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Brodiggan
09-26-2009, 11:25 PM
As the title says, this is the first map I've submitted here, so be gentle. I was trying to go for a rough, ink and watercolors look, nothing too detailed as I'll be using this as a campaign handout and I want to leave plenty of room for added details later.

The whole thing took approximately 4 and a half hours, and is mostly done freehand in photoshop (with the exception of the decoration around the map title, which was lifted from a 17th century german map to add a bit of punch to the map, and for which I can claim no credit).

Comments and criticism are definitely appreciated, just keep in mind I was more worried about speed than perfection on this map, since the handout needed to be ready by tomorrow afternoon at the latest.

Gidde
09-26-2009, 11:31 PM
Looks very nice, and I'm incredibly jealous of the speed. It'd take me days to do that :)

Have some rep for your first map!

Brodiggan
09-26-2009, 11:39 PM
Looks very nice, and I'm incredibly jealous of the speed. It'd take me days to do that :)

Have some rep for your first map!

Thanks! As for the speed, there was one big thing that helped me there, and that was just drawing everything I could at 10 to 20 times the size I planned on it being in the final version, very quickly, and very roughly, then using the transform tool to reduce it to the appropriate final size. A lot of the roughness is lost in the reduction, and a quick sharpen brings out the important lines again. And hey, it only takes a moment to scrawl out a mountain or a bit of coastline when it's the size of the whole map.

Can't say the same trick would work at all if I hadn't been wanting the whole thing to look roughly made anyways. For something more finely detailed I'd have to take much, much longer drawing it all at scale.

Ascension
09-26-2009, 11:53 PM
Looks very nice. I've been meaning to try out my watercolor brushes to do an ocean like that and now you really spark my interest. Well done.

Brodiggan
09-27-2009, 12:00 AM
Looks very nice. I've been meaning to try out my watercolor brushes to do an ocean like that and now you really spark my interest. Well done.

Danke! It took a bit for me to find the right watercolor look, that wasn't a pain to create, in the end the easiest/fastest method for me was to very quickly draw in the entire area I wanted to paint with a 'wet edges' brush in a light blue/green/whatever, duplicate the layer four to five times, set them all to multiply and begin erasing sections of each layer, starting from the outside and working gradually inwards using a soft low flow/opacity brush. The inevitable blots and fades and subtle shifts in saturation are juuust close enough to watercolors to pass. (To my eye at least, I could definitely improve the realism a bit by adding a droplet watermark or two.)

Coyotemax
09-27-2009, 12:46 AM
Nice! I'm actually working my way into that style myself, just started a few days ago.

good work!

Brodiggan
09-27-2009, 12:57 AM
Nice! I'm actually working my way into that style myself, just started a few days ago.

good work!

Thank you very much. (Absolutely blown away by the Celtic knotwork you have in your profile by the way, stunning, stunning stuff. I think Aquos was my favorite, but they were all impressive enough to make me jealous.)

Coyotemax
09-27-2009, 02:28 AM
Thanks (but really, it's jsut developing patience, and practicing over and over and over and over again, heh).

Are you familiar with Joan Blaeu (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joan_Blaeu)? He did a lot of maps in a very similar style, the one that inspired me to start this whole journey. The way you did your border looks almost exactly like the one I'm working on, which is directly based off Joan Blaeu's :)

Google-Fu! hi-ya! (http://images.google.com/images?q=Joan+Blaeu&rls=com.microsoft:en-ca&oe=UTF-8&rlz=&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ei=Bfe-SoL9Aszp8Qa_iumsAQ&sa=X&oi=image_result_group&ct=title&resnum=5)

Pay close attention to this o (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/77/LIVONIA_vulgo_Lyefland-Joan_Blaeu,_1662.jpg)ne..

Brodiggan
09-27-2009, 02:44 AM
Thanks (but really, it's jsut developing patience, and practicing over and over and over and over again, heh).

