Yea, so I've searched high and low here. I find absolutely NOTHING regarding the actualy HAND drawing of maps. Old school style. I want to make a town encounter map, but I need to know some mapping conventions. Advice on drawing a map in general is also welcome. I can draw a map, but not a good one.
It's odd that everything I've come across if for some sort of mapmaking with SOFTWARE. Has everyone abandoned the old, faithful graphite for their mapping needs? Not just for CONCEPT either. But an actualy use-in-play map drawn manually?
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Nobody does hand drawing anymore, much like most people don't own hand powered lawn mowers. I would bet that any of the well known mappers here could produce a map with any tool, pencil, ink, water color, or chalk. The computer is just another tool, a tool that helps in the production of maps. The basis for every good map is the concept, the composition and the clarity. The finished maps even computer generated or finished on the computer all have elements that even hand drawn would come out looking great.
So even though there aren't a lot of specific hand drawing tutorials, I think any tutorial you look at should provide some kind of insight for hand drawn maps.
If this sounds snotty I don't mean it too.
Last edited by DevinNight; 09-05-2010 at 01:23 PM. Reason: snotty sounding
As do I. And it is equally inaccurate to say that no one draws by hand any more. It is true, though, that we do not see a lot of hand-drawn work here, mostly because it's an electronic medium, and it's just easier to get a computer generated map posted than it is a hand-drawn one. Particularly if the map is larger than letter-sized, which makes it difficult to scan.
Personally, I enjoy brush-and-ink drawing, and I fell back on it recently when Photoshop just wasn't giving me the look I wanted as easily as I wanted it. That wasn't for a map, though.
Bryan Ray, visual effects artist
I've been hand drawing my maps ever since I start as a teen. I took a long break from both map drawing and gaming for about ten years, though, and only got back into it within the last two years or so. In that time, I was hand drawing all of my maps until I found this place. I still hand draw all of my maps. However, now I scan those maps and work on them digitally. My main reason for do this is that I'm able to digitally remake this map in a variety of different ways, some showing only borders, some concentrating on elevation or other physical features. One other great benefit of doing things digitally is that I'm able to reproduce the work immediately in the case that the first one is compromised or destroyed. Quite valuable, really.
Let's not say that *nobody* does hand-drawn anymore. I tried my Haibianr city map in PS at first but it just didn't work out (see the WIP thread for how that went) so I went back to paper and pencil (and later pen) and then scanned it in and colored it in PS. Now, I will say that I never would have tried to color the original on paper. That would have been a nightmare. I still have the original drawing in pen on smooth bristol and have been toying with the idea of coloring it with markers...but I don't want to botch it up as I'd like to frame the thing.
I have also used hand-drawn elements in several of my maps. AND I wouldn't exactly call what Djekspek does with a tablet and PS *not* hand-drawn...he just doesn't use pen and paper.
I'll join in the handpowered lawnmover crowd ... and yes, I mostly work on the computer and I do it because its such a great tool to work with, undo, layers, textures, filters a lot of stuff to play with to get the look you want. And mearrin also raises a very good point - hand drawn doesn't equal pencils, pens and so forth - you can hand draw with a tablet too... and you hand draw with a mouse too if you use the free hand tools (its just not as easy)
The important stuff is to make some great maps, and I personally ain't finished with the old fashioned tools yet
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I love my hand pushed lawn mower. It's great excercise