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Thread: Which do you prefer?

  1. #1
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Post Which do you prefer?

    So, I am playing around with GIMP in creating mountains. I have three styles which are variations of the same underlying technique. Primarily, I am interested in the feed back about the actual mountain ridges, though any comments about the "hilly" border, river, lake, or forests are welcome also.

    I appreciate anyone who comments on the style they prefer.
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      Talroth is offline
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    Your first and second ones show promise, but your choice of colour scheme leaves a lot to be desired.

    They might look better if you find a better way to blend them, I think the yellow blending point is throwing everything off and making it look horrible when it isn't that bad.

    Try reducing the Yellow sections of the first one, and for the second one, it might look good if redone in gray.

  3. #3
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Thanks Talroth. To be honest, I started with a blank transparant layer and went with the mountian texture from there. I am most concerned with the mountain texture. I just threw the forests, rivers, etc in to make it look more than just a bunch of mountains. The current map is all the exact same with 3 layers turned on or off for the actual texture of the mountians.

    1 is the bottom layer alone
    2 is the a higher layer alone
    3 is a combination of 1 over 2 (overlay mode) in an attempt to get more of the valleys texture.
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    Post Actually...

    Actually, none of these work for me. They all look like a shape with a tiled image of rough terrain on them - they don't look like mountain ranges.

    What I mean is, they lack a ridgeline or some other feature to make them more believeable as mountains.

    To help explain what I mean, I created this simple mountain range with a distinct ridgeline. I did not create this in GIMP, rather I used Xara Xtreme 4.0, but you should be able to create something like this in GIMP.

    Sample mountain ridgeline...

    You need something more than just a tiled texture fill.
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      RobA is offline
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    GP raised a good point..no idea what the scale is.

    Are these single ranges (like GP posits with the provided example) or are these mountain "fields" like this sat shot of the rockies (note the scale):

    Which do you prefer?-2008-05-27_005136.png

    -Rob A>

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    Post Even as a mountain field, there's a pattern

    Even as a mountain "field" such as the Rockies or Himalayas, there is still a natural geographic pattern, flow and direction - even with mountain ranges back to back.

    I can agree that some of the Rockies terrain reflect the random undulations of mountains in Jfrazierjr's sample, still there are distinct ranges with ridgelines in RobA's sample map.

    I'm not trying to criticize so much as to give example of what I feel your mountains need to be more convincing, that's all.
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      DanChops is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfrazierjr View Post
    So, I am playing around with GIMP in creating mountains. I have three styles which are variations of the same underlying technique. Primarily, I am interested in the feed back about the actual mountain ridges, though any comments about the "hilly" border, river, lake, or forests are welcome also.

    I appreciate anyone who comments on the style they prefer.
    I'm assuming that your scale is more in line with the image posted by Rob.

    I prefer the third one for mountains, but the first one shows a ton of promise for canyons. How much control do you have over the texture? Can you set up the ridges whereever you like, or is a completely random thing? Care to share your techniques?

  8. #8
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gamerprinter View Post
    Actually, none of these work for me. They all look like a shape with a tiled image of rough terrain on them - they don't look like mountain ranges.

    What I mean is, they lack a ridgeline or some other feature to make them more believeable as mountains.
    Heh... thats why I am playing around. The first screen shot is a rather simplistic attempt at creating a somewhat a of ridge line on multiple mountain ranges from a fairly high altitude WHILE still conveying the intent that they are still mountains. The scale is somewhat less than earth satellite and higher than standard aerial photography. The intent is to somewhat stylistically depict a range of mountains of some amorphous general shape. Just as a reference, let's say this map is 600 miles wide, but my goal is to create mountains that look like they may be mountains from a continent scale without spending hours and hours doing so. At this point, I am limiting myself to learning GIMP, but would be willing to use any software as long as it's free for future endeavors.

    This is one of the issues with large scale mapping in between artistic (hand draw, orthogonal type) and satellite styles. Looking at satellite images of several continents, you really, truly cannot know where mountains lay except for the snow covered peaks unless you actually know where they are, so I am trying to find something in between to signify to the viewer that "hey, these are where the mountains are and there are lots of mountains in this range". Based on the presumed scale of this particular map, there "should" be forest colors visible, but again I just wanted more of the general idea that there were mountains here as the main thought.

    Your comments AND criticisms are both welcome. As I said, I am just playing around trying to come up with something quick and easy that fits this criteria and of course, would be more than willing to try something else if someone has suggestions while using GIMP.

    For the record, I tend to prefer #1 as this to me gives the illusion of ridge lines AND semi random peak/valley formations.

    Oh, and how do the rivers look? I just got a tablet and started playing with it yesterday and it's taking some getting used to.

    Joe
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  9. #9
    Guild Journeyer Facebook Connected rpgmapmaker's Avatar
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    Nice comments so far... I am always getting great information by reading threads like this.

    I think the first one is the best of the three but like others have said non are quite there yet... depending on the look you are going for.

    Take a look at the nice rivers you made and then back at the mountains... try to imagine where and how the water is flowing into them from the mountains and adjust the "range" to look more like they all have the "mission" of making the rivers and I think that will help give them a more eroded natural look.

    It is mostly that the pattern of the range (as is) would lead more to there being many small lakes as you have it now... IMO

    -Chris
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      Karro is offline
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    I also prefer the first version, though I like Gameprinter's mountains better. Though those may not really reflect what mountains look like from satellite or high-altitude photography, but artistically, I feel like they get the idea across better. I guess, however, that they aren't really useable to show a series of ridgelines over a wide-ranging geographic region.

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