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  1. #1
    Community Leader pyrandon's Avatar
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    Post I'd appreciate your input

    Hello, friends. This is my first post.

    I have recently created a map for the Internet fantasy campaign I GM each week--an update from the old Autorealm map I whipped up a few years ago.

    Here's the link: http://www.ormonds.net/rpg/westaven/...llexia_985.jpg

    I was shooting for that fine line between antique player handout map and useful GM map. Hence, you can see I kept things artistic rather than realistic, although I know a map such as this would never have been produced by a cartographer of yore.

    I created the map in Photoshop, which which I am a complete noob. In fact, I basically learned what I know of the program by grappling with the help files while making this map. So anything and everything you can tell me to improve this work before I unveil it to my players would be much appreciated.

    Thank you,
    Don
    GM, Westaven
    Last edited by pyrandon; 08-02-2007 at 01:15 PM. Reason: fixed link

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    Community Leader RPMiller's Avatar
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    LOL Anything you can improve... you're funny. That is a really nice map!

    I guess if I were to really, and I mean really, get nitpicky I would say the hashing on the ocean needs to be reduced.

    Typically that style of hashing only goes a short distance off the coast it doesn't fill the body of water.

    As for the rest of the map.... I'll have to look really close at the whole thing since there is nothing that jumps out at me.

  3. #3
    Community Leader pyrandon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RPMiller
    LOL Anything you can improve... you're funny. That is a really nice map!
    Wow--thanks! I've always liked maps You should see my 1986 high school geometry notebook: while the other kids were doodling the words "Rebel Yell" out of lightning bolts, I was mapping the mythical, black land of "Quadratica" and its evil, mathamagician king Pythagor-ass :wink:

    Quote Originally Posted by RPMiller
    I guess if I were to really, and I mean really, get nitpicky I would say the hashing on the ocean needs to be reduced.

    Typically that style of hashing only goes a short distance off the coast it doesn't fill the body of water.
    Yes, I've noticed fantasy mappers love that style, and my first draft of this one did it too. Instead I decided to half-copy a style I found in J.B. Post's An Atlas of Fantasy (Ballantine, 1979): it's a 1935 map of "The Three Kingdoms" for an E.R. Eddison book I don't know (Mistress of Mistresses, which I've never read); for that map, water is filled with a series of parallel lines much like on my map. Although it's odd that the water is darker than the land, it looks nice--so I decided to pay the compliment of stealing it. On the "pattern" map, though, the lines are twice as thick as mine, twice as frequent, and a bit "messier," but it's a black & white ink job so it needed that fill, whereas mine is an attempt at an ink on watercolor that can rely on color for much of the fill effect.

    Wow. I sure didn't mean to write a dissertation for a reply! Sorry 'bout that!

    Anyway, I know you said you're being "nitpicky," but do you think the lines look silly, odd, or just different? Thanks for the initial look-see; if you have any other advice I'd love it!
    Don
    GM, Westaven
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    Administrator Facebook Connected Robbie's Avatar
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    Alls I gots to say is...wow...very nice work. I disagree with my esteemed colleague RPMiller and I think the lines in the ocean are just fine, Considering the aspect ratio of the overall map, it makes sense to patternize the ocean rather than leave all that blank space. And since maps also often follow standardized paper sizes, cropping would be bad. So what better way to fill the space than with a line pattern...nice work my friend.
    Robbie Powell - Site Admin

  5. #5
    Community Leader pyrandon's Avatar
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    Thank you very much--to both of you--for your time & input. I greatly appreciate it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arcana
    Considering the aspect ratio of the overall map, it makes sense to patternize the ocean rather than leave all that blank space. And since maps also often follow standardized paper sizes, cropping would be bad. So what better way to fill the space than with a line pattern.
    If it's not too much trouble, could you explain the above statement to me? I'm not exactly sure what my "aspect ratio" was or how I did it... I assume that means the size of the drawing (?); I upped it from the standard 8.5 x 11 because I once heard that it's better to draw in Photoshop larger than you want, then scale it back for printing time (although since I play online, I really don't do much printing.) Is that right?

    Thanks again!
    Don
    GM, Westaven
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    Administrator Facebook Connected Robbie's Avatar
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    Yes Sorry, the aspect ratio is the ratio of height to width...in the case of 8.5x11 the ratio is 1.3 I think. standard screen resolutions for example are 1.33. (640 divided by 480, 800 divided by 600, etc.)
    Robbie Powell - Site Admin

  7. #7
    Guild Member Talamar's Avatar
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    @pyrandon:

    really great map, especially since it seems to be your first try with photoshop. really marvelous.


    now sth other (and thats not advertising):
    If you like to create more maps like this and if you want to do it in a lot easier way, you should lock an eye on the Campaign Cartographer 3 software by ProFantasy. (www.profantasy.com).
    Especially the new Cartographers Annuals addons bring styles with them, which could help you perhaps.
    You really should have a look.

    Here: http://www.profantasy.com/products/cc3.asp

    and I have to repeat: that is no advertising since I am just a logntime user of the software suite.
    Come to where the kobolds are...
    www.dnd-gate.de - The German D&D Community

  8. #8
    Community Leader pyrandon's Avatar
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    Thank you, Talamar, for the compliment. And no need to qualify the recommendation of CC3 (unless, of course, Profantasy gives you a financial kickback! ) I need all the help I can get!

    I did look into CC2 awhile back due to its popularity, and unfortunately was not overly impressed. CC3 is much, much better (kudos to the Profantasy guys!), but I'm going to stick with Illustrator/Photoshop since I've already started learning them; they are much more flexible and powerful, albeit with a steeper learning curve. I do own Dundjinni & have had much success & enjoyment with it, but I think I'll even start making my floor plans with the Adobe suite--especially since I found tutorials such as this, which I am definitely going to try to adapt to my RPG! (Or just steal outright, if a luxury cruise ship ever pulls into one of my medieval ports!)

    Thanks again so much for your compliment & input; both truly mean a lot to me.

    --Don
    Don
    GM, Westaven
    My gallery is here
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    "Keep your mind in hell, but despair not." --Saint Silouan [1866-1938]

  9. #9

    Post Another Photoshop resource

    This site provides some cool tools:

    http://www.terraficta.net/?Welcome

  10. #10
    Guild Member heruca's Avatar
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    I get a Page Not Found screen when clicking on the link in the opening post.
    Looking for cross-platform virtual tabletop software that can be used with any RPG system?
    http://www.battlegroundsgames.com/

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