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    Guild Member aeronox's Avatar
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    Dec 2007
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    Melbourne, Australia
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    Tutorial My Photoshop tools

    I have attached some of the tools I use to make my pseudo-realistic maps...

    All you need in Photoshop is (in z-order from top to bottom)

    Mountain layer: apply the layer style, then use the Mountains Dual brush (adjust size using [ and ] ) and paint mountains in. Adjust the layer style -> Bevel/Emboss size & Bevel/Emboss -> Contour scale, so it suits the scale of your map. Smaller mountains can be added using the Single brush... For small hills, reduce the opacity of the brush.

    Vegetation layer: use the Grass 2-colour brush, remembering it uses both foreground and background colours. Apply the vegetation layer style.

    Land-base layer: filled only where there is land. So land=fill, water=transparent. All you need to do here is apply the layer style.

    Ocean layer: just fill it with a deep blue, slightly more on the green side than purple, and not too saturated. Paint over it with the "Waves" brush preset. Now select the "Shallows" brush preset, adjust the size as required, and paint roughly around the coast.



    I make additional layers for ice, aridity (lack of precipitation/desert), marshland/swamp. My ice layer includes a massive gradient that reduces the saturation of latitudes close to the pole.

    For vegetation colours, choose vibrant greens for tropical areas, yellowish greens for temperate areas, and bluish green for alpine/tundra areas. Learn about biomes, climates and rainfall.
    Attached Files Attached Files

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