View Full Version : April Challenge Entry - Boran's Big Travel Map

04-05-2010, 05:40 PM
Thought I'd be the first to throwdown and put up what I've got going...set the bar for the rest of you to raise. :) Spent a few hours doing the terrain and artsiness and will spend some more time doing the detail and flavor. Just a small chunk for now. And of course the first thing I write has a typo in it...naturally.

### Latest WIP ###

04-06-2010, 04:49 AM
I take it that the hand-scrawled bit is just a sketch of the layout and the colored part is how it will eventually look? The finished part definitely looks interesting, very artistic with all those filters its been run through. Nice start.

04-06-2010, 05:19 AM
Nice start, Ascension! Assume I right that the coloured part is the result of a PS artistic filter? Oilpainting?

04-06-2010, 11:29 PM
I don't have an oilpainting filter...had to mix a bunch of things together (diffuse-anistropic, water color, anistropic again, and accented edges). At any rate I was back in the lab tonight. Not sure if I'll keep it but I'll certainly play around more with this on other things. I'm trying to make it look painted to represent the lands that he has been to and the sketched part represents lands he's just heard of or glimpsed from a sailing trip.

### Latest WIP ###

04-07-2010, 12:47 AM
Wow. Repped if possible. Do love the style...please share your filtering technique when done if you don't consider it proprietary.

04-07-2010, 06:23 AM
That is quite possibly the coolest map I've ever seen.

04-07-2010, 08:36 AM
To be totally honest, Ascension, now that I can see the entire continent, I'm not digging it that much. I think the terrain looks way too messy, like the mountains and plains and forests are all jumbled together. I can't quite figure where one piece of topography starts and where it ends. I can't totally dig the concept of the look, though, and it does have the potential to look totally awesome, but I think you need to tone down the filters a fair bit, so that the oil painting look is more subtle and the map more "readable". But do keep working at it, it definitely has the potential.
Just my two cents, anyway.

04-07-2010, 09:23 AM
Wow, this is gorgeous! Really looks like a painting with visible brushstrokes and layers of paint. I hope you're going to keep the outline of the surrounding continents as just linework, really adds to the effect.

04-07-2010, 01:02 PM
I like the push into a new look Ascension. Keep going I am excited to see what you end up with.

04-07-2010, 04:45 PM
Thanks, guys. I'm totally with ya Daelin. I've been searching for a faux painted look (a la Picasso) since before I ever bought Photoshop and I'm finally close. I think I'll try the new techniques on the non-filtered version and see how that comes out because I've totally lost my rivers now. The sketchy continents will stay as is since those places do not need detail for the challenge. The main gist of the new technique is 16 layers of motion-blurred noise-over-clouds (white clouds deleted on half, black deleted on the other half), then hit each layer with the Swirl filter from Eye Candy on very low settings to give a lil twist. For those without Eye Candy you can use the distort-twirl filter at 1 or 2...I think it's twirl, will check later. Then bevel two layers and add drop shadow to simulate texture. I'll do up a mini-tut when done and others can perfect my experiment.

04-07-2010, 06:40 PM
Just wanted to say I agree with Daelin. It looks beautiful, but it's hard for me to make any sense of the terrain. You are definitely onto something though.

04-09-2010, 05:40 PM
wow.... your tinkering is paying off big time again. In awe as you -yet again- develop a new gorgeous style. Nice work so far! cheers!

04-19-2010, 10:28 PM
Not much of an update, been looking at buying a new house so time has been scarce. I'm in the process of coloring in my lil symbols right now and once that's done I'll finish coming up with names for stuff and labelling. The finish work will consist of filling up the margins with diagrams, sketches, brew formulae, drinking songs, n stuff.

### Latest WIP ###

Greason Wolfe
04-19-2010, 10:40 PM
As usual, things are looking gorgeous. The only thing I might suggest is more fade along the edges of the water. The change from water to parchment(?) seems kind of sudden to me. Still, always a pleasure to see your works, both in progress and as finished products.


04-20-2010, 07:23 AM
Not much of an update, been looking at buying a new house so time has been scarce. I'm in the process of coloring in my lil symbols right now and once that's done I'll finish coming up with names for stuff and labelling. The finish work will consist of filling up the margins with diagrams, sketches, brew formulae, drinking songs, n stuff.

I wonder if there's a dwarven version of 'Eskimo Nell' ... probably best not go there.

Map's looking Fab Ascension!