Are you familiar with Joan Blaeu (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joan_Blaeu)? He did a lot of maps in a very similar style, the one that inspired me to start this whole journey. The way you did your border looks almost exactly like the one I'm working on, which is directly based off Joan Blaeu's :)

Heh, I am indeed, the border I used on mine was based on one of his maps, the Waldeck Comitatus - 1645 (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/4c/Blaeu_1645_-_Waldeck_Comitatus.jpg) (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/4c/Blaeu_1645_-_Waldeck_Comitatus.jpg) and I copied the decoration in the corner from the same map to add a bit of color and fill some negative space I didn't want my players asking too many questions about just yet.

Coyotemax
09-27-2009, 03:27 AM
It's interesting looking at the maps from different dates, you can actually see the style change a bit (not much though). In the map I'm working on, Transylvania, the lighting is from the right on the hills, the hills are a lot more craggy looking (though that might very well be intentional) and the trees are more round - these ones have a bit of definition to them.

Did you use a tablet at all for this? (i so so so need one, lol)

torstan
09-27-2009, 01:23 PM
Lovely work, and thanks for the tips on the watercolour look.

Brodiggan
09-28-2009, 02:39 AM
It's interesting looking at the maps from different dates, you can actually see the style change a bit (not much though). In the map I'm working on, Transylvania, the lighting is from the right on the hills, the hills are a lot more craggy looking (though that might very well be intentional) and the trees are more round - these ones have a bit of definition to them.

Did you use a tablet at all for this? (i so so so need one, lol)

I did use a tablet, nothing too fancy, just a cheap knockoff wacom with some basic pressure sensitivity. Without one, it would have taken much, much longer.


Lovely work, and thanks for the tips on the watercolour look.

Very welcome, I'm happy to share anything useful I've found, though I'm sure there are plenty of people that have stumbled on the same trick in the past. A little extra knowledge never hurts, and maybe the basic technique will give someone else an idea for something even better I can learn in return.

Karro
09-28-2009, 03:51 PM
I must know: is this hand-lettered or done with a font. If with font, I must have your fonts! Reveal to me your secrets!

(Also, repped and rated. This is a very nice water-color style. My only critique: it would be nice to see the forest symbols be more varied in appearance and placement. It looks like maybe there are several trees, but for some reason the way they are placed makes them look very uniform.)

Brodiggan
09-28-2009, 06:27 PM
I must know: is this hand-lettered or done with a font. If with font, I must have your fonts! Reveal to me your secrets!

(Also, repped and rated. This is a very nice water-color style. My only critique: it would be nice to see the forest symbols be more varied in appearance and placement. It looks like maybe there are several trees, but for some reason the way they are placed makes them look very uniform.)

I did the lettering with a font (a few fonts actually) all freely available from dafont.com, Charlemagne (the directional lettering on the edges and Das Weisse Meer), Deutsche Zierschrift (the gothic block lettering in the Heilegwald title), and DeiGratia for the rest.

I hand drew a set of trees, made a tiling pattern, used the pattern brush to paint on sections of forest, then came back and removed/nudged sections here and there to try and break up the pattern a bit, but I think I should maybe have done a bit more on that. Next time I'm going to try making 2-3 versions of the base pattern, with alternate placements, sizes, and types of trees, layering them all and randomly cutting out layers to up the variety considerably.

Karro
09-29-2009, 10:27 AM
I did the lettering with a font (a few fonts actually) all freely available from dafont.com, Charlemagne (the directional lettering on the edges and Das Weisse Meer), Deutsche Zierschrift (the gothic block lettering in the Heilegwald title), and DeiGratia for the rest.

I hand drew a set of trees, made a tiling pattern, used the pattern brush to paint on sections of forest, then came back and removed/nudged sections here and there to try and break up the pattern a bit, but I think I should maybe have done a bit more on that. Next time I'm going to try making 2-3 versions of the base pattern, with alternate placements, sizes, and types of trees, layering them all and randomly cutting out layers to up the variety considerably.

awesome, thanks! I'd rep you for the fonts, but I already repped you for the map, and cannot again for a while.

IngIngsvar
09-30-2009, 06:25 PM
That's a very nice map Broddigan. I especially like the legend there.