View unanswered posts | View active topics It is currently Wed Sep 20, 2017 4:14 am



Reply to topic  [ 381 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 ... 26  Next
Drawing a Map 
Author Message
Evil Genius
Evil Genius
User avatar

Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2003 8:02 pm
Posts: 6536
Location: New Jersey
Post Re: Drawing a Map
MODERATOR NOTE: I've split the debate of the economics of mapping in Ravenloft off into a new thread:
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=7978

Let's leave this one as a cartography showcase/technique discussion.

_________________
"We're realistic heroes. We're not here to save the world, just nudge the world into a better place."


Wed Dec 07, 2011 2:37 pm
Profile WWW
Evil Genius
Evil Genius

Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 3:23 pm
Posts: 451
Post Re: Drawing a Map
Here's a map I'm working on for this month's mapping challenge at the Cartographers' Guild - this month's challenge, create a Dragon's Lair.

I've got two days work in this, about 5 hours total so far - almost done. I picture this as a cavern at the base of a cliff along the side of a lake. Inside there's an entrance chamber, a pool chamber, an offal chamber and the dragon's lair/treasury.

I used Xara Xtreme Pro 4 (current software version is Xara Designer Pro 6) which has excellent tools for creating bevels, using photo textures as shape fills, edge feathering and complex transparencies - all used within this map design.

As stated, this is not complete, I just need a few more details in the border verticles, as well as a scale and a grid and then I'm done, but this is close.

Enjoy

Michael

Edit: I added the final version of this map at the bottom and editted the link of full version to the updated final map...

Link to full scale map: Dragon's Lair

Image

Image


Sat Dec 10, 2011 12:55 pm
Profile
Evil Genius
Evil Genius
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 8:12 am
Posts: 1795
Location: Biding my time...
Post Re: Drawing a Map
alhoon wrote:
Lostboy, where you found this awesome textures for grass and mountains? I've been looking for something as nice for my maps for ever.

And yes, it looks awesome.


hmm now you're asking, did this one a good while back... *blows dust off .psd file*

Grass is an actual pic of grass, I bought into photoshop, desaturated and applied a threshold filter - basically turning it just black and white. I then made it a 500x500px pattern and did a pattern fill (35% opacity at 8% scale), set it to multiply and shaded the green colour underneath....whew (sure there must be an easier way). Anyway I've posted the pattern fill online if anyone wants to use it.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff280/fireballjim23/jungle_texture.jpg

Rock Texture is simple, its a product of this tutorial - http://www.webdesign.org/photoshop/textures-patterns/canyon-texture-effect.3265.html

Essentially its a filter>render>clouds then Filters>Brush Stroke>Accented Edges x 3 with the slider settings at 2,38,5 each time, then Image>Adjustments>Invert, finally add a hue/saturation layer to colour as you need.

Jester of the FoS wrote:
I'm more curious about the parchment texture. That's very nice.


Easy just follow Butch Curry - search Youtube for "Fantasy Cartography with Adobe Photoshop" - I think its FCAP vids 1 and 2 which cover the parchment texture.

When I did the EoA netbook I did a different look for the pages, actually taking a real old paper texture from Lost and Taken (I think - google them and search the archives) added some shadows, ripped edges, blood stains and ink splats etc. I've uploaded the pages as jpegs below if anyone wnats them for a book type look.

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff280/fireballjim23/pageleft_blank.jpg (Left Page)

http://i241.photobucket.com/albums/ff280/fireballjim23/pageright_blank.jpg (Right Page)

Cheers

Lostboy

_________________
"I had a dream, which was not all a dream.
The bright sun was extinguish'd, and the stars
Did wander darkling in the eternal space..."


Thu Dec 15, 2011 7:11 am
Profile
Evil Genius
Evil Genius
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 8:12 am
Posts: 1795
Location: Biding my time...
Post Re: Drawing a Map
Oh and awesome maps both Jester and Michael - liking them a lot!

