Thx for your kind words and rep about my challenge entry!
Thanks so much for the rep and kind words! From someone as skilled as you, they mean a lot!
Bogie Yes Layers are one of the most powerful parts of Photoshop as are layer affect. Layer masks are also very powerful. Good luck on the commission.
Thanks for the REP. I did like your advice on fixing the walls, but I am waist deep in a private commission and other projects and just couldn't find time to go back and rework the whole thing. I have got to someday start working with layers so I can fix things quicker. Anyway, thanks again!
thx for the rep on this month challenge!
No problem, lost! You earned it,
Hey there Iostatsea! Who am I to judge your maps, you are a greater cartographer! About your Dark Journey map, reading my fellow cartographers bellow, I agree with everything they say. The map lacked some more details, and the overall blackness isn`t my personal taste (which means nothing, since you can`t please everyone haha), but again your story was great, and I have to say it was a tough challenge (it was the first challenge I couldn`t think of anything to do!). Hope I could help, keep up the good work!
The story was good, but the shell was too dark and the edges too blurry. Map like a monster was a tough task and you've created a good entry, but personally I liked that rough mapping when thinking of a mapping monster (like: wet thingie here, green thingie there etc.).
Your story was original and interesting, but as others seems to have answered already, I think that the background (shell & frame) doesn't work well with the map. It's too dark and too different, making the map elements either sharp, blurry or difficult to read. You got some excellent ideas here, though!
Regarding your map: first, I wouldn't say it bombed at all. Getting a vote or two in these contests pleases me to no end, and you've accomplished that. I'm going to agree with Bogie that the shell itself didn't convince me, it seemed too soft, especially in contrast to the awesome frame and background that you made. The markings on the shell were sharp, but the shell wasn't, so I guess that would be my primary suggestion, more consistency between the elements. Higher resolution would have been great. Also the colours: I think that the carved out parts were fine, but the white and red should have looked more like they were applied over top, like paint. All in all, it was a fine idea!