Anator is the country in my D&D world that my players are currently exploring. So I've drawn it several times with varying levels of detail. The players acquired a full map of the country some time ago so it's about time I actually gave them that map. After some doodling I've decided to make the map in a hand drawn medieval style.
I still need to find one of my older maps to remind me what the coastline looks like north of the cut off. Or I might just crop the map there since north of there is actually a different country.
Ooh, I am really digging those forests! Lovely work so far
I realized for the style I'm going for I definitely need to place the rivers before the trees. So many of them will have to be redrawn/moved/erased. But I'll worry about that later. For now the river layer! I also placed town markers. These probably aren't the final markers. I just wanted to make sure I knew where all the towns were. Each one is the capital of a Barony.
I don't remember what exactly prompted me to do this but I calculated the area of the country (66,464 miles^2) and placed it on top of a map of England for comparison.
Done placing rivers for now. I expanded the northern border and marked out where the trees need to be drawn in green. I also marked out major roads and paths. I'm probably going to redraw them at some point, but for now I know where they are. In other news I've become nocturnal. Oh, and I drew a new avatar.
You know what I dig the most about that map? Those mountains. I tried something like that once, but in my addiction to detail I discarded the idea way too early, obviously. It's a really good way of showing the topography without taking away too much space for other things like towns.
On the other hand, because those mountains/hills are just lines they clash with the rivers. Maybe do them in a different colour, if you're using colour anyway? Or draw the mountains with a thicker brush. Just a suggestion.
I also think the stroke on the coastline is too thick and blurs the details.
Close up of how far I've gotten. My original plan was to draw all the trees and then go back and do all the mountain lines and ground shadows. But, drawing trees gets boring. So this section is basically what a finished section will look like (at least in terms of line work). I want everything to be clear from the line work so that I'll be able to print it in black and white and give it to my players to mark up.
As for color, nothings final (except the roads will most likely stay in red).
Some things still to do:
- Draw city/town icons
- Make a nice parchment texture (any suggestions as to anyone's favorite tutorial for this would be appreciated)
- Clean up the rivers (width, jaggedness, flowing on top of trees)
Last edited by flocko; 03-09-2014 at 03:33 AM. Reason: Added BW version
I like the choice of color in the left one!
Though I like the way you worked on the mountains, it's not what I meant. The rasterized shadows are nice, but what I liked most about the old version was that there weren't any shadows or lines at all. That way you can draw a lot more in between without it looking as if something's just been drawn over them. (I hope you can follow me)
To clarify, my idea of how to set off the mountains better was this one:
I did this with the brush size control set to pen pressure, so you can fade the lines in and out. That way your ridges would be more dominant. Don't know if that would work on the whole map, though. Anyway, the way you did it in the last version works very well, too!
As for the trees: brilliant! I tried to find a good way to make forests when I started mapping and wanted something like your style. I am assuming you drew each tree individually? I can see why you find that tedious and boring.
To make it a little less tedious you colud work with the clone stamp tool. Are you using Photoshop? Because if youre working with Gimp, I think you could make simple tree stamp with it. Doesn't really work with Photoshop, though, because PS uses greyscale for brush tips.
Anyway, keep going, looks promising!
Mountains stand out great to my eye. I second the comment about the excellence of the trees. The coast is currently to thick and makes all the shapes there look bloby and over rounded in a way the looks like a outsized digital brush was used. Very attractive over all and a great match between trees and mountains.