View Full Version : An untitled world

08-23-2009, 02:12 PM
I've spent much time lately experimenting with various styles, so I've created dozens of partially finished maps... I like this one the best so far.

Its a semi-realistic atlas form. The world has no name, and its pretty undeveloped. What I have done is the terrain; I am still working on the mountains, then adding some forest and farmland detail, and resolving errors in logic, like some rivers [I based the rivers around the initial general map with mountains scribbled in, so of course they require a bit of tweaking after doing the terrain effects].

The world was created in the same way as my last map project - getting an idea of what shape the world will be, then designing it around that idea - in this case, one continent divided into a larger southern region containing mostly grasslands, light forest, and desert, and a northern region, colder, with more mountains, and water on both sides of the continent.

I used the good old technique of generating clouds, playing with the threshold, then cutting and pasting bits of shoreline and lakes to make something more continent-ish.

Its all done in PS7. Its a good program for this, although I wish I had an updated version... :P

08-23-2009, 02:15 PM
I like what you got so far. The landmass looks nice as do the colors. The rivers are a bit pronounced, but I think it will turn out all right once you add mountains, forests and farmland (the rivers will then attract less attention).

Have some rep for posting your first map, even though it's a work in progress!

08-23-2009, 02:25 PM
Yeah, the borders will be toned down after the terrain work is done. Probably a softer brown for the rivers and lakes that will work better with the terrain colours.

08-23-2009, 02:33 PM
Like Gandwarf said, pretty nice start but the rivers need some touching up. Maybe make the rivers a bit more narrow at the places where they start. Increasing working resolution also might help with the issue (if you aren't already working with higher res than on the picture you posted on the forum) :) Thumbs up!

08-23-2009, 04:45 PM
As for the rivers on this kind of style I might go with the old simple black line. Pretty snazzy, though, so keep going.

08-23-2009, 05:04 PM
The .PSD is much larger than this jpeg, because I know how much better it is to work on a large canvas for detail, and be able to shrink the completed piece a bit.

Any suggestions for rivers, forests, cities, etcetera are always appreciated.

08-23-2009, 05:38 PM
The .PSD is much larger than this jpeg, because I know how much better it is to work on a large canvas for detail, and be able to shrink the completed piece a bit.

Any suggestions for rivers, forests, cities, etcetera are always appreciated.

I like the map except for the mountains. You just have to the ones you have more pronounced and 'higher' then the current ones you have.

08-23-2009, 05:51 PM
I agree. Its my first time doing textured raised mountains, so they need a fair bit of work to look more like mountains and less like rocky plains.

edit: also, I made another river layer where the rivers are very narrow black lines - it does look better.

Steel General
08-23-2009, 06:40 PM
It's coming along nicely, a few tweaks here and there and you'll have yourself a map to be proud of.

08-23-2009, 09:44 PM
Okay, an update with another version...

I'm working on forests still, and haven't added human aspects yet, but I have done a lot of tweaking with terrain, and especially the mountains. They aren't perfect, but I like the look better.

08-23-2009, 09:55 PM
That really is coming along nicely. And don't worry about the fact you're using PS7 - it's perfectly functional, I was using it myself until just a few weeks ago. And to be honest, the major difference I've seen in relation to working on projects like these are the ability to create groups for your layers, and select multiple layers at once. Everything else I can do in CS3 I can do in PS7. So your tools are perfectly functional :)

And really, just ask anyone else here, it's not the tool that makes the map, it's the artist. How you bring your vision across is the important thing.

keep up the great work!

08-23-2009, 09:59 PM
I still use CS which only one step up from 7. The only thing different between our versions, that I use anyway, is the blend mode called Hard Mix. CS3 gets into more complicated things which can be handy, I suppose, and CS4 has some problems with memory usage. So if you ever get stuck, there are more than enough of us here to help you figure out work-arounds.

08-23-2009, 11:57 PM
Hey LS, I've enjoyed your stuff over at DeviantArt; good to see you here too!

And wonderful job on that map; I love that look.

08-24-2009, 02:57 PM
Good to see you here as well!

Since I have my terrain mostly done, I'm trying to begin on some human aspects: cities, towns, ports, and political entities. Since there are multiple countries in close proximity that require clear identification, I need borders of some sort.

I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions as to identifying nations on this type of map.

Steel General
08-24-2009, 03:00 PM
Take a look at Ascension's Atlas-Style Tutorial, that may give you some ideas.

08-25-2009, 02:24 PM
Looks great. The rivers are improved, too.

-Rob A>

08-25-2009, 08:51 PM
t decided to redo the forests to something more fitting to this scale and having a political overlay. I also recoloured the terraina bit; The subarctic is now more like the Canadian territories, and I fixed the mountains.

The old forest style was better for a Guild Wars type of map - artsy and textured... this one should be more in the way of general terrain and climate. It will be easier to draw on at the least.

The forests in some areas look a light dusty greenish brown, but if you see a satellite photo of Italy, that's essentially what it will be.

08-25-2009, 09:13 PM
You've got some really huge deltas...unless this is more of a regional scale instead of continental scale.

08-25-2009, 11:32 PM
Indeed, after changing the scale, the deltas became a bit gigantic. I didn't fix them, but now its something to do.

I'm going to fix two of the delta-looking things to be reasonable, three will be removed, and two of them will become island clusters, like they were in the original map.

At least on a forum like this people can locate errors that I miss or forget about :)

edit: As a note, I will be creating another map after this one is complete. This one is the first, and won't be great since it is experimental.

I will make another based on the same world, using a different style, more focused on visual appeal. Redrawn, a higher resolution, and in general be better planned. I'm still sorting out ideas on the first map...