View Full Version : [CG Choice Map] Vaniya

05-13-2009, 07:18 PM
This map shows the continent of Southern Vaniya. The WIP thread for this map is located here: Vaniya - WIP (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?t=4888)

Vaniya is the land in which the novel I am writing is based. It is a fantasy world in which, although magic exists, it has long since been broken, changed into many different forms that the original users could not comprehend. For decades now the land has been under a terrible blight and the human race is dying out, slowly but surely. The only non-human race in the land are the Mandrai which live in The Ruhks, the great forest to the north. The humans and Mandrai have been at war for many long years.

The map, although ostensibly for my own benefit as a writing aid, has been decorated a little as if it is a communication between Arcanists, the practitioners of Circle Magic situated on the isle of Maloglash. The idea is that it is used as they attempt to chart the increase in The Blight. To this effect, I have added bits of flavour text to the map (I have increased the visibility on most of these since I last posted, but some are still purposely faint), some of which are directly related to my story.


As I said in the WIP thread, this is still a work in progress to be honest, but I have come to a point where I have to stop working on it to the exclusion of all else. So for now, it is complete. I will add and change bits to it as things occur to me but I won't update on here unless something major happens or I reach the point where I can say for definite that it is totally complete.

The map was created entirely in Photoshop CS. I started with a digital photograph of an outline I drew on paper but this soon changed a lot as work progressed.
Jeremy Elford's amazing tutorials were my way in to using Photoshop for mapping. I doubt I would have carried on with it, or even started to try, had it not been for those. So thanks for that. :)
They can be found http://www.jezelf.co.uk/tutorials.htm for anyone who is yet to see them.

Fonts used are "IlShakeFest" for the labelling, "Dali" for the flavour text and "Ancestry" for the Cartouche. I believe I got them all from DaFonts.com.

Thanks to everyone in the WIP thread who contributed opinions or encouragement - your comments and critique were much appreciated. :)

P.s. - I'm not sure what use anyone could get out of this other than me, but if you feel the need then knock yourself out. Just consider it under the usual CC copyright thingymajig that people bang on about around here. :)

05-13-2009, 08:12 PM
This is an excellent map, one of the finer ones on our site. It might not look like much to those unfamiliar with making maps but the details are what makes this (along with the color scheme). Those of us who are utterly familiar with such things can appreciate the passion that goes into making a great piece art. Fonts are also easily mishandled but your choices are superb, IlShakeFest is a great 17th-18th century font and Dali is a great choice for flavoring. Cartouches are also easily mishandled but yours looks very professional. All in all, this is a top notch, A+ map. Excellent job.

05-13-2009, 10:00 PM
Great attention to detail, awsome color scheme, wonderful style. Easily one of the best looking maps I have seen. Very professional.

05-14-2009, 04:01 AM
WOW this is such a beautiful map. I've completely missed the wip....have to look into that one now. Gives me tons of inspiration this one.

05-14-2009, 08:02 AM
Awesome work. I missed the WIP too, but I'm going to go look at it.
Nice job of not making it too much, or distracting by throwing in too much color or too much variety in trees or mountains. What you have done, which is quite a bit all works so nicely together.

05-14-2009, 01:43 PM
Really stunning. I love the subtle country borders. I also think the faded descriptive text in the sea is a beautiful touch. This is great work. Well done.

05-20-2009, 12:47 AM
I saw this map via the Cartographers Choice subforum. When I first saw the map, my jaw dropped. Wow! A stunning piece of art. I had to come here and give Ramah some truly well deserved rep.

05-20-2009, 12:51 AM
You'll be receiving my medical bill soon. Due to the beauty and attention to detail of your map, my jaw hit the table so hard, it shattered.

05-20-2009, 05:42 AM
Wow, thanks for the comments guys. Really appreciated. :)

05-29-2009, 06:07 PM

I am in awe of your mappiness and can't think of superlatives that are sufficient superlative to describe it. I would like to point out, however, that the "s" in the lettering of the Ea.s.tern Sea is still in the original ambiguous form. I didn't see any other instances of this, which argues that it was unintentional. Perhaps you are steering wide of perfection to avoid Allah's wrath...

As I was born colorblind, I could never equal such a work of art as this one, but I hope to someday create something worth creating.

05-30-2009, 05:17 AM
I would like to point out, however, that the "s" in the lettering of the Ea.s.tern Sea is still in the original ambiguous form. I didn't see any other instances of this, which argues that it was unintentional. Perhaps you are steering wide of perfection to avoid Allah's wrath...

Ha! How could I have missed that one? :x

Ah well, it will have to stay like that for now but thanks for pointing that out. When I'm ready to revisit it at a later time that will be the first thing to change I guess. :)

And good luck with the map making. If you look at the WIP for this map you can see that the earlier attempts at this were very basic and you can see how it evolved as I progressed - it's easy and I'm sure you can do better.

As for the colour-blindness, how does that work? Does it mean that you cannot see certain colours or that you cannot see shades of colour or...?

01-07-2010, 10:40 AM
Ramah, what bruches you used for the forests? I loooooved them, but cant find it :((
anyone, send me the link.. thx! ^^

BTW Ramah, I loved ur Vaniya map, specially the labbeling font and names, have you come up with them all? or u got inspired somehow? :D

01-07-2010, 11:11 AM
I created the brushes for the map but have since reinstalled the system so unfortunately those particular brushes no longer exist.

The ones from my Aronbor map were posted in the mapping elements forum. They aren't exactly the same but similar.

