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Thread: Solatus and her Territories

  1. #1
    Guild Apprentice SarahEvelyn's Avatar
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    Map Solatus and her Territories

    Latest commission here, just completed. I can't say I'm entirely happy with it, but I think I probably would need some time away from it before coming back to it again.

    Particularly, I'm still working out how best to color text within colored maps and feel it could really use some work here. If any once has some criticisms or suggestions, I'd greatly appreciate hearing them. Thanks everyone!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by SarahEvelyn; 06-18-2019 at 09:23 PM.

  2. #2
    Guild Expert Kellerica's Avatar
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    I really love this style. Your mountains are beautiful, and I especially adore that gorgeous compass rose. The colors are maybe a tad too mellow for my taste, but I'm usually a sucker for super dark themes, so feel free to pay me no mind in this matter

    As for the text colorization, the map is honestly a bit too slow in resolution for me to comment on it, as I can't really make out the smaller labels. The thing I do like, is how you have the gentle U-curves on some of the labels when called for, but you aren't curving labels when you don't need to. Some people seem to feel obligated to curve every single label if they have to do it once, and it often looks a bit restless to my eye. Here you have a nice balance of straight lines and curves. Good call!

    But in general, I don't think there is really any one advice that works every time on that matter - every map is different, and what looks good on one might look terrible on another.

    My own basic rules for labels usually are that

    1) in surprisingly many instances white/some other light color works better than black/dark text,

    and 2) usually my preferred colors will not be black or white, but something that sits within the color theme of the map itself. Very dark red text on brown land, a light blue on top of a deep blue ocean, that kind of thing. (the Color Overlay Layer effect in PS is a godsend, because it makes you able to make adjustments to the shade very easily. The current CC version even lets you stack multiple Overlays on top of each other, so it's easy to compare different colors)

    I want my labels to look like they are part of the map, not just something that sits on top of it, if that makes any sense.

    Usually I prefer soft, subtle Outer Glows rather than large and thick ones. Stroke and Drop Shadows are something a lot of people use, but I practically never do. Even when I want a dark shade to make a light label pop, I'll use Outer Glow rather than a Drop Shadow. It's just more easily adjusted, IMO.

    One useful trick I've learned, if you are using PS, is that you can add your labels into one Layer Folder, give that folder the Layer Style you want, AND then add that folder into another folder, giving you the ability to add yet another Layer Style on top of the ones you already have in place. This is particularly useful if you have a thin Outer Glow on the labels just to make them stand out more (like the white you seem to have in place here), then you can use the second style to give an additonal, softer Glow outside of that, in the shade of the map terrain beneath the label. Very easy and hassle-free way of making the lineart beneath the text look a bit more faded without having to hide the actual linework.

    That's just some general ideas about labels on the top of my head. I don't know if any of this will be useful to you (do you even use PS?), but at least something to think about.

    Once more, a beautiful little map, I'm really enjoying seeing the work you've posted so far. Nice to have a new-ish member becoming more active on the Guild, always room for new talent! I can't rep you right now, but would if I could.
    Last edited by Kellerica; 06-19-2019 at 05:26 AM.
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  3. #3

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    I confirm what I thought with your precedent map : great style, great colors, great textures, and I'm 100% convinced with it.
    Regarding the labels, the Arinean Sea catch my eye a little too much for some reason : I would either move it, or rotate it a little bit. But it's really, really super nitpicking

    Edit : Uh... can't rep you yet ! So sad !!

  4. #4

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    It's an attractive map. The compass rose is quite nice. I can't quite make out the labels at this scale so I'm afraid I can't comment on them. The redish brown mountains are nicely done as well. Great work.

    Cheers,
    -Arsheesh

  5. #5
    Guild Apprentice SarahEvelyn's Avatar
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    Wow, thank you so much Kellerica. Your text ideas are very insightful, and I'm humbled that you took the time to write all that out for me!

    Sorry, I didn't realize the rez was quite so low. I just replaced it with a larger version. Thank you for the support.

  6. #6
    Guild Apprentice SarahEvelyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MistyBeee View Post
    I confirm what I thought with your precedent map : great style, great colors, great textures, and I'm 100% convinced with it.
    Regarding the labels, the Arinean Sea catch my eye a little too much for some reason : I would either move it, or rotate it a little bit. But it's really, really super nitpicking

    Edit : Uh... can't rep you yet ! So sad !!
    That's alright, thank you though! I think I see what you mean with the sea label. I think there are a few other elements I'd probably adjust composition for as well in future.

  7. #7
    Guild Apprentice SarahEvelyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arsheesh View Post
    It's an attractive map. The compass rose is quite nice. I can't quite make out the labels at this scale so I'm afraid I can't comment on them. The redish brown mountains are nicely done as well. Great work.

    Cheers,
    -Arsheesh

    Thanks very much! Heh...yeah, I didn't realize the upload was such low resolution, but I've replaced it with a larger version. Thanks for taking a look!

  8. #8
    Community Leader Bogie's Avatar
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    Really nice map! Keep up the good work!

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