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Thread: Map of the Twin Kingdoms of Aran and Ilan - Handdrawn

  1. #151
      Raptori is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by kirkspencer View Post
    fwiw I prefer not using 'because magic' for most basic stuff. I include the line because, well the thing is that if you presume magic exists for your world it will have an impact. It's a corollary of magic and sufficiently advanced technology being indistinguishable. You gave a couple of cases. Less world-changing, farmers would kill for someone who could predict the weather for the next few days, and if they can bring or stop the rains? And so on and so forth. But I digress.

    Bottom line I have no personal problem in fantasy worlds of whatever the designer wants. If he's going for 'realistic' then it depends on a lot of elements of which magic is neither most nor least significant. And even there, the 'experts' disagree what the maximum should be. (70 or 140 at England's peak pre-plague?)

    Oh yeah, I didn't get the impression you thought it was the best option (or even necessarily a good one) - you did put it in brackets after some more "natural" possibilities after all!

    Powerful magic would definitely have some effect on the world, I was just trying to say that I dislike it when the only effect is limited to a certain thing, without any reference to the consequences, because when that happens it usually breaks the illusion for me. When the consequences are included, like my example above, it makes the created world fascinating, and can really connect the fantastic aspects to how they would really affect things.
    Last edited by Raptori; 03-24-2014 at 04:16 PM.

  2. #152
      jbgibson is offline
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    As far as broadening the kerning on mountain range labels - one reason to do so is so the label 'claims' all the applicable territory. Same principle as for a river - if it's potentially unclear past a branch what name applies, one either repeats the right one, or spreads out the name till it adjoins both possible portions. I think that's why the best practice for area labels too is to stretch across the whole width of a territory or object, where possible.

    When spacing out letters looks too disjointed, one could consider also putting even more space between words. And if even that lets a reader lose track of what's being said, one could switch mountain labeling (unfortunately - all mountain range labeling) to a slightly different font. You're using that nice centered-small-caps variant for multiple extents - territory, bodies of water, AND ranges. Maybe for the ranges you could use an extended font instead. If there isn't one in the font face you've chosen, you could make the tough choice to stretch the one you've got - I know meddling with character proportions is chancy, but the end result might justify it, IF the font is amenable to lengthwise stretching. Incidentally, since stretching larger can lose resolution, maybe the actual process would be to lay out a really big point size and then scrunch it a bit vertically.

    I think the kerned versions you show are fine. I kind of expect to do a little hunting to track down long labels. As for the rest of the map - it's made out of Awesome, bolted together with Amazing, and polished with Wonderful. Easily one of the maps I would most like to pore over ... and I have :-).

    And thanks to both Raptori and Caenwyr for the demographic resources - great stuff, that!

  3. #153
      Caenwyr is offline
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    Hi all!

    I know I've said this before, but... I think this might be it! Done some further tweaking on tons of little details, shifted a few borders for them to fit better with the story (notably the southeastern corner of Conwr) or just plain look better. Which means I also had to adapt the areas in the sidebar. Luckily they didn't change enough for their population densities to change drastically, so I just left their populations as they were. I also added some more sea labels, threw in a handful extra cities and toyed a bit with the mountain labels. While they might still not be perfect, I think it's safe to say they're pretty much as good as I'll get them. So fully aware of their lasting imperfection, I would nevertheless like to thank you all for your advice, guys! I learned a lot!

    On top of all that I also added some marches down by the southernmost lake in Safryn, and around the bunch of little lakes in the south of the Annor principality. I'm not sure if those make the map better or worse. So I guess this is still in all its aspects a WIP .


    Map of the Twin Kingdoms of Aran and Ilan - Handdrawn-awi_handdrawn_final.jpg

    Let me know what you think!
    - Max -, Lingon, Raptori and 3 others like this.
    Come pay me a visit on my blog!

  4. #154
      Caenwyr is offline
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    Hi people!

    After a few last tweaks (addition of river names e.g.) I published the map in the Finished section: link. Thanks for all your help over the last 3 months!

    C
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  5. #155
      Caenwyr is offline
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    Default Re: Map of the Twin Kingdoms of Aran and Ilan - Handdrawn

    Well this is embarrassing...*

    After I posted this map in the finished section, I left it hanging for a few months and continued working on the story it comes with. And then, suddenly, I realised it needed more work. So I dug up the old PSD file and started poring over it again, magnifying glasses on (not literally) and stylus in hand.*
    Over the past week, I've been shamelessly stealing with my eyes from other maps, tweaking colours, contrast and a million other things. The handdrawn look has gone out the window, I'm afraid, the greyish writing making place for more floaty, shaded lettering. Clouds of individual trees have become bulky forests and the subtle shading of the mountains has turned into a harsh contrast. The pastelly border? No more! I've turned those into a fairly standard dashed design.*

    What I'm still working on (and with much difficulty):
    * colour and texture of the forests (not happy with the current state at all);
    * ground textures (snow, grasland, dry areas, coast);
    * maybe throw in some hill ridges (especially in Barann, where there doesn't seem to be any geological structure at all atm);
    * all the suggestions you guys might have.

    This is a complete overhaul, people, so don't be shy. Let me know what you think, be harsh, and kick me in the gonads if you feel I should've left the map alone.
    Come pay me a visit on my blog!

  6. #156
      Diamond is offline
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    I, personally, thought the original version was outstanding. A truly beautiful map, well-balanced, good color scheme, enough information to give a sense of atmosphere and history without being overwhelming.

    But having said that, you are ultimately mapping for your own enjoyment, so you have to create as you see fit. God knows I've redesigned my conworlds seven billion times... And besides, redoing old(er) maps is a good way to try out new techniques and refine old ones.

    edit: and I realized I never repped you for the original. Fixed!
    "I like a look of agony, because I know it's true."

    -Emily Dickinson

  7. #157
      Ilanthar is offline
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    I completely agree with Diamond, from start to end. And I'm always redoing my old maps too, so....

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