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Thread: WIP stereographic world map

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    Ok.... so I downloaded a script to count the layers on the image... 991 in total. i think that's a record for me. I was thinking of rasterising the type though i don't think that will save much size so its safer to keep the text layers as text for now - I'm still re positioning things and curving them to better-align them with the lines of latitude.

    Anyway, the image was getting a bit sluggish so I decided to crop it in two - the left hemisphere and right one, and I'm concentrating on the left one for now. lots more labels done around the inner sea, though still loads more to go and i started adding political borders (the subtle white lines) not sure if these will stay the same or if ill change them - they'll do for now though

    WIP stereographic world map-world-stereographic-right.jpg

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    o0 Impressive labels work!
    A few of them are overlapping though but I know it's a hell of a job you're doing at the moment.
    About the white lines, they sure need some improvement. I'd advice a bit of smooth on them. Assuming you're drawing them with mouse, one tip would be to draw them with your brush zooming at 200 or 300%, this will blur the brush a very little bit ( but keeping some solid line) and make the lines smoother and less pixellated/hard round brushed

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    Quote Originally Posted by - Max - View Post
    o0 Impressive labels work!
    A few of them are overlapping though but I know it's a hell of a job you're doing at the moment.
    I'm doing my best to stop overlap though given that the age/style of maps I'm basing this on weren't at all bothered with perfection, I'm not bothered. Just getting each text layer to align with the graticules is giving me nightmares! I'm spending ages on this and seem to be getting nowhere (especially with the new labels, which i've made myself take notes of for future reference...

    About the white lines, they sure need some improvement. I'd advice a bit of smooth on them. Assuming you're drawing them with mouse, one tip would be to draw them with your brush zooming at 200 or 300%, this will blur the brush a very little bit ( but keeping some solid line) and make the lines smoother and less pixellated/hard round brushed
    I'm actually using a wacom, though the lines weren't very hard. i sharpened the edges, smoothed them a bit and added a very subtle stroke to them (though note the whiteness got a bit smudged as part of the conversion.compression to jpg - its much crisper in the full-size psd). They're looking better for now, though I'm still not 100% happy with them for now. I'm scouring old-school maps for inspiration though most of them are dashed lines with haphazard coloured lines stroked over them, not too sure i like that very much and also I think it's pretty pointless in many regions due to the number of labels obscuring the borders (which will certainly be beneath the labels)

    This is today's progress with texture and water added (as i left it out last update. I'm getting close to getting a quarter of the western hemisphere done, and that's the easy part (just copying labels from other maps I've made) as the rest of the map is mostly terra incognita, so progress will slow as i try to come up with sounds/simple language systems I can use to name the various 'alien' regions and cultures.

    I'm also still spitballing ideas for the map borders, other than the constellations. i'm thinking about important histories, religious tables (like some kaballah/chakra drawings), some symbolism stuff (golden ratios, numerology and other things pertinent to the world) and who knows what else!

    WIP stereographic world map-world-stereographic-lft.jpg

    also, i think ill stop with the pic updates for now, at least until the time comes for me to add some new stuff.
    Last edited by vorropohaiah; 03-01-2013 at 02:52 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by vorropohaiah View Post
    I'm scouring old-school maps for inspiration though most of them are dashed lines with haphazard coloured lines stroked over them, not too sure i like that very much and also I think it's pretty pointless in many regions due to the number of labels obscuring the borders (which will certainly be beneath the labels)
    I wasn't a great fan too of those stroked coloured lines on borders but I may change my mind seeing how Diamond did some on his last finished map

    Quote Originally Posted by vorropohaiah View Post
    I'm also still spitballing ideas for the map borders, other than the constellations. i'm thinking about important histories, religious tables (like some kaballah/chakra drawings), some symbolism stuff (golden ratios, numerology and other things pertinent to the world) and who knows what else!
    I like the idea of religious tables. very interesting and not often seen.

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    The labeling has some problems. If you are going to cram things in that tight, you need to do so VERY carefully. You should try to avoid colliding with other lines like the graticule and coastline, and especially with other labels. If you adjust the kerning manually, you can slip lines through gaps between the letters. If all else fails, you can put a gap in the other line to make the label easier to read. In a lot of cases it's quite hard to figure out what the labels are representing, and some are difficult to even read.

    Adjusting overall letter spacing of a label is also something to consider, especially for labels representing areas. It would particularly help those all caps labels.

    Those white lines are very artificial looking. Think about the notional process behind this map being made. Personally, I like to do all the line work together, as a "drawing/printing" phase, and then add coloured highlights afterwards. That helps to avoid problems like this.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hai-Etlik View Post
    The labeling has some problems. If you are going to cram things in that tight, you need to do so VERY carefully. You should try to avoid colliding with other lines like the graticule and coastline, and especially with other labels. If you adjust the kerning manually, you can slip lines through gaps between the letters. If all else fails, you can put a gap in the other line to make the label easier to read. In a lot of cases it's quite hard to figure out what the labels are representing, and some are difficult to even read.
    Adjusting overall letter spacing of a label is also something to consider, especially for labels representing areas. It would particularly help those all caps labels.
    I was actually thinking of reducing the size of the nations (the caps labels), as well as adding partial masking the areas of the graticules with text over them, rather than changing the kerning of on the text, though i might do that. i know that coastal regions are typically depicted in the water at an angle, though given the coastline shape I wasnt able to, plus i'm not too bothered of precision - 16th-17th century world maps aren't known for the precision of their text:

    WIP stereographic world map-capture.png
    many labels on that snip overlap the coastline and touch each other in places, though I do see what you mean now about the longitudinal graticules - none of them really cross them and the larger nation labels only just skim them.

    Those white lines are very artificial looking. Think about the notional process behind this map being made. Personally, I like to do all the line work together, as a "drawing/printing" phase, and then add coloured highlights afterwards. That helps to avoid problems like this.
    very true about the white lines, as I said, I'm not too happy about them at the moment, and theyre more placeholders for now than anything else. I might try the dashed/stroked coloured line common in the period, though not too sure ill go for it as most of it will be obscured by the text anyway. Though given my lack of experience in illustrator (which i rally want to start using) i'm still stumbling as to the best way to do this in PS - freehand pen tool/stroke/smooth is what comes to mind though any suggestions are welcome

    thanks for the comments

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    I've slowly been going over all my maps and copying labels onto this monster I'm progressing at a snail's pace, and in the past few days have had 3 PS crashes, which have really set me back as well as dampened my enthusiasm, though I'm persevering.

    I also need a new PC as this poor laptop is giving me no end of grief...

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    Ouch, sorry to hear your computer troubles I know how you feel I really need a stuff upgrade aswell.

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    Maybe I could help your motivation by adoring the map?
    I really love the form of the continents. I'm used to praise the finished map of the gallery showing the Korachan Empire, so I'm quite elated to see work going on.

    I think it's really OK, if you leave rivers and mountains out as it's a political map. I like to see that I'm not alone at defining hundreds of cities and so on. (my current WIP has 270 major cities and capitals, still growing)
    It's amazing how much time you spend to small details as the astronomical map.

    Go on and show us the beauty of this world, no tired laptop or crashing PS could stop you!
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