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View Full Version : [Award Winner] Saderan a tutorial



Tear
11-25-2009, 04:57 PM
I had some unexpected time off today, so I worked on my first tutorial.

It covers all the basics I used to produce this map (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?t=7920), except for endless noodling over details, of course. ;)

I'll admit I'm not very good at writing, but I hope it's comprehensible.
I tried to make it easy to get into, but I don't know if that worked.
Also, it is probably full of typos.

In any case, I'm glad I was able to get this out before my vacation, so I hope it's helpful to someone out there.

Steel General
11-25-2009, 05:08 PM
I only skimmed through it very quickly, but it looks like you did a good job.

I'll have to give it a whirl sometime.

thesubatomic
11-25-2009, 05:18 PM
Tear, I'm extremely impressed by your maps. Hopefully this will help give me some direction. Thank you very much!

Ramah
11-25-2009, 05:33 PM
Like SG I've only skimmed through the PDF file but it looks really well done. Very professional looking like everything you do.

Looking forward to giving your style a whirl soon. :)

Coyotemax
11-25-2009, 06:59 PM
I did a bit more than skim, but haven't tried it yet. I think I will, this is very thorough and clear. I really do like the way you do the ocean layer, I may incorporate that into the style i'm already using :)

(i tried to rep! really!)

thesubatomic
11-25-2009, 07:19 PM
I got lost on page three. D: We go from working on the paint layer to deleting the Threshold layer and selecting Alpha one? How did we get there? I'm pretty confused. Sorry if this sounds stupid, but the instructions are pretty hard to follow right around that point, starting out at least.

Edit: Disregard. I'm dumb as hell and running on no sleep. xD

Gidde
11-25-2009, 07:51 PM
Looking forward to figuring out how to get this one working in GIMP; great tutorial!

mearrin69
11-25-2009, 08:27 PM
Wow. That's at least the nicest-looking tutorial I have ever seen. Given your amazing results with Saderan I will certainly be giving this a try when I get some spare time. Repped if possible Yeah, guess not. I'll be back!.
M

Coyotemax
11-26-2009, 12:18 AM
So i tested it out.
Not too bad, the only parts I found tedious was setting up the layer styles but that's no reflection on you - i always find that to be my least favourite part :P

I did follow all the steps exactly, the only thing I deviated on was leaving the snow layer off the final product as it seemed to wash out the forest/ground layers a bit much for my liking. I used a few different workflow paths here and there - instead of always using the menu commands once I saw what it was that was being done I might use shortcut keys for example, and i did use my tablet so i skipped the steps for the pen tool to make the rivers - but that's something I became adept at before I got my tablet, so no guilt there :) but I did learn a few new masking tricks i hadn't used before, so yay!

All in all this was quite fun to play with, and the final product is very nice.

I especially liked the use of the adjustment layers at the end.

FAHall
11-26-2009, 12:57 AM
Thanks a ton TEAR!

I noticed that you added in the color numbers that you use (which was very kind of you for the color-handicapped like myself).


I am extremely excited to start working through this tutorial using GIMP.

Hopefully there won't be too many hiccups.


Maybe by the time you get back I'll have some rough work done on my map.


Thanks again,

Alex

ravells
11-26-2009, 03:31 AM
Fantastic Tutorial, Tear. Repped, rated and added to the 'quickstart' thread.

CartoGeo
11-26-2009, 02:55 PM
This I absolutely awesome! I am astonished at finding this tutorial because I wanted you to make one and I even have your map set as my desktop as a perfect example of well crafted world map. To find this tutorial and see that care was taken with it, all I can say is thanks! :)

Tear
11-26-2009, 06:21 PM
Thank you for all your comments. I really hope this tutorial is a contribution that will help some folks.
It's my first one though, so if you have any questions feel free to ask.
I'll be away for a few weeks, but if I don't answer by Christmas, you can be pretty sure my plane crashed.


Looking forward to figuring out how to get this one working in GIMPI don't know much about Gimp, but from what I've read, the use of Layer Styles is a major difference. I used those extensively, so I hope you'll find a workaround.


So i tested it out.
Thanks for giving it a try. To me it looks like you skipped some instructions, but I probably didn't explain them well enough.
Maybe it's because I was using a mouse. Opacity settings are a different matter using a tablet, at least to me.


I am astonished at finding this tutorial because I wanted you to make one [...]

Yes. You wanted me to make one. So if it's bad it's all your fault. :p
Just kidding. Thanks for pushing me.

thesubatomic
11-26-2009, 06:28 PM
I really appreciate this tutorial. It helped me a ton, I was actually able to make something that looked halfway decent. Thanks a ton man!

Tear
11-26-2009, 06:40 PM
Post it. :)

If I'll ever do a tutorial again, I really want to know what worked and what didn't.

thesubatomic
11-26-2009, 06:51 PM
It's in my thread in Regional And World Mapping. I'd love to get some feedback from you.

Coyotemax
11-26-2009, 09:05 PM
Not sure what steps i might have skipped or misinterpreted, besides the river. you're right though, I find myself working with opacity/flow options more with the tablet in the last month or two than I ever have before. It's likely that a few of my typical habits made themselves known while I was working on a few things. That having been said - I learned a few new techniques to add to my methods, and in that respect your tutorial is 100% effective as a starting point for new ideas :)
(and even if it won't let me rep you yet, I did get to rate the thread at least!)

Locution
11-26-2009, 09:52 PM
Thanks a bunch Tear. This looks like a great tut. I can't wait to put it into action.

Diamond
11-26-2009, 09:53 PM
Man, the people on this site continue to impress and amaze me.

Repped!

*edit: not repped yet; got to spread some love around first...

FAHall
11-27-2009, 04:11 PM
I don't know much about Gimp, but from what I've read, the use of Layer Styles is a major difference. I used those extensively, so I hope you'll find a workaround.


This site has a link to a plug-in for GIMP layer styles:

http://laptoplogic.com/resources/configuring-gimp-2.6-to-replace-adobe-photoshop

Eilathen
11-28-2009, 06:24 PM
Trying this out as a total newb with PS CS2 ... and i hit a first snag. I am on page 7, so far all went well...but now i have the base color layer and it is in front of everything...i have only a brown square before me. What happened?

I do not have, with PS CS2, the option Layer>group with previous ... instead it is only Layer>group layers ... is that a problem? From the picture it seems right as it is one step over the land layer a bit to the right... so the hierarchy seems right.

Any ideas what i did wrong?

Thanks in advance.

E.

Tear
11-28-2009, 07:30 PM
"Group with Previous" was renamed to "Create Clipping Mask" in later versions.
Sorry for the confusion.

FAHall
11-28-2009, 11:27 PM
Working through the tutorial right now, and on the first step there is a tricky thing for GIMP users.

We do NOT have a threshold adjustment layer.

I have been able to get a similar effect by simply duplicating the "background" layer and then running the threshold adjustment on the duplicate.

The annoying part is when I get to editing the image (removing or adding land), I am flying blind. I can edit the original cloud image, but I do not get a real-time view of what my brush strokes are doing. So, my first attempt left me with some areas that were too rounded for my taste.


I think this can be worked around, it just involves a bit more of a time commitment from GIMP users.

Perhaps a more experienced GIMP person knows of a better way to work around the lack of Threshold Adjustment Layers. There are on plugins that I can find.


On to the next step!

Katto
11-29-2009, 08:16 AM
Thanks a lot for sharing this wonderful tutorial with us, Tear.
I will definitely try it soon.

Eilathen
11-29-2009, 05:56 PM
"Group with Previous" was renamed to "Create Clipping Mask" in later versions.
Sorry for the confusion.

Cool, that worked. Thanks a lot, Tear. Highly appreciated and very nice tut!

Tom_Cardin
11-30-2009, 08:41 PM
Thanks for the wonderful tutorial! I went through it in about 5 hours so it wasn't terribly fast for me but I wanted to be sure I followed the steps exactly. This introduced me to even more ways to use photoshop and that really rocks.

The only difficulty I had was when it came to stroking the river paths. When I did it they looked very pixelated and after some diagnoses and various efforts I discovered the culprit was the stroke effect on the land layer mask. I changed it to a drop shadow with no distance and made it real tight and that got me a slight stroke that didn't pixelate the river paths. Rivers is where I spent most of the time...if I had skipped that part the rest was probably not much more than 2 hours.

