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Thread: The first of my continents

  1. #1
    Guild Artisan Gracious Donor LonewandererD's Avatar
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    Post The first of my continents

    Hey guys, i'm new here and after struggling to finish my maps for a while now i now see that i need help.

    Here is Adallia, the first of three continents for my fantasy realm The Everlandias. I've got the territories and idea for the environments all sorted out but i can't seem to get the thing coloured.

    I want it to seem to be a big, vast continent and realistic. C&C would help...

    NOTE: I use PS Elements 6 and a mouse. Sorry about the size.
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    Community Leader Gracious Donor ravells's Avatar
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    Hi Lonelywanderer - that's a really nice start.

    One easy way to colour the map is to just overlay lots of textures on top of each other in new layers. Use a soft eraser at varying opacities (I dont' think you have layer masks in elements) to let the textures you want to show through. Make sure you play with the blending modes and the opacities of the layers themselves as well.

    To make a map appear huge, you'll need to make it very detailed (large resolution required) and it helps the illusion if you have lots of labels. Do a search on the forum for Bohunk's maps, he's a real master at creating the illusion of massive areas of land.

    Just shout if you need any more help / elaboration.

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    Community Leader Facebook Connected Ascension's Avatar
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    I'm not sure what sort of options are available to you in Elements but I'd make sure that you always have the "land" as a separate layer with the surrounding ocean being clear. That way you can always create a selection and do the painting (greens, tans, etc) on a new layer using the land selection so that you don't paint into the ocean...also use a low opacity airbrush so that you can continually build up the color instead of plopping down a big chunk of green with sharp edges.

    Also, my tutorials have all been designed for Photoshop but I know that some people have created some work-arounds to adapt them into Elements so you might want to give that a try. I'm always here to answer questions (well, off and on during the evenings) to try and help you with adapting what you use with what I teach and then those who have used PSE should also be around to answer questions.
    If the radiance of a thousand suns was to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One...I am become Death, the Shatterer of worlds.
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    Guild Artisan Gracious Donor LonewandererD's Avatar
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    yo guys, thanks for the feedback, i now know i've come to the right place

    @ravells - I'm defiantely going to look up Bohunk' stuff, i've seen a few of them and they are amazing, the kind of things i'm looking for

    @ascension - I have downloaded some of your tutorials, i just haven't had time to sit down and read them yet but your tut on adding noise to terrain helped me solve one of my problems, thnx. I always work in layers, i learned that very early on and do use an airbrush to avoid sharp edges. I've found that adjusting the opacity tends to make it abit too... soft. Its all good but i want my map to look like it is a warmer place, its right on my worlds equator, so i want it to be a bit more vibrant, and bit more lively, y'know

    Again, thanks for the feedback guys

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    Guild Artisan Gracious Donor LonewandererD's Avatar
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    Only after trying to work my way through elements 6 did my father reveal that he has a copy of CS3, grrrr.

    Anyways i now have a coloured map that i'm content with. Many thanks to Ascension for his great tutorial without which this map would not have been completed. It doesn't look as good as Ascension's map but i think it turned out alright. I still need to tidy up bits and pieces but this will do for now.

    Any, heres my map. Any feedback would be most welcomed. I need some encourage for i weep at the prospect of creating two more continents that are even larger than Adallia.

    Again, sorry about the size.

    -D-
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    Community Leader Facebook Connected Ascension's Avatar
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    First off, I think it looks very unique and kinda cool...the noise gives it this feel. I'm not wild about the red labels, the white ones look good though so maybe try a dark gray instead of red or maybe a brown, I dunno. The rivers are quite odd in that they circle around, split off to the ocean, etc. Rivers start out in the mountains all split up and then join as they reach the plains.

    So basically the only real thing that needs tweaking is the rivers and you could leave the rest if you like. I'd certainly like to see the other continents so keep up the good fight.
    If the radiance of a thousand suns was to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One...I am become Death, the Shatterer of worlds.
    -J. Robert Oppenheimer (father of the atom bomb) alluding to The Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 11, Verse 32)


    My Maps ~ My Brushes ~ My Tutorials ~ My Challenge Maps

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    Guild Artisan Gracious Donor LonewandererD's Avatar
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    hey, thanks for the kind words Ascension but those other two maps will be a long time coming, i don't even have a basic shape for them, just ideas.

    The noise turned out a bit wierd when i uploaded it, it isn't that noticeable on my copy. The noise and the extra layer of green was supposed to represent heavy tree cover as Adallia is a heavely forested continent.

    Now when you say ref labels, do you mean the country labels or the smaller red star labels? I'll try to fix the rivers its just that working so small bugs me and i sort of rushed through it without really thinking.

    -D-

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    Community Leader Facebook Connected Steel General's Avatar
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    For me it's never a good idea of have red text on a largly green background.

    While yours isn't bad, if you're going to keep the red then be sure to put a similar stroke/border around the labels on the land like you did for the sea, though you may need to experiment with the colors some.

    As for the rest of the map, other than the river infractions Ascension already mentioned I think the only real nit-pick I have is the sudden transition between terrain types. Never used PS-Elements so not sure if it has and blur/blend options.

    Keep up the good work will be looking forward to your other maps.
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    Guild Artisan Gracious Donor LonewandererD's Avatar
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    yeah, i'm going to change the red labels to something a little easier to read

    @Steel General - I just changed to Photoshop CS3 and so now have access to blend options. I really want to gwt rid of the noticeable transition between terrains so is there any particular blend option you would recommend for this or should i just go nuts and experiment?

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    Community Leader Facebook Connected Steel General's Avatar
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    You have a couple of options...

    I use either Guassian Blur or a Layer Masks - Either would work but I would highly suggest you try and learn how the layer masks work (if you don't already know). They will give you much more control over things.
    My Finished Maps | My Challenge Maps | Ghoraja Juun, my largely stagnated campaign setting.

    Unless otherwise stated by me in the post, all work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.



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