Help making good map labels.
I've been writing an alternate history for some months and one thing that I have continued to struggle with is how to label the maps. Making the maps themselves are not too tough but I struggle labeling them properly. No matter what I do I can't shake the feeling that the map labels are obviously added in photoshop. I try various fonts but the main issue is how to make it look like "ink on paper" so to speak.
Uploaded below is a small inset from the map I made to show what I am trying to label. Any help would be appreciated.
I believe that Gidde wrote something about ink-bleeding in the tutorial named.....eh... mapping for the artistical challenged... or some such
Yeah! Giddes tutorial is here
The gist of it is make three copies of the "ink" then leave your original alone. "ink" copy gets mode set to "Grain Merge", Opacity to 50%. Then 5px gaussian blur and a Spread (Filter Noise → → Spread) of 3px. "Ink" copy#1 layer mode to Grain Merge, and the opacity to 55%. Apply a 5px spread and then a 2px gaussian blur. And "Ink" copy #2 layer mode to multiply and the opacity to 64%. (liberally copied and pasted from the tutorial).
Hope that helps.
I think he's using Photoshop, but the basic idea should be the same for both programs, even if the menus aren't quite the same.
I use an outer glow, drop shadow and on a separate layer use some noise dots (low opacity). I guess if you wanted it to look like an old printing then you could use the grain filters on the text. When I want to make it look hand-lettered I use a mask on the text and then use the pixellate filter and blur.
If the radiance of a thousand suns was to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One...I am become Death, the Shatterer of worlds.
-J. Robert Oppenheimer (father of the atom bomb) alluding to The Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 11, Verse 32)
My Maps ~ My Brushes ~ My Tutorials ~ My Challenge Maps
The biggest problem with translating that into PS is that PS doesn't have Grain Merge available as an option. Multiply or Burn should do the trick though.
Thanks to all for the suggestions.
Originally Posted by Ascension
Yes, I'm struggling with the appropriate use of pixelation and noise--and that Gidde's tutorial doesn't translate awesomely to photoshop tremendously easily when it comes to the text parts. (BTW though, it's a great one for making those all-ink maps and I intend to use it as much as I can for that purpose...)
Originally Posted by Gidde
For instance, look at the lettering in the image below. The problem is that the states are color coded in my map and so sometimes dark text is hard to read.
Hmm, honestly it doesn't look bad to me. Even France shows up just fine on my screen.
An outer glow on the text against a dark background would fix any concerns you have there.