I would point out that the labels on the map are slanted ... this may be a problem. Most maps tend to have the labels pretty flat, unless dealing with large features, when they can arc a bit. In the tutorials or resources (I think) Ravells posted a very good guide to labelling maps.
Anyhow, if you are planning on publishing the map, the legibility of the labels is something to think about. When I hand-letter maps I tend to use a ruler to get straight lines to write on, then erase them afterwards. If your whole map is going to be in pencil, you might consider labelling on a separate sheet of tracing paper, then combining the two layers digitally.
Thank you everyone for the constructive suggestions. I'm beginning my photoshop work on the map today. Wish me luck
Happy map making...
Hi Geno, coming in a little bit late on this discussion. I don't have much to add that has not already been stated, but I'll just mention the trees/forests again. You currently have quite a few trees sprinkled generously throughout the map. In some places (such as right above the Lost Hills) there are so many trees that it gives the impression of a forest. This would be a fine approach to take. However, it does not sit well with your delineation of other forests, such as the Tangleweave (which are quite dense). I would recommend heading the advice of either Midgardsormr and Schwarzkreuz, and get rid of all the non-forest trees, or alternatively get rid of the dense forest patches and simply make all of your forests appear the same (such as the patch of trees just above the Lost Hills). That would add a bit of continuity to the map.
Thanks, Arsheesh, I appreciate the response. I am definitely taking Midgardsormr and Schwarzkreuz's advice... at least I'm trying to. I'm hoping to have enough work done to post some more tonight, but the last couple days have been pretty crazy busy.
I said it somewhere else on this site, but I'll say it again. I'm amazed at how helpful total strangers will be. Thank you... and thanks to everyone who's chimed in.
Okay... I'm falling asleep (one year old didn't sleep last night. So neither did daddy) and I didn't get near as much done as I had hoped, but here is the first glimpse of my attempts to improve the map and make it publish-ready. I agreed completely on the forest thing, So I'm working on that. Unfortunately the countries involved are rather well and often thickly forested. I think I'm striking a good balance, but I'm concerned for how to pull off the western end of the map. There may need to be some other refinements I'm not thinking of, but hey... 2 hours of sleep will do that to you. Anywhoo... without further ado, Here's Map Day... 5 (I think). Enjoy, critique, or just stare blankly all the above are fine. I go to bed now.
Oh, and it's currently overlayed on the most recent scan of the sketch. Now that I know where stuff is, I'm hand drawing / hand drawing custom brushes... etc... K... I'm rambling now...
Thank you all again. You are very helpful.
Last edited by GenoWrites; 11-12-2012 at 12:50 AM.
This is already much improved! The mountains have quite a bit more character, the forests are far more discernible, the hills look quite nice, and it is no where near as busy as the first map. Looking forward to seeing updates on this.
Hello Most helpful Guild...
So... nine days ago I'd never made a map and I came here searching for help because I'm on a deadline for my novel. Several people have chimed in in helpful ways... So I just wanted to share my very nearly done map. Any critique would be great! Thank you so much for your help.
Two versions: the print version will not be color, but the e-reader version might...
Thanks again for your help.
Last edited by GenoWrites; 11-16-2012 at 12:27 PM.
It is just amazing the amount of progress you have made on this. That is a true and proper fantasy map. Have some rep !!
Even if I am correct, I would still advise you to follow your heart. This whole Cartographers Guild thing, it seems to me, is more about passion and skill and learning new techniques than it is about definitions and rules.
Kingdom Of Shendenflar Campaign Setting (WIP)
Everything I post is free for use and redistribution under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 licence, except where noted otherwise in the thread.