_________________
"I had a dream, which was not all a dream.
The bright sun was extinguish'd, and the stars
Did wander darkling in the eternal space..."


Thu Dec 15, 2011 7:11 am
Profile
Evil Genius
Evil Genius
User avatar

Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2003 8:02 pm
Posts: 6536
Location: New Jersey
Post Re: Drawing a Map
OK, now we've got a map alcove.... hope that makes them easier to find. Contributions welcome!

_________________
"We're realistic heroes. We're not here to save the world, just nudge the world into a better place."


Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:03 pm
Profile WWW
Invisible Menace
Invisible Menace
User avatar

Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2003 6:46 pm
Posts: 7606
Location: Chania or Athens // Greece
Post Re: Drawing a Map
Gonzoron of the FoS wrote:
OK, now we've got a map alcove.... hope that makes them easier to find. Contributions welcome!


Link?
Because I have a trip in front of me, and I think of making a couple of maps (not of the quality you see here, but usable) while on the way.

Lostboy: I don't have photoshop, it costs a fortune. :(
Not to mention the procedure seems a bit streched. But yeap, taking a pic of grass seems... well, it seems good.

_________________
"You truly see what a person is made of, when you begin to slice into them" - Semirhage
"I am not mad, no matter what you're implying." - Litalia
My DMGuild work!


Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:06 pm
Profile
Evil Genius
Evil Genius
User avatar

Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2003 8:02 pm
Posts: 6536
Location: New Jersey
Post Re: Drawing a Map
alhoon wrote:
Gonzoron of the FoS wrote:
OK, now we've got a map alcove.... hope that makes them easier to find. Contributions welcome!


Link?
Because I have a trip in front of me, and I think of making a couple of maps (not of the quality you see here, but usable) while on the way.


http://fraternityofshadows.com/MapAlcove.html

For future reference, whenever I say something like "We now have ____" take a look at the front page: http://fraternityofshadows.com I try to make everything easily findable from there. If the link isn't obvious there, then I've done something wrong, and please let me know. :)

_________________
"We're realistic heroes. We're not here to save the world, just nudge the world into a better place."


Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:48 pm
Profile WWW
Evil Genius
Evil Genius

Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 3:23 pm
Posts: 451
Post Re: Drawing a Map
alhoon wrote:
Gonzoron of the FoS wrote:
OK, now we've got a map alcove.... hope that makes them easier to find. Contributions welcome!


Link?
Because I have a trip in front of me, and I think of making a couple of maps (not of the quality you see here, but usable) while on the way.

Lostboy: I don't have photoshop, it costs a fortune. :(
Not to mention the procedure seems a bit streched. But yeap, taking a pic of grass seems... well, it seems good.


The program I use to create maps is Xara Xtreme Pro 4 (current version is Xara Designer 7) which is basically a vector drawing applications similar to Serif DrawPlus, Adobe Illustrator, or Inkscape - however Xtreme costs about $250, making is substantially less than Adobe products. Despite being a vector drawing application, the program contains powerful tools in working with bitmap images. My last map above uses varying photographic rock textures, water wave texture, etc. However the additional tools for creating complex bevels, shading, edge feathering and complex transparencies is really in a class by itself and haven't seen any other application as easy to use, low memory usage (it doesn't hog your CPU) - thus very fast. Consider most of my maps are creating in one or two days, three at the most; and that's with complex city and world maps, as well as my preferred encounter scale map design.

I actually own many software applications, including most Adobe products, as I run a graphic design/digital print studio for my day job. I use Xara Xtreme as my primary logo design, page layout, sign design in my shop, preferentail to other applications. Because of my extreme familiarity with Xara, despite also having ProFantasy Campaign Cartographer 3, Dundjini and other specifically RPG map software, I use Xara Xtreme Pro for all my maps.

I will admit to being the only professional fantasy cartographer to use Xara Xtreme Pro, though there are a few converts of the amateur level at the Cartographers' Guild that are using it as well.