I used this effort to create a world map which contains two regions I have mapped before, Voradin and The Wilderlands of Lords. This involved going back into the initial land mass set up and tweaking some of the areas out to create matching coastlines. Then following the same structure on the mountains, rivers and forest steps.

Tear
12-01-2009, 01:35 PM
Thank you very much for giving it a try.
Are the soft, thin mountains a style choice of yours? Or did you hold back because I encouraged it a tad too much in the text?

Tom_Cardin
12-01-2009, 05:17 PM
The scale of the mountains I did was out of choice. I was going for a whole world and wanted to keep the scale in a range that I thought worked.

Janherbergh
12-04-2009, 08:13 AM
Thanks a lot! I loved your map and wanted to make as ggod as yours. I'll try to follow your tutorial for the one I'm making right now! :)

Gary N. Mengle
12-05-2009, 03:45 AM
Holy cow, even the tutorial is gorgeous. :)

Dalakmar
12-06-2009, 08:40 AM
Just wanted to thank 'Tear' for producing such a 'kick ass' tutorial and upload my first ever map using photoshop.

Ramah
12-08-2009, 07:47 PM
Why isn't this tutorial 5-star rated yet? :s

Every man and his dog wants a Tear map making for their story at the moment and this little puppy tells you exactly how to make one. Come on people... rate this sucker up so that it can claim its rightful place in the pantheon of rather smug, medal-wearing tutorials that jeer at lesser tuts.

Apart from that, I've had a few hours testing this out tonight and so far I am very pleased with the results. It's very easy to follow apart from the previously mentioned Clipping Mask confusion and also I found a place or two in the ocean section where it could do with telling you to deselect your alpha selection.

Hopefully I'll get a chance to finish the tut tomorrow and I'll post up my results so that Tear can recieve a warm, glowy feeling inside.

HighlanderBlood
12-08-2009, 09:46 PM
you are a god amongst men

Ramah
12-09-2009, 04:47 PM
Ok, so this is what I have so far from this tutorial. I thought I'd post an image in this thread as another example of what us lesser non-Tears can expect to achieve through this.

19302

When I started this it was supposed to be a quick test to see what I can do with it, hence using the original Vaniya base map. But I'm pretty sure I'm going to carry on with this and see what I can get out of it in the end so I'll probably have to add the extra rivers etc. that I added to the Aronbor map.

Anyway... loving this tut. Excellent stuff, Tear. Thanks.

Ascension
12-09-2009, 05:20 PM
Great mountain chains, reduces/removes the need for foothills.

ravells
12-09-2009, 06:02 PM
Tear's tutorial is the bomb.

Aenigma
12-09-2009, 08:41 PM
An awesome tutorial!
Sadly, I'm having a few problems with this tutorial...
I'll be quite detailed here, so please excuse the wall of text;).

(Oh, I am using Photoshop CS4)

Part 2 - Page 5
After I've created the "ocean emphasis texture" layer,
I can't "group with previous". I can, however, select both the "ocean emphasis texure" layer and the "ocean emphasis" layer and then group them together by doing:
layer > group layers (or ctrl+G)

Now; I realise that it could simply be because I am using CS4, the point is; I don't know :?...

My second problem is the step afterwards (which I attempted after grouping the "ocean emphasis texture" and the "ocean emphasis" layer with ctrl+G).
When I move on it says that I should;
Edit > Fill ... Pattern (wrinkles) - but there's my problem; I don't have the "wrinkles" pattern! (Or any other pattern for that matter, except "bubbles" and "tie dye")

So basically... How do I add more patterns?


I give many thanks in advance
The end

terminal
12-09-2009, 09:57 PM
I also have CS4 and I think it seems as if it only comes with two textures, but I discovered that if you click the arrow, you will see more textures pools, they've got names like 'Artistic Surfaces', 'Nature Patterns. I simply load append them all. I don't know whether this helps, but I think you will likely find the texture your missing this way.

Coyotemax
12-10-2009, 02:16 AM
Depending on the memory in your system, you may want to be careful with the patterns loaded - each one gets loaded into memory as you go and can slow you down after awhile. You can clear ones out you don't need by using the Preset manager (it's become my friend lately). that having been said, the builtin patterns are usually ok, it's when you end up with a set of 50 or so patterns at 1024x1024 that you might notice :P

terminal
12-10-2009, 03:55 AM
After working on a 25,000 by 12,500 world map I think I am now a master of waiting for Photoshop. It was making Scratch disks 10 gig big. Quite disturbing seeing all my hard disk spacing being warped away.

But thats a good advice especially if you're working with large maps and are already having to deal with huge load times and process times.

ravells
12-10-2009, 04:58 AM
Why isn't this tutorial 5-star rated yet? :s

Every man and his dog wants a Tear map making for their story at the moment and this little puppy tells you exactly how to make one. Come on people... rate this sucker up so that it can claim its rightful place in the pantheon of rather smug, medal-wearing tutorials that jeer at lesser tuts.



I was wondering the same thing too. Pleased to say that it now is and that Tear has received his just reward!

Aenigma
12-10-2009, 08:10 AM
Thanks for the good advice, everyone!

:D

Aenigma
12-10-2009, 09:07 AM
I also have CS4 and I think it seems as if it only comes with two textures, but I discovered that if you click the arrow, you will see more textures pools, they've got names like 'Artistic Surfaces', 'Nature Patterns. I simply load append them all. I don't know whether this helps, but I think you will likely find the texture your missing this way.

Hmm, I can't see any more texture pools when I click the arrow... anyone?

LonewandererD
12-12-2009, 07:58 AM
Hey Tear, great tut.

Been trying to give it a go but i'm stuck on the forests. I've searched through my brushes and I can't seem to find one labelled "Spatter", where is it? Also, i've added the layer effects i'm supposed to add for the forests but my forests are turning out all faded and "smokey", what could i be doing wrong? Is it becuase I have a lighter land colour? I've included a pic to show what i'm talking about.

*EDIT: Please disregard this message, i solved my own problem.

-D-

maqeurious
12-12-2009, 10:37 PM
Tear... thanks so much for this in-depth tute. I've looked through this site and tried a lot of tutorials and haven't found one as easy to follow as yours. The results I got are great! (I just need to learn more about elevations and such lol.) After a bit of research I will try again.

Keep up the awesome work :D


This is my first go and first ever map post so please be nice :D

Fisher kel Tath
12-13-2009, 09:32 AM
well, first I'd like to thank Tear for the great tutorial. I like your style very much.
Therefore I pretty much haven't done anything other since a friend showed me this thread. :D Well, at least while drawing maps ^^

Anyhow, here are the fruits of my labor:
first, my first try with the technics Tear described
second, I used the technics on one of my own maps. It isn't finished yet, the last couple of steps are still missing (lightning etc) and much of the cities, names and roads.



19422

19423

JDCt
12-26-2009, 08:03 PM
The tutorial looks nicely laid out and well done. Looking forward to giving it a try!

Trog
12-27-2009, 04:11 AM
Awesome. Looking forward to giving this a try. Very well done. :)

Vascant
12-28-2009, 02:35 PM
While a lot of the tutorials here are excellent and get printed, very few are so incredible that I actually go and get it printed in color, bound with covers. My wife may use this as evidence as to how how crazy I am spending $10 to print 11 pages.

I also have to add, I did get a new Wacom Intuos 4 from her for Christmas, looks like a perfect starting place as I learn to use it.

Vascant
12-28-2009, 06:44 PM
Started doing the tutorial and must say, on page 5 without any major issues thus far in the process. I did find something that new users will get hung up on perhaps (I did until I used google).

First step on page 5 talks about using Group with previous, in CS2+ this is now Create clipping mask. (This assumed I am understood what I am reading, which sometimes is assuming a great deal).

Like I said, this is more for new users then seasoned/experienced users but could be useful to experienced users who just started using Photoshop since CS2.

Tear
12-28-2009, 07:03 PM
First step on page 5 talks about using Group with previous, in CS2+ this is now Create clipping mask.

You are right.
That issue came up on page 3 of this very thread.
I should really get this into the document along with the "river fix" I mentioned here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?t=8276&page=2).

I'm pretty swamped at the moment but I'll get to it eventually.

Vascant
12-28-2009, 08:56 PM
You are right.
That issue came up on page 3 of this very thread.
I should really get this into the document along with the "river fix" I mentioned here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?t=8276&page=2).

I'm pretty swamped at the moment but I'll get to it eventually.

duh, I should really learn to read all the posts in a thread.

