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Thread: Style Test

  1. #1
      Diamond is offline
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    Post Style Test

    I'm going to be undertaking a massive mapping project pretty soon, and I'm wanting a simple yet tasteful style to do each section in. Since I plan to be able to link every map section together into one uber-map, I can't really do something in the theme of my recent maps, that is, with Ascension's or Pasis type landscapes/mountains, etc., as much as I dearly love those styles.

    So I've come up with what I think looks pretty nice so far. It needs some work yet, specifically, I want to gradually fade out the edges of the woodcut effect on the seas, and I want to find a simple pattern to put over the forests in lieu of the bog-standard CS pattern that's on there now.

    Anyway, here's a small test sample. Is the text legible? Is it obvious which are towns and which are cities? Suggestions? Criticism? Comments?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Style Test-styletest1a.jpg  

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      Jaxilon is offline
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    It looks very clean to me.

    I have to work just a bit to read the smaller type but my eyes are not what they used to be. The small ones look a tad fuzzy to me.

    Cities are the larger circles but maybe you can do something to make them stand out as different from the towns like double circle them or something? I wouldn't clutter it up too much though if I were you. It looks good.
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      Diamond is offline
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    Good point on the cities; I'll try a double circle there, maybe a thin outer ring and a thicker inner ring.

    As for the type size, it should be easier to read on the actual maps; I used a smaller font size for this sample, since it's a relatively small area. The town names are in Times New Roman, 2.5px, but that will likely be 4px on the official maps, with the city names a bit bigger yet, maybe 6px. Alternately, mayble I'll keep the size the same (I kind of like the way the tiny type looks), but work on cleaning it up and making it more readable.

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      rdanhenry is offline
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    I like this style. The size difference between city and town is enough to tell them apart, but a little more distinct would make it easier. You might also want to create a symbol for the capital city/town. A dot or cross that goes inside the circle symbol would make a good marker for the capital.

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    I think it looks good.

    Like Jaxilon I had problems reading the smallest text (but it was still legible), but you have a plan to fix that so it's not a big deal.

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      landorl is offline
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    I like most of what you have, but the forest bothers me a little. I think that it might look better with either an outline, or possibly some sort of subtle texture. Maybe both.

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      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diamond View Post
    So I've come up with what I think looks pretty nice so far. It needs some work yet, specifically, I want to gradually fade out the edges of the woodcut effect on the seas.
    Note sure if you know how to do this or not, but I almost always promote using layer masks and fill the image with your "texture" and then masking out the bits you don't want shown(perhaps with Blur and a nice large fuzzy brush on the layer mask instead of the image.
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      Diamond is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by landorl View Post
    I like most of what you have, but the forest bothers me a little. I think that it might look better with either an outline, or possibly some sort of subtle texture. Maybe both.
    There's a very very subtle texture on there now, perhaps too subtle. I want to come up with one that will make the forests pop a little bit more, but not too much; I don't want them to dominate the map. For that reason, I'll most likely not put an outline around them; espcially since that could confuse the path of rivers to the viewer's eye.

    Quote Originally Posted by jfrazierjr View Post
    Note sure if you know how to do this or not, but I almost always promote using layer masks and fill the image with your "texture" and then masking out the bits you don't want shown(perhaps with Blur and a nice large fuzzy brush on the layer mask instead of the image.
    Yep, I do know how to do that, and that's what I've got in mind for this. I just didn't get too in-depth on the sample.

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    For feathering out that woodcut there are a lot of different techniques. The easiest is to select the landmass, increase the selection, feather the selection, invert the selection, then delete. If you want your lines to be pointy on the end then you'd have to make a dotted line around the coast then use some wind or motion blur. If you want squiggly lines then you also have to add a ripple or a wave. Myself, I use a small black and clear checkerboard pattern, then wind, then ripple, then feathered selection delete to soften the points.

    What you have so far looks pretty nice
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    Maybe add some icons into the region. A good smattering of tree icons (without trying to tile the area) will give the idea that the coloured region is a forest... You can then use similar techniques for swamps, jungles, etc
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