Wed Dec 21, 2011 2:31 pm
Profile
Invisible Menace
Invisible Menace
User avatar

Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2003 6:46 pm
Posts: 7606
Location: Chania or Athens // Greece
Post Re: Drawing a Map
MichaelTumey wrote:
I actually own many software applications, including most Adobe products, as I run a graphic design/digital print studio for my day job. I use Xara Xtreme as my primary logo design, page layout, sign design in my shop, preferentail to other applications.

I will admit to being the only professional fantasy cartographer to use Xara Xtreme Pro, though there are a few converts of the amateur level at the Cartographers' Guild that are using it as well.


So... you're a pro. That's why your maps seem so good compared to mine. Good to know that I'm not bad, just amateur. :)

_________________
"You truly see what a person is made of, when you begin to slice into them" - Semirhage
"I am not mad, no matter what you're implying." - Litalia
My DMGuild work!


Thu Dec 22, 2011 12:03 am
Profile
Evil Genius
Evil Genius

Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 3:23 pm
Posts: 451
Post Re: Drawing a Map
Amateur is only a status and not a statement as to quality.

While I'm a lifetime gamer (been at it since 1977), I've only been directly involved in the RPG industry as a freelance cartographer for the last 5 years, having done commission maps for Mongoose Publishing, Rite Publishing, Conflict RPG, Dog House Rules, and a number of small and/or brand new small 3pp publishers. I've done concept map design for Paizo Publishing, and of course I do all the maps for Kaidan - my own first venture in creating an Asian horror product line featuring my cartography. I'm a pro because I get paid for it, and sought by RPG publishers because of my reputation and skill.

I know many excellent amateur cartographers that are amateur by choice, not by some measure of skill and imagination.

Alhoon, your maps are exceptional as well, don't cut yourself short! :wink:

Michael


Thu Dec 22, 2011 1:06 am
Profile
Invisible Menace
Invisible Menace
User avatar

Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2003 6:46 pm
Posts: 7606
Location: Chania or Athens // Greece
Post Re: Drawing a Map
Well... I don't have access to such tools like 250$ programs, I just use fractal mapper and some free fills from the internet. I also have far less experience on the matter and I spend far less time on a map since I primarily make them for me and for my players. I.e. if it's pleasing to me, I consider the map done, I don't mess with shadows etc.
So, I doupt I could compare with those amateurs you mention, that have more talent, skill, tools and practice than many professional cartographers. :)

Lostboy from what I've seen makes his own awesome fill patterns and does weird things with transparency, fills, shades etc.

_________________
"You truly see what a person is made of, when you begin to slice into them" - Semirhage
"I am not mad, no matter what you're implying." - Litalia
My DMGuild work!


Thu Dec 22, 2011 1:46 am
Profile
Evil Genius
Evil Genius
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 8:12 am
Posts: 1795
Location: Biding my time...
Post Re: Drawing a Map
alhoon wrote:
Lostboy: I don't have photoshop, it costs a fortune.


True Photoshop is expensive and unless you'll use it a lot or for other things its probably not worth it. I do design and photography alot for my work so I can justify the expense, but appreciate its a big whack of money. However there are several ways round this for much smaller outlay.

You can do 90% of what Photoshop does using GIMP (and its free...) http://www.gimp.org/

Alternatively you can get Photoshop Elements for under £100, this does plenty of what the full PS does but does lack Layer masks which I find the most useful aspect when making maps.

Otherwise trawl Ebay for an old copy of PS7 or later (PS6 is ok but they made a really big leap between those two versions so I'd advise to go for PS7 or above) like this one (One of the bonuses of getting a legit older copy is that you are then eligible to buy cheap upgrades to the newer versions.)

Or if you want it for a finite time you can get a 30 day free trial of Photoshop CS5 at adobe.com and enjoy a month of map making loveliness... :D

alhoon wrote:
Not to mention the procedure seems a bit streched. But yeap, taking a pic of grass seems... well, it seems good.


