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Thread: Cailltir - Capital City of Araniell

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    Guild Journeyer Facebook Connected Caenwyr's Avatar
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    Default Cailltir - Capital City of Araniell

    Hi all!

    It's been a while since my last thread, but that doesn't mean I haven't been working. As you can probably imagine, I've been working on the exact same world I've done all my other maps about. I kinda feel my "Twin Kingdoms" map is finished now (wow, I should make a finished map thread, shouldn't I?), and now I'm going in deeper detail. My current project: a city map of the capital of the eastern kingdom: Cailltir. (don't worry about the castle in the lower right hand corner - it's a WIP!)

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    Cailltir is a large city, especially to late medieval standards: it's about 4.8 km˛ (1.9 sq mi) in area and, with a population density similar to London's in the late 14th century (106 people per acre according to this source, which is about 26,000 per km˛), should boast a population of roughly 126,000 people.
    Now, I'm not sure I will keep these figures, as they all depend on the scale of the map. At the moment 1 pixel equals 1 meter. However, if for some reason or other I decide to double that (1 px = 2 m), it would mean a quadrupling of the area and thus the population, clocking in at a nice half million. Which doesn't sound bad at all for the capital of such a large kingdom. Still, as it is now, I prefer to keep the official scale of 1 meter per pixel - unless of course you think that doesn't fit with the dimensions of the city blocks, street widths etc etc etc!

    The way the map looks now, is actually based on a Pyrandons fabulous tutorial. However, while he obviously succeeded in drawing in decent-looking alleys and backyards, my insight in scale and reality is apparently somewhat off. Most of the building blocks in the map above turned out to be only about 20 meters wide, there's only 2 street widths on the entire map, sharp corners are all rounded on the outside due to the roundedness of the brush and... well, there's tons of other things wrong with the dimensions and style of the map as well.

    So I basically decided to start over. And this time, I took a peak at feanaaro's amazing B&W city map. That was the style I wanted.

    Now, since Cailltir is a fairly big city, and considering the massive scale of my map (1 meter per pixel, remember?) I thought it best not to do it all in one humongous file. I've started creating submaps for every district, beginning with the oldest part of the town. This is what I have at the moment:

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    What do you think? Am I on the right track, scale and roadshapewise? If so, I can continue with the rest of the districts.
    Last edited by Caenwyr; 07-05-2013 at 11:20 AM.
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    Not that you have to copy my style in every detail, however... my two cents are that an important part of that was that all the shadows were noisy, while yours are sharp and precise. Also, the texture for the buildings seems too "full", if you know what I mean.
    The layout seems good to me, perhaps you could leave less space in between adjacent houses (you can get that also playing with the thickness of borders).

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    Guild Journeyer Facebook Connected Caenwyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by feanaaro View Post
    Not that you have to copy my style in every detail, however... my two cents are that an important part of that was that all the shadows were noisy, while yours are sharp and precise. Also, the texture for the buildings seems too "full", if you know what I mean.
    The layout seems good to me, perhaps you could leave less space in between adjacent houses (you can get that also playing with the thickness of borders).
    You're absolutely right with regards to the shadows. Let's just say these are preliminary results: when all districts are finished, I intend to merge only the basic layers (building blocks, coast lines, walls) into one document, and tweak the hell out of them together instead of seperately. Once I'm at that point (which might take some more weeks), you'll see me blending the shadows until they look just fine. By the way, these shadows are not done with an emboss/bevel tool, but simply by copying the original layer, turning it black and shifting it a bit (well actually, shifting the roofs a bit - the shadows are already where they belong). Argh, what an undertaking again!
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    Since you are not doing individual shadows for each building, which could be useful but definitely is another kind of map, wouldn't be easier to just use the drop shadow effect? (which includes also the noise option). Also, you may want to differentiate the magnitudes of different kind of shadows (I did just regular buildings, city walls, and outstanding buildings, but one could use more levels) so merging everything could make things more difficult in the end.

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    I actually like both styles. I've seen several town maps created using Pyrandon's tutorial and yours is one of the more promising ones. Too bad it looks like you won't be completing it. But on in the plus column I am keen to see you flesh out the second map a bit more.

    Cheers,
    -Arsheesh

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    Guild Journeyer Facebook Connected Caenwyr's Avatar
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    So here's the second Cailltirian district. It's the southernmost part of the city, the place where houses are small and close together, the place where the kind of business happens that doesn't stand the daylight. A necessary attribute for any self-respecting city, but not one to be taken lightly. For that reason, it's seperated from the city proper by a thick wall, and a moat in front of that, so if a fire should break out in the Pit (as the district is called), the rest of the city is not affected.

