by hand, labels and all, but i'm thinking I may take those out and do them digitally. I used dip pens for the costlines and outlines of the mountains, and it really shows on the scan. I had more shading to do with teh forest and jungles, but eventhe central forest shows up really light in contrast with the coast, rivers and mountains. I still have the water line to put around the coasts, among other things...

My tablet should finally arrive tomorrow or the next day!!! OMG its been hard living without one for a whole three weeks.... it was like losing an arm or a hand... or a precious human baby...

So I thought I would get some opinions first... I'm going to need them with so many great entries this month...

The original drawing was 8"x8" and scanned in at 200dpi ... (8 inches because that was about the maximum my scanner will scan at)

Thanks guys and gals... :D

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Gamerprinter
09-05-2008, 01:40 AM
Its good to see another hand-drawn entry, Del and a nice one at that!

I agree your "scrawl" kind of jars with the map. One suggestion would be to use light pencil guidelines, have some caligraphic or other letter style to reference, and take your time to hand draw your lettering with the same patience you have with the rest of your map. Do this on a separate sheet of paper.

Erase the pencil lines, scan them in, then rescale to fit and digitally place them on your map - as if they were hand-drawn on the same original scan at the same time.

I seriously considered to hand created text, but when I came up with the idea to use the slanted descriptive text, I thought - whoa that makes for lots of writing. So I chose to go digital.

You have few enough labels, that you could do it all by hand.

Something to consider, anyway.

GP

PS: oh, the challenge requires north to point a specific direction. Turning your map on its side works for me, but I think you still need a compass rose with north pointing about 2:00 - just to qualify with the challenge rules.

delgondahntelius
09-05-2008, 02:08 AM
there is a light compass pointing in that direction .... in pencil... below the sea of dahmilla text...

That's the thing... since i basically have over twice the area digitally ... I could add more labels... I was all into naming things.... but as you can see, I started runnning out of room quickly. No matter how hard I try to slow down and carefully print my letters (the labels, are pretty much how I write everything, except... its neater on the map.. if you can believe that) I just end up forgetting and then remembering far too late that I wasn't just scrawling names randomly .... that and its actually a bit harder to write with a kohinoor .18mm pen and keep it neat, uniform and properly spaced.

I'm going to try that scanning tip right now... for my handwriting. I know you've probably even gave me that tip before in some manner or another... one day, I may even realize that we live in an age where you don't have to cramp your hand up drawing small thatched shadows for a better looking mountain .... (Oh... those mountains were inspired by the ones you changed up in your entry, GP... a random crosshatch to shade them with) ... :D

Valarian
09-05-2008, 09:08 AM
I like how you've turned the map around. It does make the map stand out among the others as different, and the challenge is about individuality.

Torq
09-05-2008, 10:15 AM
I think this map is great Del. Original, clever and striking in its look and feel. I love it.

Torq

Steel General
09-05-2008, 03:46 PM
Cool idea rotating the map :idea:, looking forward to seeing more.

jfrazierjr
09-05-2008, 03:52 PM
Damn.. You stole my idea! I guess I need to wait until I get an answer from the other thread on my other idea...

Ascension
09-05-2008, 05:00 PM
All I can do is add another heaping helping of praise...sweet map!

delgondahntelius
09-06-2008, 01:39 AM
Thanks to all of you, sorry jojo ... didn't mean to steal yer idea... you can steal any idea you want in the future :D

I took the map and got rid of my scrawl. I started scanning in some neater handwriting to put on it ... but after a while I realized it was going to take _way_ to long, a lot longer than I want or need to take, So I just started adding text via PS.

I fixed my scale and added a compass, as well as making the background pure white.

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My Wacom didn't make it today :( but I noticed UPS called the house... so it means its here in town ... they were probably calling for directions (I live in the Boonies) So i'm thinking about adding some color and testing out my new tablet ... what do you guys think? Color? or no...

Gamerprinter
09-06-2008, 01:42 AM
Try one in color, post it, and let us decide which you'd be better off with - its worth experimenting with your new tablet!

GP

delgondahntelius
09-06-2008, 05:38 AM
small changes... added coastline ripples and some more text..
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Sagenlicht
09-06-2008, 07:54 AM
Nice handdrawn map Delgo :)

I like the idea of that compass rose, it got a nice minimalistic style.

delgondahntelius
09-06-2008, 08:02 AM
Thank you Sage. I'm a big fan of simple, I don't think you get that much more simple when it comes to a compass rose, lol.

delgondahntelius
09-06-2008, 10:12 AM
Redrew and scanned in the Temples at Ket symbol... this one I like much better, and looks straighter than the other one.