Trog
12-28-2009, 11:45 PM
Well I muddled my way through the tutorial. I too ran in to the demon that was Create Clipping Mask. Luckily after a moment of frustration I looked back at this thread for help and found just the clarification I was looking for.

I have to say that this is an excellent tutorial and I really appreciated the step by step instructions as well as the menu item clarifications in red. When in the middle of a big project like this the last thing you want to do is to have to stop and look up how to do a command that is mentioned in passing.

So I now have a very sweet looking map for my home brew campaign. My players should be very pleased. I know I am. Just got to get names plastered all over this baby and I should be ready to roll. :D

My map (http://home.centurytel.net/jeffsjunk/MapRealistic.jpg)

Ascension
12-29-2009, 12:05 AM
Looks good Trog.

Tear
12-31-2009, 04:32 AM
The document in the first post of the thread was updated to address the issues that came up.

Eilathen
12-31-2009, 07:07 AM
The document in the first post of the thread was updated to address the issues that came up.

Awesome, Tear. That is customer-service at its finest. Thanks again, highly appreciated! I'll give you rep if i can.

(we need a "thumbs up" smilie ;) )

Vascant
12-31-2009, 08:13 PM
The document in the first post of the thread was updated to address the issues that came up.

Thanks, I am slowly working my way through it (while I am renovating the kitchen)

mrrkyl
01-13-2010, 08:46 AM
Thank you for the wonderful tutorial. I used it as my introduction to Photoshop 7.0 and got hung up in a few steps only because of my unfamiliarity with the program. I will definitely be giving it another shot, now that I have a better idea of what I'm doing. ;)

As you can see, the result of my efforts is not as defined as it should be, probably because I slacked on a few layers. I like the way the rivers turned out but next time I'll make them darker. I think my elevation and forest layers are a bit weak, and I also need to add more lakes. Overall, I spent at least 12 hours on this map.

Steel General
01-13-2010, 04:00 PM
I think it looks pretty good, especially for a first run through.

BernieB
01-16-2010, 12:53 PM
Did a quick glance over and can tell this will help me endlessly in my campaign to build my first map. Many thanks for taking the time to make it, share it, and helping us newbs out.

redleg7
01-17-2010, 06:32 AM
Exceptional tutorial!

Thanks.

My first run through was painless, not to mention I learned techniques that I can apply elsewhere.

A GIMP version would be nice.

Quick question:
Can I use a premade shape as my continent instead of generating a random one?

1. Create the alpha channel using my original shape which looks like the "copy merged" pic in the tut (white land mass on black background).
2. Create the land mass layer by stripping away the black background leaving only the white land mass.
3. Create the layer background by rendering clouds.

The only issue I have is the paint layer, which I have no clue how to generate for a shape that is already made. It seems like that step if used to create a random map.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

BernieB
01-17-2010, 03:36 PM
I'm a bit stuck/confused. On the bottom of page 5, it calls to add a new layer and name it "ocean elevation". Am I still using the Alpha 1 selection with the expand and feathered? Or am I using the entire layer? From the pic on page 6 it looks like the entire layer, but the layer mask is colored black and nowhere does it say to fill the layer mask. I'm probably misreading, or missing something, so any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

BernieB
01-17-2010, 03:54 PM
Answered my own question. Fill the layer mask with black and all is well.

Tear
01-17-2010, 05:10 PM
Tanks everyone.

@redleg7: If you use your own land shape I'd recommend selecting the cloud pattern on the background layer and using Image > Adjustments > Levels... and set the Output Levels to 0/128 to start out with. The "paint layer" itself is entirely hand painted in this tutorial. Just paint with a low-opacity soft black brush in the deeper ocean areas until the deepest parts are completely black. You can also use a low-opacity soft white brush to lighten up some coastal areas. As long as you try to keep a balance between not looking too random and not too uniform you should be good to go.

ravells
01-17-2010, 06:28 PM
I had to have a go at this...here's my result (different textures used).

I couldn't quite get the same definition on the ocean floor though.

Thanks Tear, really good tutorial.

My quick comments: I used a brush that has lots of bits sticking out of it and set it to a reasonable scatter when painting the mountains.
Using the 'ocean ripple filter' on mountains also helps to break them up a bit and make foothills.

Grimmr
01-17-2010, 07:41 PM
I have only limited experience with Photoshop, and very little experience with making maps, but here is my attempt. I followed the tutorial almost completely to the letter.

Stormcrowe
01-18-2010, 10:51 PM
Love this tutorial!!! Starting on my second map using it tonight. Quick question though.....On page 3 you resize the image. Is this just a personal preference or is there a reason (other than file size) to resize it?

Tear
01-19-2010, 03:48 AM
It smoothes the coast outlines generated by the threshold layer. You can skip the resizing, but your coastlines will be more pixellated.
If you want a bigger map, say, 1000 pixels wide, just start with 2000 pixels to make sure your outlines will be nice and smooth in the end.

Stormcrowe
01-19-2010, 07:55 AM
That makes sense. Thanks Tear

redleg7
01-21-2010, 10:54 AM
What are the GIMP commands for the following:

Create Clipping Mask/Group with Previous

I know they are the same thing in PS depending on which version your using. I looked at the online gimp doc but have no idea how to do a search.

Edit:

When applying a mask in PS you have the choice of Reveal All/Hide All or Reveal Selection/Hide Selection.

How is this implemented in GIMP? Or does it matter.

TIA

FAHall
01-25-2010, 04:56 PM
What are the GIMP commands for the following:

Create Clipping Mask/Group with Previous

I know they are the same thing in PS depending on which version your using. I looked at the online gimp doc but have no idea how to do a search.

Edit:

When applying a mask in PS you have the choice of Reveal All/Hide All or Reveal Selection/Hide Selection.

How is this implemented in GIMP? Or does it matter.

TIA

This is the biggest limitation of GIMP. It is unable to "Group with Previous". There are some hopes that GIMP 3.0 will have these capabilities, but for now, you're SOL.

FAHall
01-25-2010, 05:08 PM
I finally got my hands on PS CS3, which is really exciting.


I've got a quick question now. I'm on the "Elevation Base" portion of the tutorial, and I cannot seem to get my elevations to look as natural, smooth, and high as yours do. Mine keep either looking funky and low (smaller brush with lower opacity) or getting too big and then flattening out (big brush with higher opacity). For some reason I cannot find a happy medium to make them look as nice as the elevation bases that you have in the tut image.

I tried running the clouds and difference clouds filters to see what those came up with, but they just looked weird. I can't seem to get natural looking elevations.


Any suggestions?

Tear
01-26-2010, 02:53 AM
Most of the time I use low-opacity brushes, but I paint over the same spot several times to slowly build up the shape. It takes a bit longer, but this way I have better control over the outcome.

JohnnyKrysys
02-08-2010, 06:14 PM
Amazing tutorial for an amazing finished product. I ran a quick test map to see if I could replicate the effects and was incredibly happy with the results. Now, it's time to go back and do a full-scale version of some hand drawn maps that I have. I'm pretty well versed in PS (CS3) and have a tablet. Given that, I have a few questions:

1) I'm new at using a tablet (intous3) in PS. Generally, I just use it for animating in Flash. When using it in PS, I was kind of unhappy with the results. It almost seems like flow+opacity are controlled simultaneously with the pressure sensitivity. Is there a way to just isolate "opacity" for the pressure?

2) I'd really like to do a very large scale, full-world map at a large resolution so that I have the option of printing the entire map, or just cropping one continent/island and printing that at a respectable resolution (as opposed to redrawing each continent at a higher res) Do you have any suggestions on optimal resolution size for something like this? (Both physical size and resolution. IE: 2800x1400 @ 300dpi)

3) Given the above, are there any foreseeable problems in your tutorial? I know I'll have to adjust some of the scale/depth settings to accommodate for a larger map. Basically looking for any additional hints you could provide.

Again, thanks a bunch for this amazing tutorial. It was one of the reasons I signed up for the forums. I've always been interested in constructing better looking maps, or stared in awe at some that have been done in various books/publications, both indoor maps and expanse maps. I'm glad I happened upon here!

Thanks for the help!

Tear
02-08-2010, 07:01 PM
Amazing tutorial for an amazing finished product.

Thank you for the kind words.


It almost seems like flow+opacity are controlled simultaneously with the pressure sensitivity. Is there a way to just isolate "opacity" for the pressure?

While this is more of a general Photoshop question, and not a tutorial question, I think you should certainly give your tablet some test runs with Photoshop before starting. Try different settings and see what they do. If you are familiar with the software you are using, it will be easier to introduce variations to the tutorial and in the end get down to your very own style.


