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Thread: Practice Map

  1. #1
    Community Leader Torq's Avatar
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    Map Practice Map

    This is a continental/regional map that I have been putting together to practise a few things. I'm really trying to settle on a style for use in the world mapping project mentioned in the thread "Thinking Big about Guild Maps".

    All the labelling was done using Inkscape and the mapping using Gimp (and Terranoise for the underlying ridged perlin). I notice when I brought the Inkscape labels back into Gimp that some of the text, particularly the smaller test, suddenly looks awful. The font really has translated badly, something to be aware of for later maps.

    Anyway, please let me have your comments.

    Torq
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    Last edited by RobA; 04-11-2013 at 12:52 PM.
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    Software Used: Terranoise, Wilbur, Terragen, The Gimp, Inkscape, Mojoworld

  2. #2
    Community Leader NeonKnight's Avatar
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    Well, I like it. The mountains....i'm not sure. I like them, and I don;t....need to think on those. The Fonts. Look fine to me.
    Daniel the Neon Knight: Campaign Cartographer User

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  4. #4
    Guild Journeyer thebax2k's Avatar
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    Nice map Torq. I saw your early posts on creating the kind of terrain used in the map, and its impressive to see a map with full colors and labels. Keep it up, you keep getting better with each iteration.

    Now for the brickbats. Some of the mountains (such as the Grimious Faces) are a bit to "striated" for my tastes. I'm not sure how you would do it, but any method that breaks up the lines and made the range look more "moutainy" would be good.

    Also, you might want to think about the transition between the mountains and the flat lands on the map. I pointed out to another map maker that his map looked unrealistic because there were no hills around the mountains, but this map seems to have the opposite problem--the transition is perhaps too much, looking less like hills and more like a smudge between the features. If there is a way to make the hill areas look more "hilly", that would be good.

    As for the fonts, the fonts do not look bad per se, but the contrast between some of the land features and the labels on them makes them hard to read. Change the green colors of the labels on the forests to something else (green text on a light green background does not contrast well). Also, you might want to think about changing the yellow text you use for the mountains. I'm not sure if its the size of the text or the yellow color on the black background, but there has to be a better way to display the labels.

    You might also wish to brighten up some of the map features (such as the forests, mountains and steppes). I have no desire for your map to look like a cartoon, but some of the features seem a bit muted, perhaps overly so.

    A map key in a corner would be good (although given that this is a practice map, its not critical).

    Take my observations with a grain of salt Torq. I think you have the beginnings of a great map here, a little refinement and it will look incredible.

  5. #5
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    I love your muted colors. I'd be worried if I ever tried to print them, but since none of them push to the edge of the CMYK color gamut, they should work well enough.

    The the mountians have this long straight ridge that I'm not used to thinking of in mountians. That might be what is making people step back from them.

    I personally got really into the map and enjoyed it a lot. The shadows in the oceans was a nice touch.

  6. #6
    Community Leader Gracious Donor ravells's Avatar
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    I absolutely love it. You've really made this style of mapping your own. It's so good seeing it being built up from the early stages to fruition - I just wish I had the self discipline to do the same!

    The sense of scale really comes out of it for me, and I love the little shipwreck symbols. Putting some of the angled text on a curve would have been a nice touch though, but what I love about it the most is your choice of names - they're really evocative.

    Are you going to use this for a campaign?

  7. #7
    Community Leader Torq's Avatar
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    Thanks all for the kind words and also for the pointers.

    "The mountains....i'm not sure. I like them, and I don;t....need to think on those."

    "Now for the brickbats. Some of the mountains (such as the Grimious Faces) are a bit to "striated" for my tastes. I'm not sure how you would do it, but any method that breaks up the lines and made the range look more "moutainy" would be good."

    "The the mountians have this long straight ridge that I'm not used to thinking of in mountians. That might be what is making people step back from them."

    Mountains are something I need to work a lot more on. I am still struggling to get the right look. On the other hand I think actually looking at mountains from above revelas something we dont often contemplate when we do fantasy mapping. It is often extremely difficult to make out peaks from above. What looks like a row of separate peaks from the ground often looks more like a ridge from above.

    "How did you bring it into GIMP from Inkscape? As SVG paths or as an exported bitmap?"

    I save it as an SVG path and then just opened it in Gimp and added the whole thing as a layer.

    "You might also wish to brighten up some of the map features (such as the forests, mountains and steppes). I have no desire for your map to look like a cartoon, but some of the features seem a bit muted, perhaps overly so."

    "I love your muted colors. I'd be worried if I ever tried to print them, but since none of them push to the edge of the CMYK color gamut, they should work well enough."

    I tend towards more muted colours. I'm not sure why but it just seems easier on the eye. Maybe it allows the eye to be drawn more easily to the labels and key features.

    "Are you going to use this for a campaign?"

    No, I dont have a campaign in mind. It really was a practise. I havn't done much with labels and particularly a map thats really crowded with them, so I just wanted to take it to that stage. If anyone wants to use it for their campaign they are absolutely welcome.

    Thanks again.

    Torq
    The internet! It\'ll never catch on.

    Software Used: Terranoise, Wilbur, Terragen, The Gimp, Inkscape, Mojoworld

  8. #8
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    I know you had a tendency toward the muted colors. I didn't really have any thoughts for myself on the subject. I usually went for the brighter and higher contrast in my color palette to avoid confusion. But you prove that with a little texture to the image the need is diminished.

    To clarify that, I don't have any problems differentiating the grasslands from the forests and the deserts in your maps, despite your color choices running much closer together. I suspect that it's the excellent work you do into adding a texture to those areas.

  9. #9
    Guild Adept loogie's Avatar
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    looks great, i agree with your pts about the mountains... also, tho this isn't really a big deal, is that the maps was really busy for me... to much text (or at least strong text colours that stand out and draw the eye... you got a lot of ground to cover there and obviously a lot of labels.. so i would suggest breaking it into sections, leaving stuff out in the map the size it is, or try having a bit of a ladder, as far as dull or weak text styles for less important object, and dark strong ones for the features that need to stand out...

    other then that i like everything so far
    Photoshop, CC3, ArcGIS, Bryce, Illustrator, Maptool

  10. #10
    Guild Artisan su_liam's Avatar
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    I really, really like this. I don't mind the striated mountains. I suspect you add an erosion stage and those would make a lovely cordillera. My only problem is that you have some pretty bad clipping on the Godsrage Mountains.

    Could you describe your terranoise tree in some detail? Is it just a ridged perlin? If so, wow.

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