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Thread: Paid Cartography - Resources

  1. #1

    Default Paid Cartography - Resources

    How much should I charge for a map?
    What can I do if a client doesn't pay?
    How do I protect my rights?
    Can I resign from my day job and become a full time professional Mapper?

    As we have a growing number of people who are doing paid mapping commissions, I am putting together a list of links to useful information on the subject. If you are an established artist, please feel free to use this thread to tell others about your experiences, tips and lessons you have learned along the way. I know, for example that Torstan wrote a great piece about his experiences. GamerPrinter has also been very candid about his experiences as a professional mapmaker. I'll try and hunt it down their posts and link them here.

    I know we already have some very useful information on the Guild, but it's spread around widely, I will try and collect it all here but please feel free to help! Just post the link below and CL's will come and do an occasional sweep to consolidate the links into this post for easy reference.

    ----- Threads on the Guild ------

    Creative Commons Issues
    Rates for Cartography Commissions
    How long to sit on a project when you have lost the contract
    Finding Markets for Artistic Maps
    Handing over source files for a commission
    How can anybody ask for an unpaid map?
    Private Commissions of already Copyrighted Work - Should you accept them?
    More Copyright Food for thought
    Publishing your work
    Casting a Wider Freelancer Net
    map making cost
    Inspiring, Imitating and Copying
    Hiring Cartographers
    Pressure and Productivity

    ----- External Resources -----

    Ralf Schemmann Interview - Kobold Quarterly (Thanks Torstan!)
    Sean MacDonald Interview - Kobold Quarterly (Thanks Torstan!)
    How to Hire (Rip Off) an Artist - Kaitol (Thank Jaxilon!)
    How to Licence your Art - portersfield fine art (Thanks Jaxilion!)
    Contracts Proposals and Invoicing - Graham 'Logo' Smith blog (Thanks RobA!)
    Dangers of CC Licensing - (Thanks RobA!)
    Useful Legal Documents for Designers - Smashing Magazine
    The Price of Art - (Thanks Lightminder!)
    Protecting Yourself as a Designer - Webdesigner

  2. #2


    Thanks for compiling this...but "The Price of Art" link appears to be dead
    *Most of my Maps can be seen in full resolution on my blog*

    *I've made some of my maps into full adventures available for download at or

    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License unless stated otherwise in the thread.

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  5. #5
    Guild Expert Chashio's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Maine, USA


    What an excellent idea to compile all of this mapping specific and other relevant info in one place. There's a lot I haven't come across before... which makes me want to go digging in the site history for more. Rated.

    Skimming through everything... The "Pressure and Productivity" link is also dead.
    Last edited by Chashio; 09-23-2013 at 11:58 PM.

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    Was there a server move or something? Every single link to a thread here on the guild is broken, which makes me think that perhaps the way threads are organized has changed. Also, the link at is also non-functional. I see a great deal o activity at times in the commissions forum, and I feel like the material listed herein would be a very good thing to get familiar with before I start trying to do commissions (also, probably need to build a portfolio, or at least finish some maps... but one thing at a time, right?)

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    I'm not sure what's happened Tomalak. I've been away for a while and hadn't noticed the plethora of dead links. If I have time I'll use the search tool on the title phrases and update the links but the chances of that happening any time soon are pretty slim. I suggest you might want to do searches on titles that look interesting and see if you can hunt down the threads.

  9. #9


    If I understood properly, there was a problem with the module that creates URLs from the thread title. It wasn't compatible with the latest version of vBulletin, and the development had halted, so that module was removed. As a result, everything that was pointing to local human-readable URLs is now broken.

    The numerical thread IDs are still valid, though, so it should be possible to script a solution that turns


    I'm not sure if that's something that can, or should be, performed system-wide, but it could certainly be run on individual important items, like this thread and the index page.
    Bryan Ray, visual effects artist

  10. #10
    Guild Expert Jalyha's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Out of my Mind!
    Blog Entries


    "plethora" includes all the tutorial links from the sticky thread (PDFs, AND the links to the original posts), as well as about 97% of the links I've found from these forums on Google. I didn't report it because I assumed it was a known issue, but if it's not, now you know

    PS: hi again!
    Have you "liked" a post today?

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