Do you have any suggestions on optimal resolution size for something like this?

300 dpi is usually used for high quality printing. That means you have to provide 300 pixels for every inch printed. So a width of 10 inches would need a width of 3000 pixels to make sure it is of crisp quality when printed in a book. A poster on a wall is usually not that demanding, though. It is viewed from a distance, so 200 dpi is usually enough. If your box is a bit on the weak side, you can go to 150 dpi, but I would not recommend going any lower.
Zooming in to show certain locations is an entirely different matter. If your original map is 300 dpi and you zoom in on an area with 200%, it will be effectively 150 dpi. It would be a good idea to determine what detail you need and what your box can handle beforehand.


Basically looking for any additional hints you could provide.

Post a work in progress early and often. There are a lot of people here with a lot of experience. They will give you good advice.

Dain
02-09-2010, 11:12 PM
My turn to give it a try ...

Well, I have no other words than fantastic tutorial man. Awesome step by step tuto, from a very skilled person. I'm very impressed. I know it is hard to write down that kind of high level tuto but you've done it, and you made people very happy, me first! It seems that you gave us the tuto we all hoped for a long time and I can't thank you enough for this. Again, thank you and congratulations.

Here is my feedback for those who are not sure wether it is a good tuto or not ;)
The tutorial is very well made, and everything is clear enough to not be lost in the process. Only 2 little typos are present but if you read carrefully, you should figure it out fairly easily. It is just a matter of color info on page 10, nothing important really.
What makes this tuto very good is that allows you to adjust anything and everything, but still gives you the key to get a good job. I've change quite some values for layer's transparency, patterns and that kind of stuff, because I liked them more. Just a matter of personal taste.

Here is what I've done, in about 4 hours with a tablet. I really like the result and I'm already on something bigger ;)
Hope it helps

Thanks again Tear, you've made an awesome tuto!

TheMarcus7
02-14-2010, 10:26 PM
This tutorial is fun! I've been having a great time using this tutorial to teach myself Photoshop CS3. My project is to update a map we use in a monthly campaign thats been running for almost 10 years and I've run into a bit of a snag. Here is my map up to the Elevations section:

22121

Note the area in the Northwest quadrant circled in red. The black line represents a cliff edge that makes the side to the East a plateau, a couple thousand feet above the area to the West. This is a section of an old map made by a friend of mine showing a representation:

22122

I've messed around with various ways of creating this huge cliff, but so far, nothing that doesn't look really bad. Any suggestions?

.TM7

PS. Its not my world, so I have no control over how improbable that kind of cliff is. Its fits in the history of the world.

TheMarcus7
02-15-2010, 03:20 PM
Hah! Figured it out on my own. The line I was drawing for the "edge" of the plateau was too wide, so when I tried to bevel it, the bevel was too wide. Gonna move this to the Regions WIP forum (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?9304-Continent-of-the-Kingom-of-the-West-and-former-Empire&p=102090&viewfull=1#post102090).

.TM7

nemasis
03-08-2010, 11:17 PM
This is one of the best tuts I have seen in a long time! Not to many people take the time to explain all the details you did!

Thanks a ton for this. Even if I am not happy with the turn out of my map, I now have a far better understanding of how to use masks to my advantage.

My work thus far:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1628241/EpicMap_Test.jpg

Nemasis

guyanonymous
03-10-2010, 12:27 PM
This is a great tutorial.

Your instructions were clear, and I appreciated how you provided the menu-based instructions as well as verbal descriptions. I learned a lot, and finally understand masks a bit better.

You may appreciate knowing it works, unmodified, on a 30000x15000 pixel image. Alas, that image (in .psb format) saves out at 15.5 gigs with all the layers left modifiable. Ouch. (64bit PS & Vista 64x)

I really appreciate how well it works with land-masses, elevations, etc. exported from FT Pro and placed onto the various layer masks for mountains, hills, etc. I just need to adjust/tweak those peaks (white areas) in mountains that show up...and of course start adjusting things for better position (not in the middle of continents). It's a great start, and I'm liking the look/feel.

I'm off to experiment with doing the same with climate regions....hmm....can I have one type of climate show up as white, while the others show up as black only? Hmmm....

Thanks again!

p.s., your procedure (minus the mask-painting) also plugs into the action structure well, allowing some great repeatability for different maps.

guyanonymous
03-10-2010, 07:44 PM
My first experiments with climate haven't been too successful...but that's ok. I refined experiments with altitudes/textures coming out of FT Pro and being fed into the layer masks for elevation/hills/mountains/peaks/ice. Here's where I'm at so far. Everything (except the one experiment with forests) is based on exports (repeatable for any map made there) from FT Pro and with changes only made using in-photoshop menu commands (repeatable).

22753

Thanks again for sharing this excellent (and educational) tutorial.

Gus
03-11-2010, 09:28 AM
That's a very beautiful style, specially the ocean.

guyanonymous
03-11-2010, 01:30 PM
I played more with the default layers setup by Tear's excellent tutorial. I concentrated on the mountain ranges specifically.

In adjusting the bevel/emboss settings, I adjusted SIZE and DEPTH for the hills, mountains, and peaks layers, increasing those two settings for most layers, in some cases maxing them out. I also adjusted the levels on the layer masks to accentuate the shadows, midtones, and highlights of the layer masks themselves on each of those layers AND the ice layer. This allowed me to use the same starting height map (blurred to taste) for each - essentially a straight gray-scale output from FT Pro (as everything in the map is so far).

Next step for the mountain side of things - starting to add in a bit more irregularity to the mountain ranges using brushes (I like dual brushes with a lot of randomness in opacity, orientation, size, etc)... if anyone has suggestions that way...let me know :D

Tear - thanks again for a great tutorial.

gejiaxu
04-14-2010, 01:26 AM
Hi All,

This is my first post--found this site a few days ago and I am totally hooked. I love maps and know a fair bit about using PS, though mostly for photo retouching, basic graphic design, and pixel art, never anything as complex as a composite map from scratch.

I actually stumbled across the Cartographer's Guild while looking for ways to draw a world map for my SRPG (Olithum (http://apps.underscoregames.com/blog/)), which will eventually need one.

I plan on practicing this art for quite some time, and trying out lots more tutorials to hopefully come up with my own style. I tried out this particular tutorial just to learn some techniques; my results are far from perfect and there isn't really much unique about the map, since I didn't want to spend too much time fiddling with any one component, but I thought I'd post it for others to see anyway. I followed the tutorial pretty closely and it took about 4 hours to complete.

Very, very nice work on the tutorial! Thanks!

23789

matfe
06-17-2010, 01:43 PM
very nice, BIG THANKS!

My first try (3 hours!)


The black lines should be borders. Now i have to think about how to paint cities and text...

Mr.Sprinkles
07-09-2010, 04:23 AM
My first try...what a great tutorial!

http://i859.photobucket.com/albums/ab159/Soup777/denraethon.png?t=1278663718

My next try will be to improve upon the mountain ranges like guyanonymous has done, it really makes the map look great like Saderan.

pouncer330
07-10-2010, 05:38 PM
Tear, thanks for the tut. I haven't tried it yet, but intend to soon.

My suggestion would be flesh out your tutorial a bit with a few more examples, publish it as an ebook on amazon, and make some money off of it.

Drekkan85
11-13-2010, 09:39 PM
Incredibly new guy (to photoshop and map making). I'm desperately trying to make it work... but I just cannot do it. I get to Stage 3 - the creation of land. I start creating the various layers then we get to "paint white" to create different elevations. No matter WHAT I do it doesn't change.

Ever.

Ever.

Same for the technique of making mountains. I can't seem to ever create any kind of elevation. If someone has some idea of what's going wrong, can you please, please, help me.

nanoleopard
11-19-2010, 05:49 PM
ugh, for the part where it says create new threshold layer, i, for some reason can't...
do you know why?
if you do, please reply me...

Ascension
11-22-2010, 08:15 PM
It should be right there at the top of the screen next to File, Edit, Image, "Layer" - click on that and scroll down the list to "New Adjustment Layer" then scroll down to "Threshold". If you can't do that then make sure that you're Mode is the right thing - ie Click on Image, scroll down to Mode then scroll down the list...make it RGB 8 bits.