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    Keep in mind that the shadows, the colour cast, the coastline etc are still preliminary. All of that will be changed and finetuned afterwards. I also did a quick combination of this district and the previous one:

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    Now I'm looking at it, it seems the building blocks of my first district are quite a bit too large - I may have to redraw them. What do you think?

    Quote Originally Posted by arsheesh View Post
    I actually like both styles. I've seen several town maps created using Pyrandon's tutorial and yours is one of the more promising ones. Too bad it looks like you won't be completing it. But on in the plus column I am keen to see you flesh out the second map a bit more.
    Actually, I might still decide to continue the Pyrandon look! It shouldn't be too hard changing the colour of the building blocks, and I already have the background ready. So basically, I think I should be able to do both a parchment-ish map, and a coloured one. But that's for the distant future. Right now, all I can think of is drawing district 3 is my main concern .
    Last edited by Caenwyr; 07-10-2013 at 10:14 AM.
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    Very Nice. Do you have an overview map that just out lines the districts. I'm curios to what the overall map will look like.

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    Guild Journeyer Facebook Connected Caenwyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vinoex View Post
    Very Nice. Do you have an overview map that just out lines the districts. I'm curios to what the overall map will look like.
    Thanks Vinoex, I'm glad you like it! With regards to your question on the districts: I don't have a dedicated districts map, but you can use the one at the beginning of this thread: every part of the city that is/used to be behind city walls is a separate district. Most walls have disappeared by the time Cailltir reached the size shown in the map, but the moats are still there.

    Basically there's 8 districts:

    1. Old Town
      the semicircular district built around the old motte and bailey castle that's the seed of the city.
    2. King's Hill
      the district north of Old Town, grown around the new royal castle on the hill of the same name.
    3. Goldvale
      the district southeast of King's Hill, which arose along the road to the New Palace (to the south). This is where the rich and famous have their crib.
    4. The Pit
      the district south of Old Town. The Pit is actually situated outside the city walls, separated from it by a nice big moat. What happens in the Pit, stays in the Pit. While it certainly has a rough charm during the day, the Pit is not the best place to take a midnight stroll. Chances are you wake up the next morning chained to a galley rowing bench - or not at all. You can imagine most of the action in my story takes place in this most colourful of districts.
    5. River Port
      the district north of King's Hill. Originally a separate village on the banks of the river, but long incorporated within the city walls. Sometimes called Braenic, after the village.
    6. The Marches
      lying east of King’s Hill, the Marches is a low-lying country as the name suggests, originally a swamp but long reclaimed and now one of the most densely populated areas of the city.
    7. Fair Town
      the northernmost city district, built on the original site of the famous yearly Cailltir Fair (which is now held on the west bank of the river). Much of the area is still dominated by agriculture though, especially to the north, but the city is slowly creeping closer.
    8. The Cathedral (or Cathedral Island, even though it's actually several islands)
      the stronghold of the Faith, started out as a small monastery on the northern tip, but grew over the centuries to a massive temple surrounded by administrative buildings, shops, houses, small palaces, docks and ship wharfs, all managed by the Faith.



    The districts between the inner and the outer walls are sometimes collectively called New Town, even though the Goldvale district is usually not considered part of that: while the rest of New Town is mainly inhabited by low to medium incomes, Goldvale sports the richest people in the city (or at least those just short of being rich enough to purchase an apartment in the New Palace, the nexus of worldly power)

    -----------------------------------------------

    Enough twaddle. I would like to introduce the King’s Hill and Cathedral districts, and a complete revamp of Old Town. As stated in my previous post, I had to redo that district because the buildings were just too far apart. It took me a while and quite a bit of sweat and tears, but here we are:

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    It's horribly slow work, but that's the nature of the job I guess. At the moment, the area I've drawn is already 2 km long and about 1 km wide at its widest. It sports roughly 45,000 inhabitants. The idea is to triple that effort, but I can't even begin to imagine how long that's going to take. A few weeks at least. But I keep strong .

    Let me know what you think!
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    Community Leader Gracious Donor - Max -'s Avatar
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    Overall the map is looking good so far but the blocks shapes looks a bit too similar one from another, especially when zoomed out.

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    Guild Journeyer Facebook Connected Caenwyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by - Max - View Post
    Overall the map is looking good so far but the blocks shapes looks a bit too similar one from another, especially when zoomed out.
    They do? That's nasty, they actually took me a helluva lotta time drawing them separately. Oh well, I'll have to correct that in post, I guess. Anyhoo, I still plan to add temples, monuments etc afterwards, so that'll probably break the monotony a bit.
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