Really great Don,
Thanks a lot. I will be sure to use it and soon, cause My player are starting the Skinsaw murderer adventure and I think a little mosaic map in one of the catacomb could be good for future adventure.
I thought I would have been harder to do… Maybe I will also try my map into a mosaic.
Each day, I love our guild more and more.
Brilliant Don - this tutorial will be one of the site's crown jewels.
Here's my effort - blatant rip-off, just playing with GIMP. I didn't bother with most of the detail stuff, though I added a stroke around the continents.
Also attached is the brush I created to facilitate this.
I was able to follow the tutorial quite closely, with a few exceptions....
1) Gimp does not stroke along a selection well with an angular animated brush like this one. It is better to keep converting the selections into a path, then stroking the path (don't know why....)
2) No colour jitter. I got around that by creating a fairly busy gradient of the colours I wanted (or pick a pre-set) and check the "use colour from gradient" box in the pen tool.
3) I was WAY too lazy to do the expanding circle thing, so I just created a spiral in inkscape (one drawing object), converted it to a path and imported it into GIMP.
4) As always, the layer effects don't translate, as GIMP doesn't have them. I create a 50% greyscale layer, bumpmap it with the source image, and adjust the curves with necessary, applying it in overlay mode to accomplish a similar effect.
I think that turned out quite well, Rob! Nicely done! I'm sure our GIMP users will be overjoyed with your instructions and brush. Very cool.
Also note that instead of (or in addition to) the gradients, one could simply draw with a low opacity darker color overtop the originally laid tiles; that would simulate the color variations nicely, too.
Thanks for doing this. I'm going to change the title of the thread to include GIMP, too. :)
I think there is a bit too much uniformity in the straight runs, as the brush spacing doesn't randomize. This is most noticeable on the right hand side where the vertical row of tiles exists. This could be improved if I changed the brush scaling manually between successive strokes, in much the same way I changed the gradient pattern repeat between strokes.
I agree. Another option is skewing the finished runs of tile; does GIMP have any kind of liquify or warp tools?
Many. I think the closest to liquefy is i-warp (I think it is short for interactive warp). This tends to distort the tiles as well, however. Best, I think, to address it at source.
So I had some inspiration the other night, and came up with another (and I think simpler) way to do to the initial tile laying in GIMP, since "recording actions" in GIMP actually requires some scripting/programming...
Starting with the land mass blocked out
Create a selection. Fill this with a shaped gradient (in gimp I used shaped, angular) made of alternating black and white bars. To do this in GIMP actually requires defining a new gradient, (which is easy enough, and I'll provide the steps if someone wants) with the desired number of solid black and white bands. (IIR, in photoshop you can just "scale" the gradient when applying it and set repeat "on".) Eventually, we will end up stroking along every black/white edge. in the image.
Now here's where I compensate for the "straightness" problem I had. Create a new layer and fill it with turbulent clouds. Now perform a displacement map on the striped layer using the turbulent clouds. Here I used a moderate 3 px x and y. (In photoshop, IIR, you have to save the turbulent layer out to a file before using it for a displacement map.) The image here shows the result along with the the displacement map I used.
Using the colour select tool, select all the black to get a selection (0 tolerance), expand it by 1 pixel and then turn the selection into a stroke.
Now stroke the path (with the brush I provided if using gimp). Here I also used the stoke with gradient option checked:
I'm not going further with this, it was just to show another technique to get the tiles laid out. It still needs a bit of manual touch up in narrow areas and sharply angled parts of the image, but it worked fairly well.
I joined up for this, after seeing your map at DeviantArt.
I'm not an artist at all, in fact I'm a programmer without a lick of photoshop skill. We're working on an RPG at work right now, so on a sick day I did some searching for fantasy maps, and found a link to your DA profile. It's a fantastic tutorial, and I dont care what the artists at work may say, I'm finding a way to get this into the game we're working on.
This took about 3 hours. I avoided any complexity on the border, the scuffs don't really work because the map isn't meant to be very old, and missed out your little pictures, but I still think it turned out great despite my crappy art skills.
After spending yesterday afternoon working on this, the whole exercise led me to Zombie Nirvana's great tutorials and I've overnight become quite the map lover. You have alot to answer for!
RobA: You are a genius, my friend! That took care of the problems and vaulted the map to the next level. Well done! Wow--very inventive solution. I don't know how you do that voodoo that you do so well!
Funso: Holy cow, nice work! I am so glad you found the tutorial useful, and I'm also glad you made this wonderful example of a mosaic tile map, but moreover I'm ecstativ that I roped an unsuspecting computer programmer into an appreciation of maps! That's just awesome! You made my day. I hope you will stick around the Guild and share with us your story (in the Member Introductions) as well as whatever maps you create. Thanks again for posting this!