Waits
12-12-2010, 01:07 PM
Fantastic...thank you so much for taking the time to post such a great tutorial.

mytheory
12-20-2010, 05:21 AM
I'm very impressed with your map... Thanks for the tutorial ;)

Rhotherian
12-27-2010, 07:39 AM
I had some unexpected time off today, so I worked on my first tutorial.

It covers all the basics I used to produce this map (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?t=7920), except for endless noodling over details, of course. ;)

I'll admit I'm not very good at writing, but I hope it's comprehensible.
I tried to make it easy to get into, but I don't know if that worked.
Also, it is probably full of typos.

In any case, I'm glad I was able to get this out before my vacation, so I hope it's helpful to someone out there.

The tutorial seems very good, but there's one potentialy majour problem. I don't have Photoshop, I have GIMP. And I'm incapable of purchasing Photoshop for multiple reasons.

Would it be possible for someone to translate this tutorial for use in GIMP?

simone
12-29-2010, 05:17 PM
I have not the rights words to say "thank you" as I would like! I was looking a way to create my island and in this forum (and in this tutorial) my solution! Thank you very much, it's a great tutorial!

silvijanus
12-29-2010, 07:29 PM
great tutorial, but i can get past one point,page 3. Load selection alpha 1, on that point I'm losing it. Deleting threshold1 and loading alpha1 and all goes wrong. At first I have black background,white land, and cloud filter in background. After this part
"Threshold 1": Layer > Delete > Layer,its not working for me.
edit: I solved it somehow,other way around..huh

cae
01-01-2011, 09:39 PM
Thanks man! Now I just need photoshop!:lol:

papaholmz
01-09-2011, 11:07 PM
Awesome tutorial; thanks!

Rhotherian
01-15-2011, 03:38 AM
Would it be possible for someone to translate this tutorial into something for GIMP?

Gidde
01-15-2011, 07:10 AM
I've tried before and got stuck, I may try again soon ... there are a few steps that have to be completely revamped for gimp because they count on photoshop-specific behavior.

Rhotherian
01-15-2011, 02:43 PM
I've tried before and got stuck, I may try again soon ... there are a few steps that have to be completely revamped for gimp because they count on photoshop-specific behavior.

Looks like we need someone who's an expert in both Photoshop and GIMP to do the translation...

Droden
01-15-2011, 03:10 PM
Nice job.

There are a few steps missing to make the tutorial do-able by a complete Photoshop newbie like me. For example, there are a couple placed that I'm sure I have to deselect everything (CTRL-D) in order to to get things to work as expected. I also didn't have any patterns by default, so I had a bit of trouble finding the Wrinkles and Rock patterns. A few more pictures of intermediate steps would be great, including some snapshots of the layers palet to make sure I'm on the right track.

AslanC
01-16-2011, 05:52 PM
Great tutorial, gonna try and take a stab at it.

One question though, can you provide some further specification to the terms "big, soft" and "small, soft" for brushes? As well as opacities that you use?

I ask simply because what you think is big and what I think is big might not be the same, ditto for soft.

Cheers!

Will be starting a WIP thread soon for this :)

Askira
04-06-2011, 12:32 PM
Thank you Tear for a wonderful tutorial. It will really set me on my way.

http://img543.imageshack.us/img543/9580/testmap.png

Vandy
04-07-2011, 11:02 AM
Hey, all.

Tear's "Saderan - A Tutorial" has been linked in the Tutorials in PDF Format (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?4987-Tutorials-in-PDF-Format) thread.

The link can be found on page one in the PHOTOSHOP-RELATED TUTORIALS section of post two.

Enjoy.

Regards,

Vandy

krellos
04-09-2011, 01:13 AM
Hello, all! Newbie map-maker here. I am following the latest tutorial PDF and am stuck on p. 6. I can follow all the instructions about Pattern Overlay and Emboss, and my Layer Mask seems to be selected; but when I attempt to build up my coast shelves, nothing seems to be visible happening. And then the next instruction: Layer Mask: Paint White makes no sense to me! Any suggestions? Thanks.

eViLe_eAgLe
04-09-2011, 01:40 AM
I have not done this tutorial. But, I believe that you Ctrl I the layer mask -I easily get confused with masks and stuff I also usually forget the name's of the parts of Photoshop so I might not be totally reliable. And, if I am reading it the right way.. >_> - and paint with white.
-I easily get confused with masks and stuff I also usually forget the name's of the parts of Photoshop so I might not be totally reliable. And, if I am reading it the right way.. >_> -
Ps: I am also a noob. So, my help might not be entirely reliable.

Whip It
05-14-2011, 10:26 AM
Here's something I just finished with your tutorial, in case you're interested.

Ukko
05-21-2011, 05:07 PM
Cool tutorial Tear. I, being a photoshop noob when it comes doing anything more complicated than making sigs, found it easy enough to follow.:D
Here is my attempt. Doesn't feel right to me. But this is my first go at it.
http://i574.photobucket.com/albums/ss184/Folksky/Map2.jpg

coldwarkid
05-22-2011, 07:23 PM
I'm new here and a novice cartographer whose been scratching around for the right resources and tips for quite a while. Your mapping style is very much in the vein that I aspire to. I look forward to getting everything I can out of your tutorial. Thanks for taking the time. This old dog needs to learn a few new tricks.

Thanks.

:D

Jack Trick
05-29-2011, 09:54 PM
Nice job.

There are a few steps missing to make the tutorial do-able by a complete Photoshop newbie like me. For example, there are a couple placed that I'm sure I have to deselect everything (CTRL-D) in order to to get things to work as expected. I also didn't have any patterns by default, so I had a bit of trouble finding the Wrinkles and Rock patterns. A few more pictures of intermediate steps would be great, including some snapshots of the layers palet to make sure I'm on the right track.

If I might ask, where did you find the patterns? I'm looking for them as well.

edit: actually, nevermind! I was able to find them buried within CS4

ariellajem
06-12-2011, 04:50 AM
I can't recall ever posting on the forum, just lurking mostly. I am, however, starting a novel next month and wanted to do a little world building so here I am. This tutorial was incredibly helpful and I thought I would share my WIP that resulted from messing around using this tutorial as a basic guide. Thanks so much for helping out storytellers who need something more visually stimulating than bad pencil sketches. :D

http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f11/ariellajem/th_Finished-Blank-Continent.jpg (http://s44.photobucket.com/albums/f11/ariellajem/?action=view&current=Finished-Blank-Continent.jpg)

Viator
08-21-2011, 01:17 PM
Great tutorial :)
It really helped me out, and I got a nice, good looking result at the end.

Tear
08-21-2011, 06:19 PM
Thanks to all who replied in this thread.
I'm not a regular these days, but I appreciate all of your comments nonetheless.

arsheesh
08-22-2011, 02:05 PM
Good to see you again Tear, you are definitely missed.

Cheers,
-Arsheesh

Alex
08-24-2011, 06:17 PM
I hope I am allowed to post in this thread.

I just wanted to say that the tutorial is easy to follow and absolutely lovely. I rarely ever touch my Photoshop so its just a giant mess of commands to me, but the tutorial led me to each step easily (with the exception of the locating for the first time of course xD), so that's really great for the novices of PS. I'm gonna head off and try at the tutorial now :P

Thank you for sharing with us! Also, your map is absolutely gorgeous! :D

ScotlandTom
11-09-2011, 11:14 PM
This tutorial is simply incredible. I think my only critique would be that it suggests an initial canvas size of 1000x1000 pixels and then it suggests that you halve the size later on. 500x500 pixels is almost completely useless as far as printing is concerned, especially if you want a final product that will print at a good poster size.

That said, I would like to reiterate how completely and utterly fantastic this tutorial is. It is easy to follow and understand and for anyone familiar with Photoshop it's also incredibly easy to tweak to one's own liking. I love the style of map this tutorial provides and plan on making more maps using what I've learned here in the future.

39813

Tadiera
11-27-2011, 07:36 PM
So I hope I'm not posting somewhere people... er, aren't anymore.

I should have read the thread before I started.
With the Group / Clipping Mask deal, I just made... groups in the layers area. I figured it was just for ease of organization and somehow I managed to stumble my whole way to the rivers step. *cough* I'm glad I've saved a lot of stages, because I'm afraid I know the answer to my own question.

Nothing happens when I select the Land Mask to use the brush to stroke the river path. I recall earlier times when erasing/adding on the Land Mask did nothing, but I kind of brute forced my way through. Is there any way to fix it now? I'm not a TOTAL PS newb, but a lot of this stuff is beyond what I usually do.

