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Thread: still trying FT + Photoshop

  1. #1
      feanaaro is offline
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    Default still trying FT + Photoshop

    This is (an incomplete depiction of) another region of my world. I am still endlessly trying to mix Fractal Terrain generated geography with Photoshop, mostly using (or trying to) the techniques of Pasis's wonderful tutorial.
    What do you think of this try?

    still trying FT + Photoshop-dragonbay.png
    Vellum likes this.

  2. #2
      Vellum is offline
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    Hey this is looking really nice so far!! Good job. Where you planning on taking this?

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      Thrum is offline
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    I think this looks fantastic! Seriously. Your description made it sound like you weren't terribly happy with it, but this looks great. Very nice texture work and I really dig the mountains and rivers.

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      feanaaro is offline
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    Thanks for your words. I am never happy, but I guess it is a common phenomenon. It's ironic since I started this mixing of FT and PS with the idea of having a quick method to map an entire world; but irony also is common in this trade.
    Anyway, here there is a different version, less and differently textured, plus some additional rivers, forests and details. Also, bigger size. Let me know.

    still trying FT + Photoshop-dragonbay.jpg

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      feanaaro is offline
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    This is the actual region I want to map. It had its own thread, but I didn't mind to revive it since it is quite old and all these are still just tries.

    still trying FT + Photoshop-kelerion-valley.jpg

    Also, a size comparison (for an high and a low estimate of the length of a league). I was thinking that perhaps the mountain ranges produced by fractal terrains might be considered a bit out of proportion. Although, it is also true that our real world look very boring in maps, except from a few particularly varied areas.

    still trying FT + Photoshop-size-comparison.jpg

    EDIT: for some reason, exporting from photoshop to .jpg (but the same happens with .png) flattened my mountains a lot, but the same did not happen whith the other region, although as far as I know I used the same settings. Anyone has an idea of why this might be? The only difference that comes to my mind is that the second file is larger (8000 px wide instead of 5000)
    Re-EDIT: this is how it looks from a screenshot within photoshop
    still trying FT + Photoshop-senza-titolo.png
    Last edited by feanaaro; 12-26-2012 at 11:03 AM.

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    Hey I tried finding Pasis's tutorial on the forums, could you provide a link or the title? I like how this looks and want to use the same settings to create my world.

    I also felt the same about the mountains proportions, but it gives your maps kind of a grandiose thing making me visualize your world to be VAST and huge. The proportions could also be fixed by enlarging some of the colonies (just my 2 cents) but I feel your maps work very well and would err on leaving them as they are.

    Any direction you could provide on how to start something similiar to these would be appreciated. I have a world set up in PS that I am working on (an overview if you will) but I'd love to do it region by region with highly detailed areas like yours.
    Last edited by The Full Monty; 12-31-2012 at 12:04 AM.

  7. #7
      feanaaro is offline
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    Pasis's tutorial (the one amongst many I was referring to) is here
    That will not give the same results I have here however. In fact, I am completely unable to draw anything, even a bump map, and everything I have there comes from Fractal Terrains. What I did is creating and somewhat editing the world in fractal terrains, then exporting in bmp different images of it to be tinkered in photoshop.
    The process I used for these last (incomplete) maps is as follow:
    – start from FT, center on the region you want to map, export the following maps as bmp files (8000 px wide because is the highest I could manage without crashing FT)
    • bump map (or height map set from black to white, the result is slightly different for some reason)
    • regular view with all the land white and normal water and rivers (I prefer relatively dark shades of blue, as you can see)
    • terrain-climate view
    – then import everything in photoshop as different layers
    • create three layers for mountains (hills-mountains-peaks) following Pasis and tinkering a little bit with the values of bevel/emboss until you get what you want
    •*the three layers are fully filled in white and then a mask based on the bumpmap is applied. For the highest layer I use the regular bump map, for the middle one I use the same with +100 brightness, for the lower one the same with +150 brightness and -50 contrast. In this way the lower levels are wider and gentler, as they should be, while the peaks are more defined
    • textures may or may not be added to the mountain layers, I mostly used pasis's suggestions once again. If no texture is used, of course the layers should be set to multiply
    •*then the image-climate map from FT is used, there is a first layer with some uniform texture to give some basic variation to the map, on top of that the image-climate layer set to "colour" or "hue" with an opacity of 75-90%. Some gaussian blur is applied to the colours layer to smooth the stark transitions produced by FT. Additional layers of colour and textures may be applied to characterise some peculiar terrain type.
    •*in the water-river layer the rivers are retraced by hand to give them a better look (they are 1px straight lines in FT), a texture is added (multiply, 50% opacity) plus some inner glow with 50-75% noise and a slight bevel
    •*the layer are ordered in this way: first the basic+terrain colours, then the mountains and on top of everything the water. If you want the water to be visually affected by elevation it should be under the mountains, but that works only if the mountains are set to multiply, without textures (or at least I haven't found another way)
    • All the other elements, forests, cities, fields etc., are simple and they also are more or less lifted from Pasis's tutorial.

    As for the look of the mountains, I see that they would look entirely plausible if we were thinking of the himalaya or some other massive and compact mountain chain, but since I am from a small country with a lot of ups and downs some large swaths of the map looks uninteresting to me. I am trying to add some elevation to the bump map by hand (for exapmle in the area around the mouth of the great river, where the 11 free cities are), but until now without success.

    I also still have the incomprehensible problem that when I export from the last map the mountains look flattened and I still don't understand why.
    The Full Monty likes this.

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    thank you so much. I'm just working on a world map I made and going to see if I can basically skip the FT part and use sections/regions from the map I made in PS in the same manner. I just really like the style, colours, forests, and mountains so hopefully my output will be similiar. I really appreciate it and gave you some rep.

  9. #9
      feanaaro is offline
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    Pasis is to be thanked. The only thing that I did was adding FT in the technique.

  10. #10
      Veldehar is offline
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    Excellent work no matter who you want to thank! Like that alot.
    Upon the Creation of the World the First Dragons cast their seed in the light of a Sun and a Thousand Suns, beneath the Moon and a Thousand Moons, on a World and a Thousand Worlds.

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