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Thread: Newbie's first tries

  1. #1

    Default Newbie's first tries

    First of all, I’d like to say hello to everyone here as it is my first message on this forum. Recently I’ve decided to try some mapping and this site was a huge help. I know that maps I’m showing aren’t anything special (especially first two) but I had fun making each of them and I’ve decided to upload them anyway just to show some progress I think I’m making.

    1) Not much to see here, my first try at digital mapping. Couldn’t even draw a straight line…
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    2) Second try, I learned how to draw straight lines and trees during making this one
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    3) I really like this one, all of the cottages had different base colours but I am lazy and used the same shades on each one so they look very similar now.
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    First three maps were made using GIMP software, but I wasn’t entirely satisfied with results, drawing houses was time-consuming and I didn’t like the overall effect. I skimmed through this forum and noticed that lot of people seem to use Inkscape so I’ve decided to give it a try. I’m pretty happy about results, doodling is quite a fun and I like it so far but the interface is confusing and I can’t wrap my head around how it works. Instead of creating whole map in Inkscape I’ve decided to try doing some simple lineart in Inkscape and then work on it in GIMP to add colours and shades. I did as I thought and here are results:

    1) Before using GIMP, only Inkscape used so far:
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    2) After adding base colours and roof shades in GIMP:
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    This was supposed to be simple map, made without any previous sketch and not realistic, made just to try out how using Inkscape and GIMP to create single map would work out.

    I’ve just noticed that I messed up shading on domes in last map…

    Any comments and criticism are warmly welcome (well, mostly criticism – I think that I can learn from it more).

    Ah, I’d almost forgotten, as you probably noticed English isn’t my native language and I’m sorry for any possible mistakes.
    Last edited by szym; 04-22-2012 at 04:52 AM.

  2. #2
    Guild Journeyer Facebook Connected anstett's Avatar
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    Feb 2011


    For a preference I like the line art version you did in inkscape over the color version of the map. It seems cleaner and ready to use.

    We do not stop playing because we grow old.
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  3. #3
    Guild Expert jbgibson's Avatar
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    Oct 2009
    Alabama, USA


    That's a great start! Have a smidgen of rep. I like what you have going with the city. Thoughts - it's fine to glom a bunch of the buildings up next to each other. And in the places like upper right where you have a big collection of buildings, it could work to suggest paths and alleys between some. If you're shading the roofs (which you're doing OK; agreed the light direction on the domes is hinky) then it'll help if you have the city walls casting a bit of shadow too.

    If you cut the saturation of the red and yellow roofs in that third map they'll look less like new construction, and more like they've been there a while. Again, shadows on the ground as well as on the roofs would go over well.

    Nice stuff - and welcome to the Guild!

  4. #4
    Community Leader Guild Sponsor arsheesh's Avatar
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    Oct 2009


    Yeah, this is really nice, especially given it's your first attempts (and the fact that there are virtually no tutorials here on town creation in GIMP/Inkscape). Nicely done.


  5. #5


    Thank you for your comments. The main purpose of the city map was to try creating buildings in Inkscape, map was done without any specific use in mind so I didn’t do pathways (well, that plus the fact that I’m lazy), this is also reason why most of the buildings don’t keep scale.

    Here is an early WIP picture of next map, only basic shapes and placement of the buildings can be seen so far. It will take a while to do this one because I’m trying to do it entirely in Inkscape. I wasn’t sure whether I’ll manage to do it but using this software is getting easier and easier so I’m staying positive

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  6. #6


    I think all four maps look pretty good but the city looks great. Not sure whether I prefer the black and white or the colour one - I like them both. I'm interested to see how your latest one turns out as it has a pretty interesting layout. I have hardly used inkscape so I can't really offer any suggestions on that point.

    Anyway, g'luck with it!

  7. #7
    Guild Member mozltovcoktail's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Cambridge, MA


    Nicely done!

    For #2, did you use render>clouds for both the land and water?

  8. #8


    Thank you for your feedback

    @ jbgibson
    I tried to work with saturation and shadows as you suggested. Here is the result:
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    I used render->clouds for water and render->plasma for land.

    I hadn’t much time lately so there almost no progress. Only placement of terrain and outlines of buildings. I wanted to have two versions of the map, colorful and printer friendly but it turns out that it is too easy to accidentally change layers and I would need to redo half of the map. Is there an option in Inkscape to change every color but black into alpha?

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  9. #9
    Guild Artisan landorl's Avatar
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    Aug 2007
    Brandon, FL - USA


    Great looking maps! Good first effort.

  10. #10
    Guild Expert jbgibson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Alabama, USA


    Ooooh, yeah - the desaturated look is better. You're doing ok with the shadows except the yellow roofs are shaded as if they were V-shaped, not A-shaped. :-) Stare at them a bit and you'll see it, especially if you have a lightbulb somewhere above and to the right of your screen.

    And the Inkscape city is getting interesting too. Good work!

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