Alex
12-03-2011, 10:22 PM
I was suggested to ask my question here, so I hope I did not break any rules or anything. :blush:


How does one go about getting the land's shape to come out like the shape/edges of the maps, for example, generated in Saderan's tutorial? I have run a scanned image in through Photoshop but I cannot figure out how to do the next steps on an existing image. Is there any way to do such a thing to drawn/etc etc maps?

@Tadiera:

I might be able to help. It happened to me a few times in CS5. First, let's see if this fixes it:


Nothing happens when I select the Land Mask to use the brush to stroke the river path. I recall earlier times when erasing/adding on the Land Mask did nothing, but I kind of brute forced my way through. Is there any way to fix it now? I'm not a TOTAL PS newb, but a lot of this stuff is beyond what I usually do.

Make sure you set the brush to 100% and have the proper settings for the brush. Click on the Paths layers > NEW PATH (little sheet of paper; will automatically be named) > Press [P]> DRAW RIVERS > GO TO LAYERS > LAND LAYER (make sure you get the mask selected) > PRESS [D] > PRESS [B] > SET BRUSH TO 100% (and the settings) > CLICK PATH TAB > RIGHT CLICK PATH 1 > SELECT STROKE PATH > UNCHECK SIMULATE PRESSURE > MAKE SURE "BRUSH" IS SELECTED FROM THE DROPDOWN BOX > PRESS OKAY > DONE. :)

Jeff6016
12-17-2011, 09:28 PM
Hi everyone,

I am working my way through this fantastic tutorial, but I have run into a snag.

Page 5, second column instructs us to duplicate the "ocean shallow" layer and label it "ocean shallow variation". After doing so, we are instructed to lock the layer and set it to overlay. So far, so good. But then I try to follow the next instruction, which tells us to apply a cloud filter and PS7 tells me "Could not complete the Clouds command because the selected area is empty". I'm sure I missed something, but in going back over things I just can't see it.

Can anyone help?

-Jeff

ScotlandTom
12-21-2011, 11:17 PM
Typically when using filters the "selected area is empty" error comes up when you've attempted to apply a filter to a layer that has not yet been painted on. When I'm working this is usually because I've created a brand new, completely empty layer and attempted to apply a filter. Check to ensure you have the correct layer selected, then make sure that layer actually has something on it before applying the filter. If your "ocean shallow variation" layer is empty it could mean that you accidentally created a new layer instead of copying the "ocean shallow" layer, either that or the "ocean shallow" layer you duplicated was also empty.

In the tutorial, pg 5, second column, under the [Layer > Duplicate Layer... > "ocean shallow variation"] instruction there is a graphic that shows what your layers palette should look like. Notice that both your "ocean shallow" and "ocean shallow variation" layer icons should appear to have a gray/white checkerboard pattern with white splotches on it. If all you see is the gray/white checkerboard then your layer is empty and needs to be filled with something in order to have the Render Clouds filter applied to it.

Hope that helps!

rjames112
01-08-2012, 02:21 PM
I am somewhat stuck on page 7 with the elevation base. I opted to use difference clouds to get the base down for the elevation, but I cannot tweak it, each time I do it just gives me a perfect circle. I assume my brush size is too big but even making it a small, low opacity brush I still cannot replicate results.

Altuno
01-09-2012, 03:42 AM
Great work!

I've been able to create something quite respectable, however there is one problem.

Where did you get the patterns used in your guide?

rjames112
01-11-2012, 01:39 AM
Ok past the first problem, now I cannot for the life of me get my rivers to show.

Thesslian
01-21-2012, 04:06 PM
You could give lessons on how to write tutorials. Having read a ton of them I think yours was about the best I have seen. I just finished going through this. Turned out pretty decent, though "Oh god no" did enter my mind when you wanted me to use the pen tool. I dread that thing. I may have slipped up somewhere since when I went to place the forests the elevations layer was above the base color and blocked everything until I moved it. Looks pretty decent though. All that anime I colored is seeping into my brain saying it needs to be brighter. Maybe a lens flare or two. I should probably ignore those inclinations though.

RJames112, you might make sure you are on the mask layer when you tell it to stroke the river and not the land layer next to it. At least I kept making that mistake when I was trying.

Michael Stenmark
01-21-2012, 05:20 PM
Great tutorial!
For the inexperienced Photoshop user that might be hard at first. Still it is a great tutorial.

gokufan87
01-26-2012, 01:41 AM
Tear, this a fantastic tutorial, and a great help. But I have one question. You're working at a relatively small image size, and after trying the cloud filter on a large canvas, I understand why. But how do you go about upscaling the map for presentation? The one I'm working on, I've made the size of my desktop wallpaper, at 500 dpi, and I still get VERY jagged, pixelated edges with just a small zoom factor. Any help or advice you could offer would be greatly appreciated.

atomfullerene
01-27-2012, 09:25 PM
I don't know much about anything, but I know fractal patterns are scaleable. There should be some way to adjust the cloud render to make the "clouds" bigger

razcor
01-30-2012, 07:34 AM
I must thank you very much for your accurate and useful tutorial! It's outstanding...

Used to make my first map, WIP at the moment, here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?17208-Mak-h-rag-WIP)in Regional/World Mapping

This is the latest version:

41673

SteamKat
03-01-2012, 12:14 AM
I really liked this style of map, because the main Saderan map reminds me of when I used to sneak looks in the big world atlas that was in our Elementary School library. I always wanted to know 'what was out there' and I would wonder what it would look like for real. The maps were to me, the first photographs of the other side of the world. I decided that since he had a tutorial up (The one I'm replying to..) that I would share my progress. I must admit however, that "Step Two" had me confounded a few times. :) I just have a hard time going down one column then back up to read hte rest, and not go straight down as the pages in the PDF go. I found I had to back up several times, erase 4 layers of work - because either it didn't make sense, or I knew I had gotten confused with order again. I kept trying, throwing in a few tricks I know, and this is how my sea floor is turning out thus far.. - I do have plans to make parts of my 'ocean' much more prominent, but I love the downplayed aspect of this. I think I'm going to continue with the method of a muted ocean map - or perhaps do another version where the lands are muted - and 'unimportant'. However, so far, this is what I have. :) I thought I would share, because quite frankly I'm a little proud of it! This took me most of today to work on.42649

gbmoore
03-23-2012, 01:55 PM
I am somewhat stuck on page 7 with the elevation base. I opted to use difference clouds to get the base down for the elevation, but I cannot tweak it, each time I do it just gives me a perfect circle. I assume my brush size is too big but even making it a small, low opacity brush I still cannot replicate results.


Ok past the first problem, now I cannot for the life of me get my rivers to show.

How did you get this to work for you? I'm having similar issues. No matter what I do I can't seem to get any elevation.

Baxder
04-03-2012, 03:20 AM
Incredible! I have had a homebrew world that has spent years in pitiful penciled mediocrity as I've dreamed of coming across someone who could turn it into something respectable. In the meantime I've gained PS experience, but never had to use it creatively like this, so couldn't put the pieces together to do so. Now I find this, read it, and realize I can do it! I've begun already, and will be putting up a WIP....wherever they go. I hope the idea of using a hand-drawn, scanned map as a land mass basis will be helpful.

All I did was scan the fore-mentioned map, trace the coastlines and fill in the inland bodies of water with a small black brush (on another layer, of course), then fill the oceans black with the paint bucket. Make that the background layer for the "Clouds/Threshold" set, and tweak the clouds layer opacity to taste. I went with 60-ish%. After some cleaning up, it broke up the coast nicely, filled the oceans with various, surprisingly geologically sound archipelligos, and added a few inland lakes for my consideration. That's as far as I've got so far, having to restart the process twice for various failures on my part to pay attention to some important details that really messed things up later that I couldn't figure out how to fix.

I'm gratly encouraged by seeing other's work here. Razcor...a-ma-zing! I absolutely love your ocean floor and river deltas. And kat, your ocean does indeed look impressive. I love the paw!

Does anyone have an idea for making large plateaus, like mongolia-style? I could also use help making a few smaller, yet still very large ridges, and several small but very tall rock spires.

Thanks! I'm sure my stay will be short-lived, but I'd appreciate any help you guys can give me, and I'll try to contribute things I figure out along the way.

Joshua
04-03-2012, 11:53 AM
How did you get this to work for you? I'm having similar issues. No matter what I do I can't seem to get any elevation.

