This is a rather open-ended project.
I am currently working on a fantasy novel which I plan to turn into a series, and I am in need of a continent. As I am a perfectionist with absolutely zero artistic abilities, even after trying to use FT and CCW, I am unable to refine my story without a map. I have everything I need to write the story except a map. The overall story is flexible enough that I can easily mold it to whatever terrain I receive with a few considerations.
-One landmass, whether polar (as in the Belgariad maps) or surrounded by oceans. The general shape and position of the continent is up to you.
-The continent, or continents if connected by a reasonable strip of passable land, must have around 6-10 'sections' to serve as Kingdoms/Empires/Etc. Relative size of these kingdoms is flexible, as my first installment focuses only on one kingdom.
-The regions must be separated by some natural means, such as rivers, mountain ranges, etc. I'm looking for plausibility more than contrivance, so please no Mordor Mountain Enclosures.
-Outside of the major boundaries defining each kingdom's territory, no detail is needed in any of the kingdoms save for the one I am working on. A simple line of demarcation, slight-shading of the area, and a label is sufficient.
The region which I am making use of must have a certain degree of detail. This map is not meant to be printed or distributed commercially; it is for my own reference in finalizing my story, and therefore doesn't need to be perfect. Something simple like this (for only the one region) is what I'm looking for:
I do not mean to insult the artist of that map by using the word 'simple'; it is beautiful. What I mean to say is, I can see hills, mountains, lakes, rivers, forests, and the ocean shoreline. That's all I really need to start with. I have a number of towns, cities, and landmarks to add in, and I need a certain amount of detailed natural features to do that.
-There will be a few details that I would like to be incorporated, but most of it is up to your imagination.
[Details of the Project]
Here's what I'm looking for:
-Dimensions: For the focused image of my important region, I'd say around 1500x1500, depending on shape. I'm flexible with this, as long as I can make out details. This is for personal use only, so I'm more than willing to compromise.
-Scale: The region I will be working with is approximately 50k square miles. It will be somewhat smaller than most of the other regions. This isn't the only continent on the planet, so don't be concerned over the relative smallness of it.
-Sketch out 3-10 or so possible continents with very, very general landmarks to denote regions. I must emphasize general here...I'm talking quick sketches you can do in MS Paint in under 2 minutes. This step will allow me to select an outline I am happy with.
If your sketch is too much more detailed than that, you tried too hard. To start with I really just want to pick an overview that looks like I can work with it, so be fast, loose, and creative. Feel free to have a few land-locked regions if you wish. Add some offshore island nations if you want.
-After I select an outline, I will specify the region I want to focus on. As mentioned above, I need a focused image of the region with enough surrounding space to denote neighboring regions. If you want to create a huge image of the whole continent, then zoom into my region to do your detailed work, that's awesome, but not required. Whatever works for you.
-You will create the region I am interested in. I have a few minor details for you to implement, but mostly it's up to you. At this point you will create the mountains, rivers, lakes, etc.
-I will need a scale of some sort so that I can properly place man-made landmarks.
-After receiving your nearly-completed image, I will return a copy of that image with markings indicating towns/cities/roads, as well as their labels. This will be done horribly in PS, and you will be free to make fun of my lack of skill with this program. There will be a fair number of towns/cities/etc, probably around 30-50. This isn't common with most maps, but since I am using this to fill in locations within the story, I need a bit more detail. You can use whatever style (within reason) you choose in marking the cities/towns, as long as they are distinguishable from each other. We'll work out the details.
-Use whatever format works for you, as long as I can open it in PS/Paint to make notes.
-Time frame: I would prefer to get a workable first draft within a week or so in order to finalize the details of my novel. There is no hard limit, but the sooner I get something I can use, the better. Let's set a hard limit of 1 month.
-Copy-write: I will have the right to use the image for commercial purposes, the artist will have the right to exhibit the image as part of his portfolio but not to exploit it for commercial gain. I do not plan on using this map for the commercial version of my novel, it's really just for reference.
-I probably made this sound more complicated that it really is. I have everything but a map and a few details that will come from it. You will create me a map with a small amount of continuing input from me. I will be quick in answering any concerns you have, and I will not needlessly bog you down with minor details or corrections. I am very flexible with this project, and will do my best to work with you to make it as painless as possible.
-I plan on releasing this novel as an e-reader and then moving onto print. If I am successful in doing so, I will offer you first priority in completing other regions as needed at a similar price. Should you decline or be unreachable, I reserve the right to ask another artist to complete the other regions as needed using your work as a general guideline. They will not be permitted to use your work within their own.
-Price: $100 via Paypal for a general continent overview and a focus on one region per my guidelines.
josh.athy at gmail dot com
Please feel free to post/email me links to your previous works. Also feel free to request clarification on anything. I'm sure I glossed over an important detail or two.