Added all the islands text.... :D
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Sagenlicht
09-06-2008, 04:51 PM
Thank you Sage. I'm a big fan of simple, I don't think you get that much more simple when it comes to a compass rose, lol.

Hehe yup, keep it simple is a good thing :)

delgondahntelius
09-07-2008, 02:50 AM
Let's see. I went ahead and redrew all the town symbols and scanned them in, resized them and placed them on the map.
I placed the rippled coastlines down around all the mainland and islands. I chose a different text style for the islands, to show they are islands instead of placing the word island repetitively or eve isl. or I. Probably not proper procedure on a map, but it saves on space....

I also redid the compass rose to include both the direction indicator and the scale bar in one single object. I liked how that turned out if nothing else.
I still have some more text to place... as well as a swamp, some more forest and jungle, and I might extend the Tarn hills further SE toward the Min River.

UPS doesn't deliver on saturdays :( ... so Monday is the earliest I'll be able to see my tablet... I think they are doing it on purpose, some personal vendetta against me having fun .... b@#$%&ds .... :D

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Sagenlicht
09-07-2008, 07:53 AM
Another improvement Delgo :)

delgondahntelius
09-09-2008, 03:20 AM
@Sage, Thank you :) I try anyways...

Ok, I was playing around with some colors... here was some of what I'd done... I just pulled the one corner that I was working on since I hadn't done the whole map. I'll be cleaning up the edges and what not, this was just to get an idea of what it will look like... What do ya'll think?

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Steel General
09-09-2008, 08:02 AM
I like it Delgo, though the black and white one is equally nice. For me the color's really make the map "pop". Would definitely like to see the whole map in color.

delgondahntelius
09-09-2008, 08:21 AM
I'll try to get the whole thing in color SG :) depends on the time this week that I can devout to it...

Meanwhile.. here's the B&W with jungles finished, i redid the northern forests, don't know if I'm going to keep them like that yet... added the northern most swamp/bog...

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jfrazierjr
09-09-2008, 10:18 AM
@Sage, Thank you :) I try anyways...

Ok, I was playing around with some colors... here was some of what I'd done... I just pulled the one corner that I was working on since I hadn't done the whole map. I'll be cleaning up the edges and what not, this was just to get an idea of what it will look like... What do ya'll think?

6409

I prefer the B&W one, especially after your latest update. To me, there is just something about hand drawn that screams B&W.

For me at least, the cross hatch style shading seemed to jar to much when you add color to it. I see you have some blended shades and highlights under the mountain lines(which I like), but I can't see enough due to the cross hatch to see if it would blend well with the cross hatch missing. I really like the green of the forest, tis very nice color selection. Not big on the tan plains, not sure if you plan to introduce a few more color variations or not, but right now, the tan, grey, and green is not blending in my eyeballs very well.

Looking forward to seeing more.

NeonKnight
09-09-2008, 10:53 AM
Man, I am glad I did mine Hand drawn and never looked at anyones until I had the majority of the map done, as some of these hand drawn maps are quite well, This being one being probably the best. Ooooooo well, another I challenge I won't win :(

delgondahntelius
09-09-2008, 01:03 PM
I prefer the B&W one, especially after your latest update. To me, there is just something about hand drawn that screams B&W.

For me at least, the cross hatch style shading seemed to jar to much when you add color to it. I see you have some blended shades and highlights under the mountain lines(which I like), but I can't see enough due to the cross hatch to see if it would blend well with the cross hatch missing. I really like the green of the forest, tis very nice color selection. Not big on the tan plains, not sure if you plan to introduce a few more color variations or not, but right now, the tan, grey, and green is not blending in my eyeballs very well.

Looking forward to seeing more.

Ya, the color thing is just something I wanted to do after I got the tablet, test run ya know. I do have blended colors on the mountains... I'll try to fix the hatch issue, maybe get rid of it all together. The tan plains was something I threw down in a hurry ... it won't be there forever. :)
I to was happy with the trees ... at least i'm not completely color blind ... lol


Man, I am glad I did mine Hand drawn and never looked at anyones until I had the majority of the map done, as some of these hand drawn maps are quite well, This being one being probably the best. Ooooooo well, another I challenge I won't win :(

Thanks NK, but I kinda felt the same way... I was under the impression your's was better than mine :D But with so many great entries... and in color, I don't think i'm in danger of winning anything anytime soon either... Just got to keep plugging away, we'll get ours soon enough Neon... soon enough.

