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Ways of new art

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X3M
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Joined: 10/28/2013

I noticed a topic about hand drawn art.
Thought this might be a solution for me. But I will have to learn it myself.
The problem is that I have "cut out" seamless pictures doing the job for me. But the edges between 2 pictures are often really ugly. And some are still not usefull (swamps).

My first and only goal would be drawning land art. Something like what you can see in Advanced Squad Leader.

While I already have some stuff drawn myself. I am a real amateur (like a 10 or less year old, while I am beyond 30 now). How can I raise my skills that I can be a bit happy about it?

I want to draw basic landscapes.
To draw (everything from top):
Tree's (Forest)
Dessert
Snow
Mountains
Water
Roads
Grasslands

All 7 in the same style. So I don't need to borrow anything any more from the internet.

***

The second stage would be scanning some basic pictures. And edit them in such a way that they would be new sheets to add to one main picture. Thus a map is formed from basic colours.
I have 28 now, but this is confusing and a lot of work. If possible, like only 10 colours would be a good outcome for me.

Thus I make a basic map with colours. And these colours are replaced by the art that is scanned by me.

***

Another way would be making the entire map by pen. While using a blanc print with the regions. And copy this map after scanning when needed.

questccg
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Digital Composition

What you need as a "novice" artist with some basic skills is to use "Digital Composition". What the hell does that mean?! Let me explain.

Basically instead of having to draw ONE (1) PERFECT picture, you draw portions of a picture and then use a computer to MERGE them together. What this does is allow more room for imperfections because as the artist you are probably not sufficiently skilled to draw the whole scene AT ONCE.

Composition allows you to break down the image into layers and focus on one layer at a time.

I'm not a great artist either - but I use composition when design card layout and I know other designers with better skills that use this same technique to "enhance" existing stock images.

Like say your picture is of a lake with a mountain in the background. First you start with the mountain and sky. Then you work on the forest that is in front of the mountain and lastly you draw the lake and the objects at the front such as trees on the side...

Then combine all those images in Photoshop (or Paintshop Pro, etc.) one layer at a time and you can TWEAK the layers by scaling (10% example) or moving the mountain more to the center, etc. And you continue for all the layers.

This will probably give you a better rendition than if you had to DRAW the WHOLE image in one pass...

Try it out! Let me know if it works for you...

X3M
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Joined: 10/28/2013
My last project

Well, I have tree's and I have tree's.
My last project went like this:

The first tree's. Are simply a photo of seemless tree's viewed from the top. I have this basic layer that has colours in paint. A cloudy map would be the best description. In a way, I do compile pictures together.

I apply the seemless foto's to each of the colours.
Dark green has these tree's.
Light green would be for example grass.

Thus if I want to picture a map with a lot of grass, then a couple of tree's and eventually a big forest. I start with this basic map.

I make the background light green (instead of ticking every little cloud)
Then I start replacing some light green with dark green. A single tree would be a little irregular hexagon. The lines are "wavy". To indicate the randomness of a shape. Each region however has the same format. And is almost entirely mirrored to itself as well.

When all is done. I get a picture that starts looking like a map. However, the light grey helping lines need to be removed. Darker objects first, by light grey/dark green switch filling. Eventually, compiled clouds don't have the grey lines any more.
I then copy paste the entire picture into the seemless topview photo's. Thus applying a real texture to the map entirely.

With only gras and forrest, I only need to apply this twice.
There is a maximum of 28. Which is troublesome since paint itself only allows for 16 direct colours.

Lastly I add some height markers.

If you pm me your email. I can send in a map that I have in my email. Than you can take a look at it and comment. (Already taking note of mistakes and ugly stuff, so no harm if you burn me there, but at least you know where I am stationed right now)

***

[seemless pictures are all top view photos]

It looks awfull right now, even worse than before :D
O well, stepping stones means you need to do step backwards.

During this process I noticed that having simple colours often looks better. Somehow a childlish drawing looks so much better. So I thougt of having things drawn instead. And I can paste these little pictures into the map. Instead of having to tick clouds into colour.

