The island Antillia
It's been some time since I made a map for myself now… After the globe, I made a small test piece for a bigger map, but I feel that I need to flesh out that world more before I make the map, so I've began a smaller project that doesn't need much flesh at all ;)
I recently read an interesting article about phantom islands; islands that where believed to exist and where shown on maps for a long period, but actually wasn't anything else than optical illusions or just lies or jokes. One of the bigger was called Antillia and was included on most maps from the 15th to the 17th century, and was located roughly in the middle of the Atlantic, directly west of the Iberian peninsula and similar in size and shape to Portugal. And because I love mysterious, disappearing islands (who doesn't?) and alternative history, I got an urge to map it.
I'll aim for something more modern and realistic than my usual style this time, I think. A pre-digital 20th century atlas look, hopefully. I've had this 1940's Japanese map saved for inspiration for a while, and I think I'll use that style as a starting point.
For some unnecessary but fun plausibility, I started with a height map of the ocean floor from Natural Earth and found a good spot in the mid-Atlantic ridge, resembling the descriptions of Antillia, that in this alternative setting was above the surface. I drew coastlines around the tallest parts of the ridge, and put a grid over that to transfer it to paper, then I detailed the coasts and drew rivers and some lines that will become mountains. Also tested a mountain style in the center of the island. My scanner really can't scan a pencil drawing, it turns out weird-looking every time, but… this is where I am now:
That looks pretty cool! And neat idea. Looking forward to the outcome!
And it's looking good, too :D
What a wonderfully creative idea :)
Originally Posted by Lingon
Taking real-world locations and transforming
them into fantasy maps has alway been
something I've wanted to do. I'm sure your
style will look great with this project.
Good idea and already a nice start!
Today I finished the mountains. Also made some small parts of the coast less jagged, to give it some difference between cliffs and beaches, and changed a couple of rivers. The scan turned out a little better this time too :)
A little bit of progress; painted the coasts and rivers blue, and erased the sketch and help lines.
Now I have an internal conflict… Administrative areas in different colors, like a normal political map, or everything in natural colors? The first would make it more authentic and period-apropriate, the second would be more… well, more me, but it might look too uniform considering there are no deserts or arctic areas to break up all the green. On the other hand, I plan to add cities and roads in muted red, which would give it some attention-focusing points. As I'm typing this I'm leaning more and more towards natural colors, actually…
Could you do it in natural colors, and then put a political map over top of it as like, an overlay? Kind of like, just enough that you can see the regions clearly, but the naturaal color shows through?
I kinda agree with Jalyha. Or maybe testing the different solutions on a little portion (if that's possible)?
I like what you already have anyway!
I like Jalyha's suggestion; that's a good idea.