Steel General
09-09-2008, 01:30 PM
I dunno if something gets lost in the conversion to .JPG or its something else, but the swamps almost look like they have a big black line around them.

The jungles look great!

delgondahntelius
09-09-2008, 07:25 PM
Ya, SG, its supposed to be stipple, but it isn't working out all that well... I redid it somewhat ... hopefully it looks more like a swamp and less like a black hole :)

Here's the color version so far... not my entry ... my entry to come after this...

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delgondahntelius
09-09-2008, 07:33 PM
Changed out the black holes for swamps... finished the labeling ... I hope... Still might change out the forests tho... the jungle has to stay.. still might have to tweak the swamps...
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Ascension
09-09-2008, 08:08 PM
Put me down as a vote for the B&W because you do it so amazingly well.

delgondahntelius
09-09-2008, 09:43 PM
thanx Big A ... at least I have I can call myself skilled at one thing.. :) appreciate the praise...

Sagenlicht
09-10-2008, 05:25 AM
I prefer the B&W as well Delgo

Steel General
09-10-2008, 08:23 AM
It's probably just me, but the swamps still look the same. Love everything else though. :)

delgondahntelius
09-10-2008, 03:40 PM
I prefer the B&W as well Delgo
I'd have to agree Sage, it will (is) my entry ... I'm just messing with the colors to get a feel for the new tablet. :D


It's probably just me, but the swamps still look the same. Love everything else though. :)
Really? man... I've been working on that swamp for a while... I guess I'll just redraw them... and then scan them in and replace them .... (got some new .13 tips for my pens.... they make swamps look gooooood. )

Ascension
09-10-2008, 05:42 PM
I have had a love/hate relationship with those Kohinoor pens for 20 years now. They are totally sweet but I've never had one that doesn't block up after about 3 days, and after 2 days of trying to clean em I usually just throw em against a wall and buy a new one :) But man they make some sweet lines.

Steel General
09-10-2008, 05:44 PM
Really? man... I've been working on that swamp for a while... I guess I'll just redraw them... and then scan them in and replace them .... (got some new .13 tips for my pens.... they make swamps look gooooood. )

Don't redo them just cause my eyes might be bad, get some other opinions first.

delgondahntelius
09-10-2008, 05:59 PM
I have had a love/hate relationship with those Kohinoor pens for 20 years now. They are totally sweet but I've never had one that doesn't block up after about 3 days, and after 2 days of trying to clean em I usually just throw em against a wall and buy a new one :) But man they make some sweet lines.
Tell me about it... the only trouble I really have are the .13 pens... they are just so damn tiny and delicate that it doesn't take much to break or otherwise damage the wire when you clean them. Kohinoor has a service plan... just send them points to the company, and they'll replace or fix them for a small fee... a much smaller fee than buying a whole new pen.. most certainly.


Don't redo them just cause my eyes might be bad, get some other opinions first.
Well, its not that, I don't much care for them either... lol. If I don't like the look of them then there must be something wrong with it ... and I drew it so I know they suck.... :D

delgondahntelius
09-11-2008, 06:53 AM
Ok... here is the final map... I think (I hope) and all I really did on this was rework the swamps... Thank you all for your C&C and your time. Good luck to everyone.. :D

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Steel General
09-11-2008, 09:10 AM
I knew it had to be me, it was the heavy line of the coast that was throwing me off ( I think). Great job!

jfrazierjr
09-11-2008, 09:12 AM
Ok... here is the final map... I think (I hope) and all I really did on this was rework the swamps... Thank you all for your C&C and your time. Good luck to everyone.. :D

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Heh.. your small marsh reminds me of a kindey....

I really like this map over all. Are you going to finish the non challenge color version?

delgondahntelius
09-11-2008, 09:38 AM
I was thinking about finishing it... if I can get around to it :D

dorpond
09-11-2008, 09:59 PM
I really like the overall feeling to the pen drawn map. I have a special place in my heart for these styles.

