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Thread: World of Exodus - WiP commission map

  1. #1
      mearrin69 is offline
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    Wip World of Exodus - WiP commission map

    Hi all,
    I'm working on my first commission map and asked the client for permission to post the WiP here for feedback from you helpful folks. The client is Louis Porter Jr. Design (link) and the map is a regional map for that company's NeoExodus (link) product line. It seems to be an interesting world (from the one 27-page PDF history I've read) with some pretty complex politics going on (and a lot of war) - perfect for guys and girls with swords and spells.

    When completed, the map will be 17"x11" (landscape). I was given a rough map showing major political bodies (attached), which I imported into CS4 and traced over with the pencil to create the land outlines.

    I wanted random coastlines so I tried OldGuy's cool technique (link) but wasn't 100% happy with the results I was getting (the smooth original shape of the coastline was still pretty visible) so I started over and used brush dynamics and decreasing sized brushes to randomize the coastline a bit. After that I ran OldGuy's technique again (with one change) and it worked very well - the change was that I created a "stop" by shrinking down the landmass shapes and pasting that over the "noised up" layer so that I could really eat away at the coast...but not go too far into the interior. Don't know if that makes *any* sense at all but I could probably post a step-by-step if anyone's interested. I've posted snapshots of the drawn coastline, the roughened up version, the post-OldGuy technique version, and then the final version with a stroke (which will very likely not look that way in the final).

    The ocean's pretty standard I guess: clouds followed by burn/dodge for a little shaping and then a continental shelf layer and some blending down. Will do more with the surface later but I was just trying to get it looking good quickly.

    After that I drew the political borders (colored the same as the countries in the "turnover" for now), dumped on a texture, and added some "dressing" from the product line (snagged from a PDF so the quality's maybe not that great but it's temporary to get a feel. I'm out of picture space in this post so I'll post the current version and a zoom-in in the next one.
    M
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails World of Exodus - WiP commission map-exodus-turnover.png   World of Exodus - WiP commission map-coast-1.png   World of Exodus - WiP commission map-coast-2.png   World of Exodus - WiP commission map-coast-3.png   World of Exodus - WiP commission map-coast-4.png  


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      mearrin69 is offline
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    Okay, here is the current view. Still to come are climates, terrain features, cities, etc. I actually don't have a great deal to go on here and have been given some freedom to create so we'll see how that goes.

    There are some odd climactic features that I have to stick with: Cordel is desert, Nas is icy plains, and Bal is jungle. Maybe not likely in the real world but, hey, it's fantasy. Other features I'm aware of is that Ablis is a volcanically blasted wasteland and that Sametia, Koryth, and Unthara are basically wilderness (some cities/ruins). I actually don't know anything about Gavea (don't remember it mentioned in the PDF but that probably means I should check it again).

    So, not much to critique yet but please feel free to give suggestions and pointers!
    M
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails World of Exodus - WiP commission map-exodus-100%25-zoom.png   World of Exodus - WiP commission map-exodus-wip.png  

  3. #3
    Community Leader Facebook Connected Steel General's Avatar
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    Looking pretty good so far Mearrin. I think you could maybe 'tone down' the borders a bit (unless the client wants them that way).
    My Finished Maps | My Challenge Maps | Ghoraja Juun, my largely stagnated campaign setting.

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      mearrin69 is offline
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    Thanks! Yar. They're a little bold. Stolen straight from the product PDF, though, so it's "in style" with the setting. The guy's a graphic designer so I imagine he'll apply his own treatment when it's done...this was just to give me a feel as my normal tendancy would be toward more muted colors.
    M

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      Ascension is offline
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    Nation borders that hug the coastline always sort of bug me, could just be me, though. It's the vivid colors that kinda mess things up. I would suggest erasing the borders along the coast as they aren't really needed there anyways. But you say, "what about the islands?" They have names on them so that's good enough. But if you wanted to have some sort of color denomination then I'd replace the red stroke around the letters for each country and give them their own color stroke. The mainland countries have their inland border plus the color stroke and the islands have a color stroke...should be good enough.
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      Slylok is offline
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    Hello Mearrin,

    I like your technique for developing the coastline. It looks great and im sure i will use it for future maps.

    Off subject question: How much does a customer pay for a map like this? What goes into the pricing scheme for commission maps? is it the size, the complexity, style? sorry if this is a bit bold, but im curious as to how it works. id love to one day get paid for this type of stuff.

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      mearrin69 is offline
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    @Ascension: I think I agree with you on the borders. It's kind of a temporary thing that I can take care of later...each is a country-shaped layer with 0% fill and a stroke. At some point I'll flatten them and erase out the parts I don't need. Note that there is also a border along the top and bottom where the shape ends, which I also plan to remove. I'm actually not sure that the colors need to be there, and probably not so brightly even if. Waiting to hear back on that.

    @Slylok: Not a lot, really. Let's just say I won't be quitting my day job soon. I'm mainly doing this because it was an unexpected offer and I wanted to give it a try to see where it goes.

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      tilt is offline
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    Mearrin - looking good.. and congrats on the comm ... think I said that before but that can't be said to much ... I'm also not a fan of colored borders along the coasts... I like my borders where countries clash

    slylok - there's been a couple of threads lately on HOW you get commisions and HOW you evaluate your price sceme
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      mearrin69 is offline
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    *animate thread*
    BTW, the client for this dropped off the radar for quite a while but I pinged him and he resurfaced so I guess it's back on. Will be posting an update tonight but wanted to post to put this back on my stack.
    M

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      mearrin69 is offline
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    I've really been waffling on this. The publisher really hasn't given me any style guidance (seems pretty open) so I'm fishing about trying to find something that looks good. I've abandoned the branch with the comic-book-style (which seemed appropriate given some of the setting's imagery) and am doing something slightly more realistic - starting with Ascension's atlas-style tutorial (thanks, Ascension). Here's the basics of that, with no "climate gradient".

    My next step is to try to take this a little away from the atlas style and a little more toward something more like what I had before. A merger of styles if at all possible. We'll see. In any case, this is all I'm going to do on it tonight so...C&C welcome, if you see any issues feel free to point them out.

    Oh, and, I've decided that I'm going to donate my fee for this map to the Guild (it's only $100, so don't get *too* excited).
    M
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails World of Exodus - WiP commission map-exodus-new.jpg  

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