In the past I did this too. But then I used seemless pictures to compile regions with smaller object. This was much more work than my last project. And it looked systematic instead of natural.

My last resort would be making objects again with the seemless pictures. But then paste them separately into the bigger picture. If I am really happy with every object, this could work. However, I figured I might as well be drawing them from scratch and make them look hand drawn. At least, the combinations would not "curse"?

gilamonster
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Joined: 08/21/2015
I'll send you an email; I'd

I'll send you an email; I'd like to see what you've done and might be able to help a little.

Also, have a look at this:
:
http://www.cartographersguild.com

I just came across it a few minutes ago while googling to find out something related to generating hex-gridded maps. It looks as if it has some interesting tutorials, although I haven't had a chance to look through them yet.

X3M
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I have replied. You had some

I have replied. You had some interesting pointers already. Without even seeing the picture.

Edit:

I ehm.. just looked at http://www.cartographersguild.com
They sure have grown big.

Hook
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Joined: 09/22/2014
landscape map art

There are so many roads to take on this and the scale you are making it all in is important. If you look at architect drawings they often use a loose (childish) hand on the pen - making the lines be rugged. And architects rarely fill out (I know this is a generalisation) every grass, brick or leaf - but scatter small clusters all around to indicate the "terrain".

Also look at comic book artists how they can paint all kinds of landscapes with black ink only. Or manga artists like Jiro Taniguchi.

I would try working on a lineart map maybe only with "raytraced"/hard shadows to create you terrain. Then apply colors later - how many color's you wan't but try to use only a main color and a shadow color on each object and ALWAYS use colors that are desaturated to begin with (only have few saturated objects). I would not make any textures until this map is already looking good. But but this is all very hard to guide on through text :-)

Think also what kind of feeling you want the map to convey. Hard, techy even futuristic - dark and gloomy or happy and fairytale like, etc.

X3M
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Joined: 10/28/2013
Happy to send you an email as

Happy to send you an email as well, with some explanation text.

If it is even one new thing that I can learn. I would be very happy.

Arcuate
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Joined: 02/05/2016
Grey helping lines

Hopefully you already realise this, but any "helping lines" or grids/templates should be in a separate digital layer so you can click them on or off or even fiddle with the transparency of the guidelines.

questccg
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landscape map art

You may want to look at this Fiverr's samples, I'm sure you could negotiate something with this lady:

https://www.fiverr.com/renflowergrapx

I think her MAPS look awesome, but I'm betting she could probably draw villages and castles (obviously all from a top-view perspective). I actually see one "castle" in one of her maps.

Anyhow, it's just a lead.

I kept it - because when I found it, I figured I might need such a map in the future (for some kind of Fantasy game).

If only to look at the pretty pictures! ;)

X3M
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Arcuate wrote:Hopefully you

Arcuate wrote:
Hopefully you already realise this, but any "helping lines" or grids/templates should be in a separate digital layer so you can click them on or off or even fiddle with the transparency of the guidelines.

I even have 3 layers.
One remains and gets the colours/textures.
The other two replace one another and the second dissappears.

However, programs like paint need a weird manual removement. But here the lines have a practical use.
Yet other programs have these layers as helping lines while you manually add things. They where less practical for me.

However, through some emails. I think that those helping lines by Gimp or another program are going to be useful again to me.

questccg wrote:
You may want to look at this Fiverr's samples, I'm sure you could negotiate something with this lady:

https://www.fiverr.com/renflowergrapx

I think her MAPS look awesome, but I'm betting she could probably draw villages and castles (obviously all from a top-view perspective). I actually see one "castle" in one of her maps.

Anyhow, it's just a lead.

I kept it - because when I found it, I figured I might need such a map in the future (for some kind of Fantasy game).

If only to look at the pretty pictures! ;)

Appreciated.
But I need to do this myself. I learn from it. And I am not planning on spending money or earning money with it. Besides, with an "ever" changing game I might throw the entire concept overboard again.

And I need to spit out maps in a fast rate. Same concept as ASL.

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