I have to say however that the messy stuff (I think it is the swamp) looks very out of place compared to the rest of the map. I think you would be much better off drawing clumps of grass (the 3 blades of grass that that meet in the middle) and maybe some cat tail images to represent the swamps. Again - do it will the same tool you used to draw the other parts of the map - keep it consistent.

I will be watching very closely to see what you come up with. Fix it up - you have time.

delgondahntelius
09-11-2008, 10:23 PM
lol dorpond.... I used a pen... a real pen :D its the only tool I know how to use :D
at least most of the map was done this way. I may yet fix it, I do have plenty of time, I'm just kinda lazy :D

dorpond
09-11-2008, 10:38 PM
lol dorpond.... I used a pen... a real pen :D its the only tool I know how to use :D
at least most of the map was done this way. I may yet fix it, I do have plenty of time, I'm just kinda lazy :D

Heh, I had no idea! :)
I have to say Bravo then! Man, great job!
Yeah, the swamp looks blurred and smudged compared to the rest of the map. But pen?!? Man, I have no room to complain there! :)

(unfortunately, I have not been able to read many of the posts due to the turtle slow website. It would just take way too long. If you mentioned that it was done in pen, I appologize - I didn't read the whole thread)

delgondahntelius
09-12-2008, 12:29 AM
Yes, I drew it all in pen, and scanned it in... then I did some touch ups in photoshop (including the swamps) I redid the forest and jungles as well... and the lettering, which is originally why I started to touch it up, was done in PS... my scrawl is a bit unreadable..

so... while the original was pen & ink, the finishing touch ups were done in PS ... so its a pseudo map :D

delgondahntelius
09-12-2008, 05:09 AM
Ok... one (hopefully) more swamp fix...

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Steel General
09-12-2008, 09:33 AM
Lookin' good!

dorpond
09-12-2008, 10:53 AM
It is much better but it still feels out of place to me. Here are some things I think could use some work:

- I think it looks too sharp pointy. Not sure if there are pointy thickets in a swamp but they not feel natural to me. Barbed Wire *ouch*

- I think going very dark on the swamp makes it feel out of place. I think a swamp can easily be represented without all the ink just by drawing simple 3 prong strands of grass coupled with cattails.

Example:

delgondahntelius
09-12-2008, 11:00 PM
Ok dorpond... I took your advice... put some real swamp grass and cattails in, what do ya'll think...

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dorpond
09-12-2008, 11:06 PM
I like that a lot better! YAY!
However, they look the same size as the mountains -- HUGE! :P

I would make them smaller - more in tune with the other stuff on the map.

But I think that simplicity is much better than what you had previously. I am curious to what the other cartographers think.

Great job!

Steel General
09-13-2008, 12:14 AM
I like the new swamps/marshes, very easy on us old, blind people's eyes. :)

jfrazierjr
09-13-2008, 12:58 AM
I like that a lot better! YAY!
However, they look the same size as the mountains -- HUGE! :P

I would make them smaller - more in tune with the other stuff on the map.

But I think that simplicity is much better than what you had previously. I am curious to what the other cartographers think.

Great job!

Yes...very pretty....
too big...
I would also think about outlining the area of the marshes "lightly" AND put in a few THIN squiggly lines horizontally to indicate watery.

Sagenlicht
09-13-2008, 05:19 PM
The new swaps are nice indeed and to me their size doesnt matter. I dont think that the size of the symbols really matter on a handdranw map as long as they arent really huge. In the end they just represent the swamps location.

delgondahntelius
09-21-2008, 03:59 AM
Ok.. final piece ... this time.. maybe for real
fixed the swamp, made the brush a little smaller and the cattails, and etched a small line around it

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ravells
09-21-2008, 07:48 AM
Absolutely fantastic work, Del!

Steel General
09-21-2008, 10:16 AM
Beeoooteefull! :D

Great job Delgo!

Sagenlicht
09-21-2008, 04:21 PM
Aye, I agree as well Delgo :) Its nicely done.

dorpond
09-22-2008, 10:34 AM
*claps hands*
Bravo! Nice fixes!

delgondahntelius
09-23-2008, 07:56 AM
Thank you everyone :D .... now.. just remember.. vote for me :D :D :D

mmmmmpig
09-25-2008, 03:57 AM
I love that this one is pure back and pure white. well played, well played indeed

delgondahntelius
09-25-2008, 05:38 PM
Thanks 5xM