04-20-2010, 12:06 PM

It looks like we are looking down through the clouds and I love that. Maybe you could make the parchment area look more like clouds and make it official? It also reminds me of what the view through a scry glass might be. Either way it's already looking top notch.

I'm glad you stuck with it.

04-20-2010, 02:30 PM
That's looking really great, man. I love how your style is constantly evolving and improving. My favourite part of this is actually your rivers which fit the map very naturally and look wonderful.

Keep it up. :)

04-21-2010, 10:29 PM
Okay, I think I am finally happy with the main image. Coyotemax has said (at least I always give him the credit for it) that if you want it to look hand-drawn then you better hand-draw it...in this case paint. Well, digital paint. So I found a brush that I sort of liked then tweaked it and just grabbed some blues and greens and made some strokes. Now I have to fill up those edges with the above-mentioned stuff...not sure if that will actually happen or not ;) The main thing is to try and keep things simple and repeatable as the image I'm playing with here is only half-size of the original. So if I ever want to go back and do all of this on the big map then it will be easy to do. In theory.

### Latest WIP ###

04-21-2010, 10:52 PM
That looks fabulous.

04-21-2010, 11:34 PM
That really IS looking nice!
And yes, I'm guilty for saying that.. I think it came up when i started working on the Blaeu style mps :)

Sometimes you spend more effort trying to come up with shortcuts than it's worth, and it's better just to fall back on "just draw it" - or in this case "just paint it". i'm glad you did, I **love** the way this looks.

04-22-2010, 02:47 PM
That is looking brilliant!

-Rob A>

04-22-2010, 11:10 PM
The handpainted texture is amazing. I like how you left room for future exploration too...

04-28-2010, 09:47 PM
I think I'm about done. I just have some minor things to look over and adjust, not sure just yet...I've been frantically trying to just get stuff in before time runs out.

### Latest WIP ###

04-29-2010, 12:21 AM
I love the drinking songs. I'ts been a long time since I heard "Dough.. Ray.. Me..." etc :P

This is gonna be one tough vote!

04-29-2010, 12:24 AM
Hmm, I like all the add ons you did with this. I liked your old one though as well and I'm not sure which I like better at this point. This one really looks used and the words all over the place make it almost cluttered, which adds to the feeling of THIS being the map Boran had in his hands during his travels. I think I do miss a little of the color you took away however. It may just be a personal preference. You always have such beautifully colored maps maybe it's a good thing to tone it down now and then. There is a lot on here and you can just scroll around and enjoy the notes and comments as well as all the little glyphs and characters.

Great job I say!

04-29-2010, 10:43 AM
I think I am in agreement with Jaxilon over preffering the previous version. Not that I dislike this one, I think it's great and all the details you've added really bring it to life. But in my eyes your new muted colour scheme has diminished your mountains. There's no longer much shadowing around them so there's no illusion of depth, consequently I'm seeing the bright white of the snowcaps separate to them, like trails of clouds across the map.
Just my opinion of course, most will likely disagree but I loved your mountains when there was more contrast in them.

Oh, and I can hardly make out those beautiful rivers now. :(

04-29-2010, 10:57 AM
well... I say this one is gorgeous! I love the colors (great color-scheme!), details (little mills and stuff), the "sketch/drawing" areas around the main map ... it all fits together perfectly: stunning job Ascension! cheers!

Steel General
04-29-2010, 11:37 AM
Cool stuff here Ascension...I hope I have time to finish my entry

04-29-2010, 11:45 AM
Absolutely stunning. Beautiful in every way.

04-29-2010, 04:32 PM
Color has been the biggest headache to me on this one. I wanted some vibrant but pale colors, more like hints or blushes, but they kept washing out. I wanted the whole thing to look more like faint watercolors on top of a parchment. Since I couldn't get the colors to my liking I just put some tan on top of the whole thing to mute it and be done with it. I've been working these damn colors for three weeks and left myself with 3 days to put in the rest of the stuff. Maybe next time, right?

04-30-2010, 10:33 PM
Extremely impressive! I really like the touch of adding some of the creatures that might be found in particular areas.

05-01-2010, 04:27 PM
that's badass.

09-14-2010, 01:29 AM
How... how did you do the mapping on the parchment side? Was the forests and whatnot handdrawn? IF so, kick-ass (the continent is great as well, and I love how it looks, but I really like the style of the land drawn on the parchment).

09-14-2010, 08:43 PM
I put the digital continents on one layer and then on another layer I drew around the coasts with the tablet then masked out areas on both layers to show/hide what I wanted in order to get the effect.