View Full Version : Filling a need for a missing map

03-16-2009, 01:59 AM
Note: map removed.

>>>I have always liked making maps. I started as a very young kid just mapping my neighborhood and the open fields and hills around Dublin California. My dad gave me an old outdated map of the city when I was about 11 or 12 and I loved it. Maps were a guide, with them you knew what was where and where to go. Anyway I have been role playing for a long time and hadn't thought about how I liked maps even before that until today.

I bought the D&D 4th edition starter set to teach my mother, if you can believe it, how to play 4th ed. I am reading through it and there it says crude map of Harken given to players. I looked around in the material but there was no map crude or otherwise of the little village of Harkenwold. I started and did a really crude pencil one and decided I might as well make a good one, at least for me to keep track of where things were.

I grabbed the existing map of Fallcrest, a community nearby from other 4th edition materials and tore it apart into brushes in GIMP 2.0. I started painting. 4 and a half hours later I looked up and remembered how much fun it was to make maps. I dropped the map off at the 4th ed. forums for other people to use and then went on a google hunt for other nutty people like myself. Luckily I found this place.

Anyway here is what I came up with.

Here is the map Key based loosely on the Starter set info.

Harken Map key
1) Baron Stockmer's Keep
2) Aunt Nonnie's Place
3) Cliffside Brewery
4) Harkenwold Trading Station
5) Ruined House
6) Temple of Faith
7) Harkenwold Caverns
8) Militia Guard House
9) Granary
10) Stables

03-16-2009, 02:46 AM
Love the color scheme. Do you have a larger version? You can post up to 4000 x 4000 here (but make sure that the file size is under 4.7 megabytes). I'm sure we'd all like to see the details of this fine lookin map. Welcome to The Guild.

03-16-2009, 03:00 AM
Note: Map removed.

I posted Harken at PutPhoto because I didn't have my own website to host it. The thumb link clicks to the hosted image at PutPhoto. Under that medium scale image is a link to "Click Here for High Res Version" which takes you to the best resolution I could access.

Is there a way to just upload the higher resolution one here rather than just link to a URL?

Also I started with a map called Falcrest provided by WotC for another adventure in roughly the same area. I wanted their exiting map and this map to look like they were cut from the same cloth so it wouldn't confuse players who saw both. Falcrest is more of a city while Harken is just a farming village.

Here is a direct link to the higher res. one.

03-16-2009, 04:24 AM
Very nice. I definitely see the Fallcrest-mappiness in there. Very nice job.

03-16-2009, 04:30 AM
In a post, you will see a bunch of icons across the top of the typing window and smiley faces on the side...one of those icons looks like a black paper clip...this is for attachments. Clicking that will bring up the "manage attachments" window...browse to the file that you want and hit the upload button.

03-16-2009, 05:12 AM
I really like your approach wmterney: find a map you like, deconstruct it and then make your own in the same style. I think that this is one of the best ways to learn how to map. The tree texture is lovely as is are the desaturated colours and the building distribution. My only very small crit is that although the field textures are great, they are a bit overwhelming (possibly because they are at put 90 degree angles and probably because the lines are very dark...lower the opacity a bit?

Great work and duly repped.


Steel General
03-16-2009, 07:19 AM
Very nice, have some more rep *bonk*

I think the only thing that looks a bit 'off' to me is the fields. It looks a lot like a woven basket pattern, it's almost "to perfect". No big deal though just an observation.

03-16-2009, 08:42 AM
Well you certainly held on to the Schleyness of the map! Very good and welcome to the guild. The one thing I'd consider would be changing the compass - it's something of a signature of Mike's and it might be best to use a different one on your own map.

03-16-2009, 11:36 AM
I agree on the fields. They are definitely not how I'd do them using my own "style". This was meant to be a sister map to Mike's Falcrest, which uses that style for fields and the compass.

But I take it as a challenge that the next thing I need to do is develop my own palette for the town building and use that to create a style all my own. I appreciate you guys nudging me in that direction and I have already started on that and will continue that discussion elsewhere.

Here is a link to the original map of Falcrest big sister city to Harken that I used as inspiration and for palettes.

Link to map removed (It is still posted over at the Wizards site.)

03-16-2009, 01:29 PM
Wow, very cool map. I am impressed. I repped you for it.
I really like the original style and you have copied it well. Do I understand correctly that you have created this map in 4.5 hours?!

03-16-2009, 01:55 PM
Yes. It took me an hour and a half to deconstruct the Falcrest map into GIMP brushes and then the remaining three to paint the Harken map over it. Although to be fair, I got to start with a beautiful parchment background, scale and compass that I would have had to spend a long while building on my own. Work I intend to do now for my own world, Arastia.

