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Thread: [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp

  1. #21
      torstan is offline
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    Now we repeat the same process for all the different areas of the map. It's worth using a new overlay layer ofr each section. It can be useful to be able to turn on/off different overlay layers to see what's going on. Equally, it can be useful to drop down the opacity of an overlay layer - yes dropping the opacity of an overlay layer just reduces its effect on the layers below it.

    As you work on more fine details, drop down your brush size and maybe go to a hard edged brush. Also, try using the paint tools for lightening and darkening your overlay layer rather than sticking to dodge/burn. For example, if you need a bright highlight, you may need the to have an overlay tone of 90% grey (#e4e4e4). Getting to that with dodge will take a lot of working in. However, you can just go straight to that with the colour picker and draw in a sharp highlight using the paint tools. This is a good way of defining sharp edges.

    I try to edit the overlay layers whilst they have their modes set to overlay. That way you are seeing the effect your modifications are having on the image as you go along. Don't forget that it is easy to smooth out a hard shadow or highlight using the smudge tool.

    Here are the three further overlay layers that exist in my challenge entry.

    The sail area:
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-overlayexample1.jpg

    The rocks:
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-overlayexample3.jpg

    and the deck:
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-overlayexample2.jpg
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  2. #22
      torstan is offline
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    The effect of applying these overlay layers in turn is:

    Sails
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-withsailoverlay.jpg

    Rocks
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-withrockoverlay.jpg

    Deck
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-withdeckoverlay.jpg

    Note that drawing the shadows isn't exact. The overlay layers are often very ropey (note the sail layer!). However the fact that these aren't super smooth and finished adds to the hand-drawn feel (well I tell that to myself anyway).

    As for creating decent shadows and highlights, I have to say I am guilty of a few standard tricks. I always draw the light from the NW corner. Shadows that are close to the object casting them are often sharp. Shadows further away from the object casting them are more blurred. Note the shadow cast by the fallen main mast across the deck as an example. Finally, if you want to draw attention to a specific feature, make the shadows and highlights more exaggerated and crisp - it will draw the eye of the viewer.

    Right - that's it for highlights and shadows. We're almost there now.
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  3. #23
      torstan is offline
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    Now the final stage is to put in little details. In this case I wanted to put in the remains of the ropes that led up the masts, and put some ripples on the waves.

    For the waves I created a new transparent layer, selected the lightest sea colour from the City Colours palette I mentioned earlier and drew lots of rippling lines. This looked pretty poor initially as the ripples were jsut flat blue. I then switched the blend mode to soft light and the ripples softened into the picture nicely.

    The ropes were done in a similar fashion - drawn in white using the ink tool on to a transparent layer:
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-ropes.jpg

    They are obviously completely overpowering! I changed the layer blend mode to soft light and dropped the opacity to 40%:
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-ropes2.jpg

    Much better. With the sea highlights added in a similar way we get to the final version!
    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-final.jpg

    Right, if you've made it through all of that and you aren't confused then you deserve a medal. I hope this makes sense. If there are any points at which you get stuck (and I'm sure there will be - I didn't exactly craft this carefully before posting) please ask and I'll do my best to answer.
    Fantasy Map Blog | My food illustration
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  4. #24
    Guild Master Gracious Donor Midgardsormr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by torstan View Post
    So to block in some light areas we need to lighten the overlay layer away from 50% grey. Now we could do this by laying down a lighter grey with the paint tools, but I find it easier to use the dodge/burn tool on the grey layer. There's a good reason for this, but I won't go into it here unless people are interested.
    I'm interested!
    Bryan Ray, visual effects artist
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  5. #25
      torstan is offline
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    Okay, had a moment to sit down and think about this properly. The quick answer is that it just seems to work better and it gives me results that I like. Obviously that's not the 'better' reason I alluded to.

    The reason is that the dodge and burn tools move the shade of the area they are applied to up or down from their current value whereas if you lay down a strip of a different colour with the paint tools it just gives a line of that colour. Obviously you can use the airbrush tool so that it only lays down a light opacity of that colour - which is close to the effect of the dodge/burn tools. To see the difference I did a little test:

    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-dodgeburn2.jpg

    Now you can see that when I use dodge to lighten the mid-grey, it has roughly the same effect as using the white to lighten it. Equally, when I use the black to darken the mid grey, the results are comparable. However, the interesting result is where the two overlap. In the case of the airbrush, drawing over a white region with the black gives me a black line, darker than the mid-grey I started with, and much darker than the white. In the case of the dodge/burn tools, when I draw over the dodged area with the burn tool it darkens the tone it is applied to. In this case that tone is lighter than mid grey, so the burn tool moves it back towards mid grey.