As for the labelling on the map, I think I did it the same way most people do. Sit around, spend far too long trying to think of cool sounding names, realise you've been sitting there for hours and then type in the first names you can think of that don't sound too sucky.

01-11-2010, 08:43 PM
This map is really yummy! :)

Edit: I tried to give you some rep. Not sure if it worked though.

01-14-2010, 09:05 PM
P.s. - I'm not sure what use anyone could get out of this other than me, but if you feel the need then knock yourself out. Just consider it under the usual CC copyright thingymajig that people bang on about around here. :)

Well, I have a use for it. It would a perfect starting point for a D&D campaign I am looking to run. Dungeon Mastering I do well, map making I do not. As such though, I would like to be able to tweak things, add notes, etc. Would it be possible to get the original photoshop file? Working with layers would be easier than editing with the jpeg, but I can do that if need be. Thanks.

01-17-2010, 03:22 AM
This is my all time favorite map.


06-05-2010, 01:50 PM

I never did answer your question about color-blindness. For a cartographer, it's rather insidious, because I still see colors in all of their glory and richness, just not the same way that people whose eyesight is "normal" perceive them. So while I may find a particular shade of brown quite lovely, I may think it is a lovely shade of green. I have similar issues with purple and blue, although not as badly. It may sound harmless, but it can lead to color choices that might ruin a piece. Two great things about doing my work here at the Cartographer's Guild is that a) people see my mistakes and point them out and b) I'm using Photoshop, so changing a color usually isn't difficult.

I know what color most things are supposed to be, so it isn't difficult (usually) for me to chose from the right color family. Not everything is that simple though, so I appreciate the help everyone offers.

01-08-2011, 08:53 AM
This is truly wonderful. Everything from the differences in tree shape and size, to the faded writing in the water. I love this map, the only thing I could thing to make it better, would be to blend the black text with the land. Obviously not as much as you did the water, but even 10-15% less opacity would look nice. Again, Great job!

04-11-2011, 09:01 AM

Great map. I specially like the faux-page folds. They give the map that extra something to make it truly great.
I tried looking for the tutorials you mentioned, but they seem to have been taken down. You wouldn't happen to have them on your machine? I tried the Wayback Machine, but it didn't save the pictures.

Thanks, and great luck with that novel.

04-11-2011, 01:54 PM
Hmm, sorry I don't have them on my machine. They went down once before for a while and someone was asking about them before Jezelf returned to the board and sorted it out. Maybe he changed the address of them.

I'd start by doing a search for threads started by Jezelf in the tutorial forum here. If you can't find it then you might like to up your post count a bit so you can PM him.

Ryan K
04-11-2011, 05:32 PM
Gorgeous map, Ramah :) Have some rep!

Port Paladine
04-11-2011, 08:58 PM
I did not see your map as it progressed in the WIP section but as I look now I can not believe how far it has come. And worth every bit of any blood sweat or tears that went into it. You have set the bar for me. A wonderful piece of art.

Rep Added

06-29-2011, 03:25 PM
Absolutely wonderful map. Have to say that it is by far one of the best, if not the best, I have ever seen. Along side with some of your other creations. I hope that in time you will find it to share with us more maps from the world you have created. Maybe we can see the origin land of the invaders?

06-29-2011, 06:15 PM
Thank you, Exin.

To be honest I have no idea about the land from which the Mandrai come other than the vague jungley habitat. All I know is that they moved to Vaniya by necessity as their own land was dying and becoming unable to sustain life. This is happening to varying degrees to other lands too, depending upon their relative proximity to Vaniya. Damn those pesky humans and their desire for power. :)

06-30-2011, 04:48 AM
Well, the continent of Vaniya looks wonderful, but after seeing it you simply can't wonder how the whole world looks like ^^, it's the feeling that you want to see more and more. In any case, like I have seen so many saying this before, great work, especially in delimiting the kingdoms, very fine work indeed. I am a fan, I don't know how to make maps, but I can recognize a work of art when I can see one.

11-17-2011, 10:58 PM
This map is truly a pleasure to look at and enjoy. Definitely art.

11-18-2011, 10:39 AM
Wow, this is quite an amazing piece of mapping. Some of the subtle details are just incredible. The colour scheme is perfect whilst the lettering is also of a frightening high standard. I know this is an oldie, but it most certainly is a goodie!

Martynas Martin
02-27-2012, 03:33 AM
Beatifully drawn. The quality of small details is amazing. Most of the continental maps have small details, but the you zoom in, view blurs. This one is just awesome. Keep on good work!

02-27-2012, 08:39 AM
Fantastic, really beautiful and the detail is extravagant. I particularly love the faded text, it's very evocative. I also love the folded paper effect - how did you achieve that? It's a very good idea.

My only crit you've probably heard before - on the right is the Eastern something, sea or ocean I assume but the label is cut off.

Anyway, love it. Jealous. :D

04-10-2012, 09:13 AM
Really amazing work, big fan of ALL your maps.
Like Immolate said : "I am in awe of your mappiness and can't think of superlatives that are sufficient superlative to describe it."

06-02-2013, 05:43 PM
Absolutely fantastic work, really. I love the historical style, it looks like a map that could've been made in ancient times - or at least to the eyes of a novice like I am one. Great job!

06-09-2013, 12:25 AM
This is one of those maps that just keeps bringing me back


06-09-2013, 05:46 AM
Beautifull !!! No more words for me ^^
Thks for sharing your work