View Full Version : Elements of 19th century maps?

Jürgen Hubert
03-26-2009, 10:11 AM
I'm trying to improve my Known Lands map (http://urbis.wikidot.com/local--files/known-lands/KnownLands.png) of Urbis, and I want to do this in the style of 19th century overland maps. And I could use some inspiration for this.

Thus, I'm looking for impressive large-scale 19th century maps with style elements I could steal. Particular ways of drawing mountains and other terrain features, political divisions, vegetation, terrain, and so forth - I want to look at a large number of variations so that I can decide on the best ones. So if you know of any such maps - which ones did you find the most useful for inspiration?

Steel General
03-26-2009, 10:56 AM
A quick goole search on 19th cnetury maps turned up this; http://www.davidrumsey.com/ plus others...

03-26-2009, 04:29 PM
Its a clear detailed map covering a large region. Are you going to cut it up as you make it more poetic?

I don't know if its perfectly on topic but I find this site sort of inspirational...



Jürgen Hubert
03-28-2009, 03:10 AM
Its a clear detailed map covering a large region. Are you going to cut it up as you make it more poetic?

Well, I'll be cutting it up for the maps of the individual regions, but it will still be the same map - since I'm creating it with Inkscape, I want it to be scalable.

03-28-2009, 09:48 PM
Hey Jurgen, good to see you at the Guild!

There's a group here that do Alternate Earth History stuff. Now I know Urbis is not an alternate Earth, however the kind of maps they work with fall into that social-political 19th century styled for the kind of work they do. It might be worth check out. Although I don't believe they use terrain symbols like mountains.

Here's a link to one of those Alternate Earth guys...

A nice use of mountains for a distinctive 19th century look might be Bohunks winning January Challenge map...
East Tharduur (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?t=3993)

Its probably worth checking out the entire thread to see his process from start to finish.

Many people use Wilbur (created by Waldronate, another member here) which creates realistic 3D terrain, then export to a image format, import to GIMP or PS and lightening it up, heighten contrast, otherwise enhance toward a more minimalist style with transparency, export as a transparent PNG that you bring into Inkscape and place where you need them. Wilbur is a free download.

There are many ways to approach what you're asking with differing results.

Good luck in your endeavors!


PS: I know you'll want to place Inkscape as your primary software. See the software list under my name? Go to Edit your Profile, then settings, go to the bottom of the page. Enter your preferred software in there, and it will show up like it does under my name and stats, to left of page. OK?