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Thread: A Map of Ilaros

  1. #11
      pyrandon is offline
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    Yes, as ravs says, you can click on the layer of, say, the forests, and then go to Image>Adjustments. Use Hue/Saturation, Brightness/Contrast, or Levels to play with those colors. (You can also use Curves if you feel like playing a lot; it's a beast to figure out, for me at least). If you don't want to do an entire layer, you can also surround things with the marquee tool to only mess with certain sections: surround whatever you wish, then Image>Adjustments.

    Also remember that if you Layer>New Adjustment Layer you can also you can also do these things in a "non-destructive" manner--meaning the original maps' colors are in tact, with the effect applied over top. This is a nice safety net to use.

    Make sure to keep us posted with posts!
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  2. #12
    Guild Master Gracious Donor Midgardsormr's Avatar
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    I like the high-altitude lakes. That's a feature I've not seen on many maps yet.

    A suggestion to help your features blend together better: Try feathering the edges a bit. I don't know where that function is found in Photoshop; I haven't used it very much, but I used to use it with great frequency in Corel PhotoPaint. It will keep the peaks and ridges crisp but blend the lowlands into the flats.

    Overall, I like your awareness of different biomes--I also noted the glaciers in the south. Good job!
    Bryan Ray, visual effects artist
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  3. #13
      Sular is offline
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    Well, I've done some of the tweaking that needed to be done, although I still have quite a bit more to go. The hills have been blurred and there has been some general desaturation of color. However, I've got a scale and the beginnings of a key which hopefully will make the map a bit clearer.

    --

    Midgarsormr, I'll look for an edge feathering tool for the mountains. From the sound of things, that might just do the trick.

    As to the high altitude lakes, I'm glad that they show up well enough to be noticed. I like them as well, although they began life as the lazy man's way of filling in unsightly gaps in the mountains.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails A Map of Ilaros-new-ilaros-map-scale.jpg  
    Last edited by Sular; 12-17-2007 at 06:52 PM. Reason: you know, it helps to put of the right map

  4. #14
      GlennZilla is offline
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    Not to threadjack, but I find that I always use an adjustment layer. I like being able to trash the experiement without going back to square one, or even reverting to a previous saved copy.

    As for the Curves dialog it's mostly based around how the line is shaped and interacts with three points along the line, Black, White and Middle Gray. Think of it as a graph of how you want to adjust the contrast and brightness of the image.

    Just want to make it brighter? Simply click the middle of the line (middle gray) and drag it higher in the "graph". This will cause a shift to make more shades the lighter side of middle gray. Similarly you can cause curves in the line to force the shades near the ends to compress, making more white or black areas, thus increasing the contrast between the two.

    Then again after 3 years as a graphic designer, I still manipulate the curves dialog box in my dreams.

  5. #15
      RobA is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by GlennZilla View Post
    Then again after 3 years as a graphic designer, I still manipulate the curves dialog box in my dreams.
    GlenZilla is bang on. Anything you can do with brightness, contrast, and gamma corrections you can do with curves.....and then a whole lot more. The curves tool is definitely a worthwhile tool to master.

    -Rob A>

  6. #16
      aeronox is offline
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    To improve the 'contrast' between mountains and land (and mountains and ice):

    1) Decrease layer opacity to around 80%
    2) Use a blurry eraser and dab at the edges

    To make your mountains less 'plastic', give it texture. Add a Layer Style->Pattern overlay (on darken), or modify your Bevel/Emboss to include Texture.

    I don't like your new map - it lacks colour! Just add a little yellow/orange to the desert, some green/yellow to the trees. Make your rivers a darker colour so they don't get lost.

    But the biggest tip is: Opacity, opacity, opacity. Let no overlay be absolute 100%.

  7. #17
      Sular is offline
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    I think I have finally got the mountains looking a bit for acceptable. I took aeronox's advice and added a texture to them which seemed to prevent them from going wonky when I applied the blur to them. I've also reduced the muting of the color so its still a little bright, but I think I can live with the current incarnation for a while.

    I should probably attempt to finish the political map at some point as well.

    Thanks again for all the comments and the like. I'll be working on numerous other maps, so I am sure more will appear for comment.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails A Map of Ilaros-new-ilaros-map-copy.jpg  

  8. #18
      su_liam is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sular View Post
    As to the high altitude lakes, I'm glad that they show up well enough to be noticed. I like them as well, although they began life as the lazy man's way of filling in unsightly gaps in the mountains.
    Well, in real life, lakes are God's way to fill in unsightly gaps in mountains.

  9. #19
      nikonguy is offline
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    Looking good, the mountains and color are starting to come together in a more cohesive manner. As for the suggestion that many have been making about working with adjustment layers, I don't think that can be stressed enough. It makes things really easy to fix later.

    On a side note, love the comment about lakes being gods way of filling in gaps in mountains! It reminds me of a comment Ansel Adams once made about working in the dark room, "Burning and Dodging are my way of fixing God's mistakes in exposure!"
    Maps are fun, but photos feed me.

  10. #20
      su_liam is offline
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    It kind of reminded me of Greece when I first saw it(specifically the Pelleponesian Peninsula), but now that I look at that chunk of the Great Frozen South, I realize it is more like Cape Horn, only more so. Dangerous storms there I imagine. Seafaring could be exciting.

    When I wrote my previous message, I considered replacing, "God," with, "Nature," or some such to avoid offending anybody(I feel as if I've been annoying a lot of people lately), but it lost it's punch. Besides, if brilliant folks like Einstein and, now I know, Adams can say God, why not me?

    EDIT: One thing I wanted to add. There's a nice little java-based gis app called landserf that does things like finding pits(which, except in deserts, turn into lakes) channels and ridges and building slope maps. It's somewhat technical, but, even I, a rank novice, find great utility in using it to build masks for photoshop operations. Just apropos of filling holes with lakes.
    Last edited by su_liam; 12-18-2007 at 11:43 AM.

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