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Thread: Making Fractal lines in GIMP

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    Guild Novice Cool as a Cucumber's Avatar
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    Post Making Fractal lines in GIMP, Photoshop, or PaintNET

    I'm looking for some sort of tool for GIMP, Photoshop, or PaintNET (that last one is unlikely) that will allow me to make a randomized line or perhaps even a randomized shape that looks like topography. I created a map in Fractal Mapper 8 (seen here) that utilizes these sorts of tools which was great for my concept, but actually making it look pretty is something the program is not very good at.

    Ideally I want to make the borders glow (like this) as well, but I'm also going to need to put rivers on the map as well as make other modifications. I took a look at the GIMP tutorials, but none of them mentioned a randomized line tool like what I need.
    Last edited by Cool as a Cucumber; 07-12-2009 at 04:26 PM.

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      Gandwarf is offline
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    So I can't actually help you... but welcome to the Guild. And your name rocks
    Check out my City Designer 3 tutorials. See my fantasy (city) maps in this thread.

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    Guild Novice Cool as a Cucumber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gandwarf View Post
    So I can't actually help you... but welcome to the Guild. And your name rocks
    Well since you liked my name so much I went ahead and put on my avatar too.

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      Gandwarf is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cool as a Cucumber View Post
    Well since you liked my name so much I went ahead and put on my avatar too.
    Oh man. Please stay on our forum
    Someone help him!
    Check out my City Designer 3 tutorials. See my fantasy (city) maps in this thread.

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      Redrobes is offline
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    Yeah that avatar is the best. Certainly now that Arcana changed from the Black Metal god... hah.

    Right, well I am no Gimp expert but I think it can render a filter of clouds and then you just do a contrast stretch to black and white and that gets you a random shape. There is also my free app instant Islands which does this sort of thing...

    http://www.viewing.ltd.uk/cgi-bin/vi...nstant_islands

    The brute force way is to create a small - say 32x32 bit of greyscale noise map and then upsample it to 64x64, smooth it slightly and then add a little bit more noise and then upsample to 128x128 and keep repeating that until its big enough. You can tweak it at any stage by hinting it lighter or darker as required.

    In Gimp there is also supposed to be some kind of render random map mode too where it paints the land in green and the sea in blue too. All with one click.

    To glow the border the usual method is to take the land and mega blur it. Then add back in the land again. So get the land in the glow color with sea being the same as the normal land map. Mega blur it and then select just the land from the original and paste over the blurred one at the same coords as it was in before.

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    Guild Novice Cool as a Cucumber's Avatar
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    I'm not sure I quite understand how to glow the borders like you described, but I'm guessing this mega blur thing yields bolder edges than other blurs and I need to use layers and opacity?

    Anyway, pertaining to the terrain stuff, the issue I'm having isn't generating terrain - I'm already able to do that easily with Fractal Mapper 8. It's generating topographic lines (not shapes) for rivers and borders in GIMP or Photoshop.

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      Redrobes is offline
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    I was waiting for something so I knocked off a few images. This is for the rand terrain. Ok so its quick and dirty and the amounts of noise need to be tweaked down a bit cos its a bit over the top. I'll do the glow in a mo...

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      Redrobes is offline
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    Heres quickie steps. Start with some terrain, generate glow colored version, blur it a lot, select original land and paste on top. Again, this is my super quick attempt and probably needs more finesse but thats it basically.

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    Guild Novice Cool as a Cucumber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redrobes View Post
    Heres quickie steps. Start with some terrain, generate glow colored version, blur it a lot, select original land and paste on top. Again, this is my super quick attempt and probably needs more finesse but thats it basically.
    Oh, I see. Actually, I was looking to make the glow to be inside the borders like in the picture I linked, not outside. That's why I was confused.

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      Redrobes is offline
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    Same process but cut out the sea and paste back on instead of the land so that the glow goes into the land instead.

    I think you need to do this on layers and mask each region out one by one and add in the glow a little at the end. But yeah its basically take the shape, blur it, mask out off the shape so that your left with just the blur that went into it and put in as a layer. Maybe multiply it with a constant color like red to get a red glow.
    Last edited by Redrobes; 07-12-2009 at 05:34 PM.

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