True, however one of the main things with Photoshop is that; its easy to do things but its hard to make them look really good or like you haven't done it (try removing something from a photo and see what I mean...).

Having said that, the other thing with Photoshop is there isn't always a correct way of doing things. Its so powerful you can replicate an effect by going a number of routes, this one just happens to reflect the odd way my mind works...Others may have quicker and easier methods...

Finally just to say, totally agree with Michael, nothing wrong with being an amateur, hell in terms of map making I'm definitely one. Also he's right your maps are great, we can all improve and learn new techniques and refine our style, but always be proud of what you do, bottom line its making your games better and your PC's will thank you for it!

_________________
"I had a dream, which was not all a dream.
The bright sun was extinguish'd, and the stars
Did wander darkling in the eternal space..."


Thu Dec 22, 2011 5:25 am
Profile
Jester of the Dark Comedy
Jester of the Dark Comedy
User avatar

Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2003 12:19 am
Posts: 4300
Location: A Canadian from Canadia
Post Re: Drawing a Map
I use a second handy copy of photoshop from an uncle who keeps upgrading. Does the job.

_________________
My webcomic & Blog
5 Minute Workday

Ravenloft Maps and other images.


Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:32 pm
Profile
Invisible Menace
Invisible Menace
User avatar

Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2003 6:46 pm
Posts: 7606
Location: Chania or Athens // Greece
Post Re: Drawing a Map
lostboy wrote:

Or if you want it for a finite time you can get a 30 day free trial of Photoshop CS5 at adobe.com and enjoy a month of map making loveliness... :D


I've already used my free trial years ago. :(
I've paid once for Fractal mapper 7, once for FMapper 7 to 8 upgrade and once for CC3. That's the most money I could have spent back then, and I'm in a worse financial situation now. Really, 100 Euro for mapping is way out of my league. Truth be told, I'm jappy with FM8.

_________________
"You truly see what a person is made of, when you begin to slice into them" - Semirhage
"I am not mad, no matter what you're implying." - Litalia
My DMGuild work!


Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:39 pm
Profile
Evil Genius
Evil Genius

Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2011 3:23 pm
Posts: 451
Post Re: Drawing a Map
As Lostboy suggests, get GIMP, it's free - it's basically a lot like Photoshop, doing 90% of what Photoshop can do, and actually does things Photoshop cannot do. Of all the software application used by members of the Cartographers' Guild, I'd say 90% of them use GIMP as their preferred mapping application. GIMP stands for GNU Image Manipulation Software.

Aside from being free and powerful, one of the GIMP mapping tutorials at the CG is the most read tutorial on the site, called: Using GIMP to Create an Artist Regional RPG Map by RobA (the site's assistant Admin). There have been people that never intended to create a map, who just wanted to learn GIMP better that read this tutorial and consider it the best GIMP tutorial on the planet. Note: this tutorial was started in 2007, so it's not using the most recent version of GIMP, however, you can still use it, slightly modified to apply to a current download.

Here's a link to gimp.org for you to download the most recent version of the software - GIMP 2.6

Download it, install it, then visit the link higher up the post and start to learn. Although it is complex like Photoshop, this tut will get you to learn many tools in a very short time, and allow you to create a topdog map from this tutoral alone. There are dozens of other GIMP tutorials on the CG to get you to understand - creating mountains, dungeons, caverns, etc. If you are confused at any point in the tut, just post your question on that same tutorial thread, and RobA or somebody else will point you out on how to do a given step - or anything really (so you'll also have to join the Cartographers' Guild as a member...)

I can recommend no better way to learn RPG mapping than with this tut and software - at a total cost of nothing, except time.

Michael


Thu Dec 22, 2011 10:15 pm
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Reply to topic   [ 381 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 ... 26  Next

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group.
Designed by STSoftware for PTF.