Converting a colour map into an outline?
I GM in the Hyborean age. We're currently using this map:
I've printed it out but I have a problem recording the party's travels on it. If I print it out in either B&W or colour, then I have a hard time making legible marks on it - practically everything is hard to see against the background.
My best solution so far is a silver gel pen, but even that's tricky. I tried to trace it, but there's a good deal of detail I'd like to retain - basically I'd like to discard the coloured gradiants and render it as a simple "outline map", like this: Example
Retaining the city names and whatnot would be nice, but secondary.
Is there a photoshop script or some other tool I could use? Ideally I'd prefer having to hand draw (trace) or commission someone (the map doesn't belong to me, I do not think it would be right to pay someone to copy it) unless I really have to.
Since the resolution is kinda low, I'd think tracing would be your best option. What I'd do is re-size the image you have to what you need (if you're going to print it at a certain size, for instance), turn down the opacity a bit so you can see what you're doing better, then create a new layer and trace the parts you want to keep. You could do this without a computer, too, if you prefer, or if you don't have a drawing tablet to make things smoother. Just re-size the original to what you want, print it, place a clean sheet of paper over it and put some sort of light-source behind, trace, and scan back onto the computer if necessary.
You might be able to threshold it, in a photoshop or GIMP program. That way you'd get a black-and white and could adjust the slider to remove extraneous details.
In other news, OH GOD THE RIVER VIOLATIONS!