    Essentially the difference is that the paint tools are absolute. When you paint a black line, it lays down black, no matter what the underlying colour is. You can make the black less opaque so that its effect is less pronounced, but what you are painting knows nothing about the colours that are already there. In contrast, the dodge/burn tools are relative. They take the value that exists already and shifts it. This depends entirely on what is already there. I find that the second method gives smoother shadows and lighting than the first, and is more forgiving of a more quick and dirty approach to laying down light and shade.

    Oh, here's the effect of the layer I posted above when applied to a textured layer. You can see that the black I painted on the overlay layer (on the right hand side) is very pronounced, whereas the area which was burned and then dodged is pretty subtle.

    [Award Winner] Drawing hand drawn maps in Gimp-dodgeburn3.jpg

    I hope that makes sense?
    Last edited by torstan; 06-20-2008 at 11:59 AM.
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  6. #26
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by torstan View Post
    Okay, had a moment to sit down and think about this properly. The quick answer is that it just seems to work better and it gives me results that I like. Obviously that's not the 'better' reason I alluded to.

    The reason is that the dodge and burn tools move the shade of the area they are applied to up or down from their current value whereas if you lay down a strip of a different colour with the paint tools it just gives a line of that colour. Obviously you can use the airbrush tool so that it only lays down a light opacity of that colour - which is close to the effect of the dodge/burn tools. To see the difference I did a little test:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	dodgeBurn2.jpg 
Views:	210 
Size:	17.5 KB 
ID:	4489

    Now you can see that when I use dodge to lighten the mid-grey, it has roughly the same effect as using the white to lighten it. Equally, when I use the black to darken the mid grey, the results are comparable. However, the interesting result is where the two overlap. In the case of the airbrush, drawing over a white region with the black gives me a black line, darker than the mid-grey I started with, and much darker than the white. In the case of the dodge/burn tools, when I draw over the dodged area with the burn tool it darkens the tone it is applied to. In this case that tone is lighter than mid grey, so the burn tool moves it back towards mid grey.

    Essentially the difference is that the paint tools are absolute. When you paint a black line, it lays down black, no matter what the underlying colour is. You can make the black less opaque so that its effect is less pronounced, but what you are painting knows nothing about the colours that are already there. In contrast, the dodge/burn tools are relative. They take the value that exists already and shifts it. This depends entirely on what is already there. I find that the second method gives smoother shadows and lighting than the first, and is more forgiving of a more quick and dirty approach to laying down light and shade.

    Oh, here's the effect of the layer I posted above when applied to a textured layer. You can see that the black I painted on the overlay layer (on the right hand side) is very pronounced, whereas the area which was burned and then dodged is pretty subtle.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	dodgeBurn3.jpg 
Views:	195 
Size:	32.8 KB 
ID:	4491

    I hope that makes sense?

    Good explanation Torstan. This is exactly the type of techniques I have been using on my mountains drawn with RobA's technique Making Mountains in GIMP BEFORE running my Bumpmap to get some of the colors spread out and make the slopes seem much more "ridgier" rather than just straight slope lines as can be seen here: http://www.cartographersguild.com/at...1&d=1213922624


    At least for me, this produces a very nice result and gives nice a mountain ridge without looking plasticy. I also go back over the dodge/burn stuff with a fuzzy edge smudge brush to decrease the hardness of the lines so the bumpmap does not get ugly looking. I could do this all with just the smudge brush, BUT it takes a LOT more time and again, it's easy to get bad looking bump maps so this combo seems to be the fastest way for me.

    Joe
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    Explanation of Layer Masks in GIMP
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  7. #27
      Ascension is offline
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    Wonderful explanation of the tools. It's like, "oh, yeah I knew this but then again I didn't". It's there in the back of the brain and this helps to bring it forward. Thank you.

  8. #28
    Guild Master Gracious Donor Midgardsormr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by torstan View Post
    I hope that makes sense?
    It makes lots of sense. Thanks very much! To be honest, I wasn't really sure what the dodge and burn tools were actually doing. I'll certainly be adopting that strategy the next time I attempt shaded relief. For my current try, I just used an airbrush, and while I got pretty good results, I think it could have been far easier.
    Bryan Ray, visual effects artist
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  9. #29
      torstan is offline
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    I'm glad that helped. Thanks for the rep.

    Would it be useful to have a couple of .xcf files (Gimp equivalent of psd) of these maps to show how they were put together?
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  10. #30
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by torstan View Post
    i'm Glad That Helped. Thanks For The Rep.

    Would It Be Useful To Have A Couple Of .xcf Files (gimp Equivalent Of Psd) Of These Maps To Show How They Were Put Together?


    Yes! Yes! Yes!
    My Finished Maps
    Works in Progress(or abandoned tests)
    My Tutorials:
    Explanation of Layer Masks in GIMP
    How to create ISO Mountains in GIMP/PS using the Smudge tool
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    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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