I am working on my own style brushes for houses and so far in an hour I only have thatched and wooden. I'll publish them here for general use as soon as I finish the set.

Seeing what you guys are doing here only drives me to work harder and publish sooner.

03-16-2009, 03:22 PM
Well, I am really impressed that you could copy the style of a professional map like this and create your own map. And that you did it in a few hours is even more amazing. I wouldn't know where to start!

06-28-2009, 08:19 AM
I like this map a lot. The only problem I see is the compass direction. The map should be turned 90 degrees to the left for it to be correct. As the King's Road through the forest runs east and west direction, not north and south.

Merriman Lyon
02-24-2010, 01:49 PM
Wow! Awesome work! And it really does fill a need - I'm right in the middle of a campaign I wrote as a spacer between the H1 and H2 modules, set primarily in Harkenwold. With your permission, wmtenery, I'd love to use this map in place of the rough piece I threw together.

Bizelplyx, in looking at the master map of the Vale, the King's road is east-west through the forest, however, it runs north-south where it passes through Harkenwold and the forest comes nowhere *near* Harkenwold on that map. I'd be more than willing to accept that wmtenery's map is simply more current/detailed than the master map and shows how the forest has expanded down the road to engulf the town.

02-24-2010, 02:53 PM
Removed per later discussion.

02-26-2010, 12:59 PM
To be honest, when I initially read this thread I was livid. As a creative professional I spend quite a lot of time making sure that the work I produce is original and high quality. When the thought occurs that someone would Gimp or Photoshop my work into there own piece, especially when 100% of the new piece comes from my original, I begin smoldering at the ears a bit. It's one thing to be inspired by another artist's work but here I must say that you have crossed a line into the realm of theft. Even though you're not selling the image and you discuss how it was made, it still leaves the impression that the majority of the work is your's when clearly it is not. As a result I must object.

You wouldn't collage another artist painting into a new piece without even touching a canvas with a brush and then claim that it's now your "painting" would you?

Why not create your own map with your own art in the "style" of Fallcrest? I dare say it might take a bit longer than four and a half hours though.

Additionally, if you begin to post Gimp brushes taken directly from my work for distribution then it may be Wizards of the Coast your hearing from instead of me.

I'm not demanding that the map you produced be removed because I believe this thread can serve to educate new artists and cartographers about the topic of infringment. The fact that you posted my Fallcrest map without a copyright or authorship note also bothers me but I'm sure you can fix that with a quick edit.


02-26-2010, 01:36 PM
1. I was extremely up front about how it was constructed, why it was constructed and what it was being used for.

2. I have an in depth understanding of copyright law. Derivative works, even collages of others works are covered under this law. I draw your attention to the artistic works of Andy Warhol and countless others.

3. The gimp brushes I said I was working on to supply to the community were not the ones I used for this project. I am working on my own sets because I want to get my own style and look. I never had any intentions of publishing brushes from your work. Evidence of this fact is the set of brushes I have since published here for buildings that are in no way derivative of anything you have done.

4. Having said all that, I have owned and operated a game publishing business for many years and worked with dozens of artists whose works adorn my books. I am sensitive to the rights and desires of the authors and artists. Simply because you have a problem with it. It has been removed from here and the original hosting site.

If you have any problem with any of this I avail you of my email wmichaeltenery@yahoo.com. I would be happy to discuss any of this or anything further.

Thank you,

- W. Michael Tenery III

02-26-2010, 02:30 PM
Are you really trying to justify your map by claiming that you're familiar with copyright law and are sensitive to the rights of artists?

If you don't feel that there is any problem with the manner in which you built the map than I'm not sure what else I can say to convince you that doing your own work is far superior to simply hacking anothers. I too am familiar with copyright law and if you'd like to debate the issue I'd be happy to read any reference in US law that allows for distribution of works derived 100% form another piece without any novelty in context.

As for Warhol, his art took other published works and re-interpreted them in a new context. There's a big difference between his work and yours.

02-26-2010, 02:55 PM
Okay, I think that's enough. Unless either of you are copyright lawyers then I would strongly suggest that you refrain from making categorical statements about copyright law.

Mike has stated his dispeasure about the nature of use of his work. Wmtenery has removed the maps in response. Both of you feel that you have copyright law on your side and I am certainly not in a position to make a legal judgement. Nor do I believe it is in anyone's interests to take this to a point where such a ruling would have to be made. I would strongly recommend that any further communication be made in private between the two of you.

If you have any complaints about this, please feel free to pm me with them.

02-26-2010, 02:58 PM
Sorry didn't see the intervening post, respectfully removed post.

02-26-2010, 03:00 PM
Here's a link to a fairly in-depth article on derivative Works over a Wikipedia:

Here's a link to great Ninja Mountain podcast episode about the topic as well:

Hope this helps clarify the issue. :)