In addition to the low opacity, choose a brush (or tweak a brush) with a very soft edge. The first row of brushes have hard edges, but see where the numbers start over again? That first "restart" is the soft edge section. :)

Baxder
04-03-2012, 11:53 AM
Sorry for the double post; one should be gone soon.

Anyways, here's my WIP thread (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?18222-My-first-(real)-map). I ran into a little trouble painting in the ocean elevations, (p.5 of the tutorial), but even with that issue I'm really happy with it so far! Please let me know what you think!

EDIT: I mention in my WIP thread the trouble I was having with the "Ocean Elevation" layer. As I was trying to figure it out I thought there had to be an easier way, so I re-arranged a couple of the ocean layers and played with bevel/emboss effects and opacities until I liked what I saw. Check out the attachment for how I re-stacked the layers. I won't go into details unless someone asks me to.

niittaaja
04-13-2012, 06:45 AM
cant wait to try and make my own maps

sigkate
04-27-2012, 06:37 PM
Thank you! I am looking forward to using this to create my ACKS campaign maps!

Joe Smith
06-04-2012, 06:07 AM
Okay - i have restarted the tut about 4 times and i am finally getting the hang of it. This is how far i have gotten. i tried putting in mountain ranges but they just didnt make sense so im going to try again tomorrow!45383

carsonw
06-06-2012, 06:22 PM
Tried it. Worked well for me.

raddue
06-15-2012, 03:49 AM
Alright, so for the life of me I cannot figure out how to properly get rivers to show up using this method. Even with switching my brush to 100% opacity, 100% flow, 3 pixels and 100% hardness and following all of the other instructions to the letter, they do not draw. What they are seemingly doing is filling in the water layers, even though I have the Land layer selected. What I mean is that it's doing is creating land bridges in water instead of rivers in land, if that makes sense. I have tried switching the colors around and nothing changes.

Help? I'm using CS6.

Thesslian
06-15-2012, 04:36 AM
Alright, so for the life of me I cannot figure out how to properly get rivers to show up using this method. Even with switching my brush to 100% opacity, 100% flow, 3 pixels and 100% hardness and following all of the other instructions to the letter, they do not draw. What they are seemingly doing is filling in the water layers, even though I have the Land layer selected. What I mean is that it's doing is creating land bridges in water instead of rivers in land, if that makes sense. I have tried switching the colors around and nothing changes.

Help? I'm using CS6.

It's been a while since I did this one, but I think the problem is that you are on the land layer. You need to be on the land layers layer mask. It sounds like you are stroking the land layer, which would add more land rather than stroking the layer mask, which would remove land. Try clicking on the layer mask and then stroke the path. I think that will fix your problem.

Janden
06-15-2012, 06:38 PM
Man, this was awesome. I managed to replicate something similar, but I couldn't get a few of the steps to work just right, but I am satisfied with what came out. The predominant issue I ran into was that I was reworking an already existing map outline that I stole from a larger world map I made a long time ago, so I basically couldn't use the initial Clouds/Difference Clouds technique. I also just used the magic wand tool for the rivers instead of the pen tool. At any rate, thank you for such an awesome tutorial!


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raddue
06-15-2012, 07:45 PM
It's been a while since I did this one, but I think the problem is that you are on the land layer. You need to be on the land layers layer mask. It sounds like you are stroking the land layer, which would add more land rather than stroking the layer mask, which would remove land. Try clicking on the layer mask and then stroke the path. I think that will fix your problem.
Thank you for the super fast response!

Turns out I somehow skipped the step where you make the mask for the Land layer. After going back and putting it in and regrouping all of the layers above it it works perfectly. Thanks!

Baxder
07-06-2012, 04:27 PM
Done. I can't thank you enough for this tutorial; I've waited a long time for this!

The one most common critique I get is that the coastlines are too smooth. I'm rather ambivalent about it, but wonder if anyone has any ideas for roughing them up? I've tried a few low-level things that haven't really worked.

Phae O' Brien
07-09-2012, 11:09 PM
This is definitely the best tutorial I've come across so far! Thank you so much for this!

I'm in the process of applying it to my own world's lineart and so far the results are simply amazing!!! :D I will be posting the results of it when the map is finished!

TristanGregory
07-11-2012, 03:44 PM
For GIMP Users: The earlier link to a GIMP plugin implementing layer styles is broken. Here is a new link. I have not yet tried them out but intend to do so. Hopefully it will help us make use of this wonderful tutorial. :)

http://registry.gimp.org/node/186

TristanGregory
07-13-2012, 10:17 PM
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Well, not quite the style I set out to create. Using the GIMP layer style substitutes is a bit wonky - you need to do your painting and then apply them, but I got used to the process. I messed up a bit with the scale and stuff for the land, so the coast and land styles don't match up. Once I realized I had gone more or less off the tutorial, I decided to start experimenting and ended up with something that is serviceable if not nearly as beautiful as the Saderan style I set out to create.

Well, I'll keep trying. This first attempt was damn instructive, though. Thanks again for the tutorial, Tear! It's teaching me a lot.

rahta
09-02-2012, 07:52 AM
That's a great tutorial indeed. Thank you for sharing it, Tear, but now that i have the landmasses ready, the mountains, rivers and everything i am not quite sure how to proceed. I am at the last step (placing the vegetation) but i have no idea how to make deserts. Could someone give me a tip or anything?

Yusaku Asano
09-03-2012, 09:56 AM
Ok, so this is what I have so far from this tutorial. I thought I'd post an image in this thread as another example of what us lesser non-Tears can expect to achieve through this.

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When I started this it was supposed to be a quick test to see what I can do with it, hence using the original Vaniya base map. But I'm pretty sure I'm going to carry on with this and see what I can get out of it in the end so I'll probably have to add the extra rivers etc. that I added to the Aronbor map.

Anyway... loving this tut. Excellent stuff, Tear. Thanks.

3 years after you did the map a congratulation from me. Really one of my favorite of this style. How did you manage to make these very good looking mountains (if you remember after all this time)?


And of course, Saderan you did really great job with your tutorial. :)

Amae Mariendel
09-13-2012, 03:45 PM
Hello, I just wanna know, how I can make that tutorial with photoshop CS3.
Because I just have this version and I really want make a map for Dungeons Dragon for my world. Thanks for help!

Sorry for my english I am a begginer with this language :)

Yusaku Asano
09-14-2012, 08:54 AM
Hello, I just wanna know, how I can make that tutorial with photoshop CS3.
Because I just have this version and I really want make a map for Dungeons Dragon for my world. Thanks for help!

Sorry for my english I am a begginer with this language :)

I have photoshop 6 and this tutorial works great for my version. I suppose you will not have any problem with photoshop 3.

Vellum
09-14-2012, 08:42 PM
Amae I used CS3 for the one in progress in my thread, seems to follow along nicely.

Rokugan
10-16-2012, 02:51 PM
Awesome tutorial!! this is what I really needed!


My result (with some personal adjustment)
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aquarits
11-15-2012, 01:09 PM
Thanks to this tutorial i started seach more and gave me the vision that wut i can do trying map.

Thanks a lots for open my eyes :)

PS. Just found problens trying to do the sea effects around the coast... cant undertand the channel things :?::?:

Drakedragon
01-01-2013, 03:36 PM
This tutorial is amazing and I've been following it well enough. The only problem is I noticed there are certain terrain types it doesn't cover like marshes/swamps and deserts. Any advice for those?

Hoppydapunk
01-21-2013, 10:18 PM
My first attempt with this tutorial. I'm new at this, and felt this tutorial did a great job introducing a lot of excellent tools to use. Excited to continue using this to help me worldbuild!

RobA
01-25-2013, 02:45 PM
My first attempt with this tutorial. I'm new at this, and felt this tutorial did a great job introducing a lot of excellent tools to use. Excited to continue using this to help me worldbuild!

Your attachment failed - care to re-upload? Or post it as a WIP in the WIP forums.

-Rob A>

Inebrious
04-26-2013, 10:51 PM
This tutorial is amazing and I've been following it well enough. The only problem is I noticed there are certain terrain types it doesn't cover like marshes/swamps and deserts. Any advice for those?

Same question that he had, also any tips on giving the mountains a bit more oompf so they stand out a little more?

Info on the labeling, borders, snazzy symbols and such on his Saderan map would also be appreciated, but mainly just curious about mountains and those other terrain types :)

Miranda Hartrampf
06-13-2013, 11:34 PM
oh goodness this tutorial is kind of amazing. thank you so much!

Globu
07-08-2013, 06:15 PM
First time poster, first time doing any of this, totally new to any serious usage of graphics design software. This is extremely helpful! Thanks! :D

Coming from a pretty much totally new perspective, I can echo that there are a couple of spots where I didn't know from the tutorial to deselect my land selection, and ended up, for example, only filling the ocean texture under the land (thus having no effect except slightly on the coastlines -- or is that intended?). I'm still going through it for the first time, but I will probably go through it again and, if it would be helpful, I could point out exactly where those spots were.

But the thing that's totally kicking my butt and I would so wildly appreciate any help with, is the mountain drawing thing. You (Tear) have such nice smooth elevation there, and I've seen some beautiful mountains in this thread, but I can't figure out for the life of me how to do that. I've been experimenting with all sorts of brushes, and only recently have even come close to anything that isn't nose-scrunching. Or at least that is less nose-scrunching.

Would anyone mind giving some very specific methodology advice on how to do the mountains? I'd hugely appreciate it! I'm using a tablet and PS5.1, for the record.

Here's what I've come up with so far. :/

559125591355914

JakeThumbs
09-20-2013, 06:15 PM
A few things I, as a rank amateur, find difficult:

My version of photoshop doesn't have the "Group with last layer" menu command referenced, so I do it manually by highlighting the two layers and selecting group --> layers, I don't think I did it right.

The "wrinkle" function on my photoshop is much more aggressive than his, it really wrinkles up the ocean and you have to turn it down.

I'm not clear when to deselect the selections you make with the mask, sometimes it seems like the selection should be left in place when moving to the next step, sometimes it doesn't. I end up frequently applying ocean effects across my land masses.

I am using photoshop 12.0.4

Zahr
11-21-2013, 10:51 AM
Group with last layer/group with previous is simply called create clipping mask in later versions of Photoshop.

Nite
11-29-2013, 12:06 PM
Made this bad boy last nigh, took me a while but i think its beautiful. Thanks for the great tutorial.

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Loki23
01-24-2014, 05:00 AM
Brand new to both the forums and to Photoshop and just THANK YOU!

Absolutely stunning tutorial that even a complete novice (/idiot) like me could follow easily.

Thank you once again and now it's back to it for a second attempt.

Lyrillies
01-28-2014, 06:32 PM
Hey there,
thanks for this amazing tutorial! It is so great to be able to learn how to make maps like that, thanks for taking the time and putting together this tutorial for others!
I only have some difficulties with making my land look as big as it actually is and not like a small island, but I'll just try again. :)

SJS
02-11-2014, 10:56 PM
Thank you for this great tutorial. I learned / started to dimly re-remember a lot about Photoshop. So much more to learn. Here's my first map, following closely to your tutorial. I love it. A great starting point.

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Sarcasm1333
02-12-2014, 12:32 PM
Hello, all! Newbie map-maker here. I am following the latest tutorial PDF and am stuck on p. 6. I can follow all the instructions about Pattern Overlay and Emboss, and my Layer Mask seems to be selected; but when I attempt to build up my coast shelves, nothing seems to be visible happening. And then the next instruction: Layer Mask: Paint White makes no sense to me! Any suggestions? Thanks.

Having this same issue. I believe I have followed all the steps correctly but when I paint onto the layer mask absolutely nothing happens. Tried hiding the layer and mask to see if maybe it was just super subtle but there is no discernible effect at all.

SJS
02-13-2014, 10:06 PM
Having this same issue. I believe I have followed all the steps correctly but when I paint onto the layer mask absolutely nothing happens. Tried hiding the layer and mask to see if maybe it was just super subtle but there is no discernible effect at all.

I find that if I click and drag my paintbrush, very little seems to happen. However, if I put my brush in a spot and then click, or click repeatedly, I get a definite change in the appearance of the ocean. If you switch to a harder brush or higher opacity, you should see something happening (you can always undo if it's not subtle enough). Another thing you can do is to temporarily turn off the visibility of the other layers to make the changes to the ocean elevation mask more obvious.

Jaap Visser
02-19-2014, 07:52 AM
This tutorial helped me really to get things started. Everything is very clear, it also removed the dust off my PS knowledge. Thank you very much for this!

Edit: attached my first tryout

Swampdog
02-20-2014, 11:24 PM
First off, this is an awesome tutorial! Glad it is still alive and easy for us newbie cartographers to find! I'm in the process of building a game using Unity3D and have been drawing a blank in my world map designs until now. What I'm wondering is if anyone following this thread has ever had success converting your maps created with the tutorial to a heightmap to generate 3d terrain.

Thanks Tear for such an awesome, well-written guide!

ThatGuy
02-24-2014, 10:40 AM
This is great, tha`nk you

Elothan
04-16-2014, 04:50 PM
Well, since I have been absent from mapping from a long time now, I felt a need to expand my horizons, so I gave this tut a quick try after dinner and ended up with this: 63228
Its rather small (since I followed the tuts size recomendations, but I really like the style, and after I have experimented a bit more, I might even try to make a "real" map insted of just a quick try with it :)

groovey
04-23-2014, 06:45 AM
Hello Tear (or anyone who can help).

I have a little problem and I can't figure out how to bypass it because I'm not really a pro with Photoshop, just got the basics that I've learned reading tutorials in the forum.

I love Tear's map style, thing is, I got my own sea idea (that I got from a map I love from one of the talented creators of this forum), what I need is just the part to add the land texture, mountains and vegetation, I think I can do rivers myself with a technique I tried before with good results. So really, instead of using the whole style for my map, it'll be a mix of techniques for different things, but in my head projecting how they'd look together they go well together, but that's not an issue.

The issue is I got my world's land masses ready, as an outline (as a stroke), that I can fill in another layer as I wish. Skipping the two first parts of the tutorial plus the coast effects and trying directly to do the elevation part and mountains doesn't work. I add the "base color" layer as it says and then the "elevation" one, but when I try to paint on the elevation layer mask nothing happens.

I suspect it might have to do with how the creation of land masses is done in the beginning of the tutorial, and the Threshold adjustment layer attacked to it? I tried adding one to the layer with my land masses in white and the sea as black (to try to reproduce the result from the first step of the tutorial), but still nothing.

Also, in the tutorial I see that when a Threshold layer adjustment is created it sticks in the same layer that you had selected to do that, but in my case, it creates the Threshold thing in a new layer above the one I had selected, I can't tell if that's how it's supposed to work or what.

I hope I could explain the issue with enough clarity. Does anyone know how to skip directly to steps 3 and 4 and how to set my land masses layer to start working those steps?

I'd really appreciate any help because I'm stuck there till I get the mountains and the terrain, this is in fact the part where I always fail and give up in all my map trials, and this time I'm really so excited about this project (for the first time, I love the land masses I got) I'd feel brokenhearted to abandon it.

Edit: never mind, I figured out what the silly issue was.

-=Orion=-
05-25-2014, 05:45 PM
Help!!!
Great tutorial up until page 3, where you copy merged everything into the Alpha 1 channel. It works, but when I go back into the layers and delete the threshold layer, it just becomes clouds again!

I am using Photoshop CS6 and am new to it, so help would be much appreciated :)

EDIT: I didn't follow the next few steps. All good now!

-=Orion=-
05-27-2014, 05:26 PM
This is my first map that I made with this tutorial!
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It doesn't quite look like the one in the pdf probably because I'm using Photoshop CS6, but I think it still looks pretty cool.

DigitalFable
06-30-2014, 06:26 AM
Going to give this a try today and see what I can come up with using the steps in the tutorial. Thank you for supplying it! :)

TaylorH
07-14-2014, 10:07 PM
Hello. I'm almost finished producing a map using this lovely tutorial, but I have one problem, which is rather strange because everything else has been fine. I'm on the vegetation Grass layer. In CS6 there is no Filter > Texture > Grain, but apparently Grain can be found in Filter Gallery, however, with the Grass layer selected it says that I can't open the Gallery because there's nothing selected. Grass layer is above base colour and below elevation. Any help?

Edit: My apologies. I simply forgot to fill the layer first.

AslanC
07-26-2014, 10:50 PM
So I tried doing this, but with a premade coastline/landscape, that is causing me no end of problems. How do those of us who aren't building whole new maps use this?

Also when I did the Paste Alpha 1 thing, the tutorial says "You screen will be black." mine is white. I get pretty lost after that point.

Help? Anyone?

iceCaller
09-16-2014, 09:17 AM
Checking this out now. This was what I was hoping for when i joined this forum.
Many Thanks!