• creating fantasy maps
    Fantasy Map Making

    Fantasy World building: Making an Abandoned Island Map

    You can only deny inspiration for so long  While updating The Unburned Island,  a voice whispered in my ear to add a map. In Making a Fantasy Town Map: Behind the Scenes, I wrote about making a  map for book 2, The Wailing Town. But, I had no intention of doing the same thing for book 1. As always, the voice would not be silenced. At this point, I honestly didn’t try to hard to shut it up. I’ve fought this battle before and I never win.  Looks like I’m making a map for Book 1. Recently, I discovered that Shutterstock has a lot of map vectors. I decided to do…

  • creating fantasy maps
    Fantasy Map Making,  Merging Worlds Series

    Work in Progress: Fantasy Map-Making

    Sorin, the dead land. The province no one visits unless their desperate or corrupt. Years ago, I created 7 maps for my Merging Worlds series. In Book 2: Chains of the Sciell, characters started mentioning places in overseas lands. It was time to include a world map in the book.   I created each land in a separate document and then added them to the world map once they were finished. It was probably the harder way to go about things but it was a fun project. I’m glad I designed it that way now. Most of the Merging Worlds series has taken place on Jael. I will admit, I…

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    Fantasy Map Making,  Fantasy World Building,  Merging Worlds Series

    Behind the Design: Fantasy Map Making

    Before the world ended, Cayden was the center of technological advancement. Now, it’s a paradise for only a select few.  It’s a story parents tell their children to distract them from the living nightmares. For my Merging Worlds series, Books 1-3 take place entirely on Jael. Characters mention other provinces but they don’t visit them in the story. But in Book 4, a few characters start in Jael, another group is in Annissa. Some will travel through Sorin. Then, Cayden has a special story in Book 4. Since characters are traveling to different lands, I’ve started updating my maps, adding more textured and details. They’re all be added to Book…

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    Behind the Scenes: Fantasy Map Making

    The maps for my Merging Worlds series have evolved in each book. Each story introduces you to new places. Why didn’t I just release a full map in Book 1? Because you didn’t need it in Book 1. The Sciell really only took place in one area: Northeast Jael- De’Ray Territory 90% of the book was set in Raeul. Chains of the Sciell needed a more detailed map because the characters came from different parts of Jael. Josephine: Denont and Lahyjion Divine: De’Ray Blae and Aliceanna: Korleen Bel, Kaige and Mauve: Sovereign Also, Josephine, Divine and Aliceana were world travelers. They mentioned places in other countries, which meant I needed to include a world map in…

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    World Building: Think of Locations as Characters

    William Estes asked “How much detail do you have to put into locations that your characters only hear about? “ … Depends on how important the location is to the story. For this post, details doesn’t always mean what you put in the story. Sometimes you create background information to help you picture a location. Most of that information never gets into the book. Map it I map every location I name, no matter how small the place is. You at least need to know climate, how close it is to other towns/countries/continents, terrain, size and water source.  Plot Critical  Let’s say your characters are in search of a new…

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    Fantasy Map Making Alternatives to Photoshop

    Chris Mentzer asked “Where can I find a mapmaker program to make designing Fantasy worlds easier?” … I use Photoshop but that program is not easy to understand, which can be a bit frustrating. Let’s look at other map making software. Most of these aren’t free. This list is by no means exhaustive. I haven’t had the chance to use these programs. Check out: Cartographer’s Guild: List of Mapping Software Role Playing Games: What’s the best software for mapmaking? Fantasy Grounds: Map Making Software – summary During my research I started to notice a pattern, some fantasy map making software start out strong in terms of chatter on forums then I find out the program’s…

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    Photoshop Project: Map Making Part 2

    You probably thought I’d review Jurassic World today. My parents came in for the weekend so we didn’t see it. I will be seeing it this weekend! In the post Photoshop Project: Map Making, I showed you the fantasy map I was designing. To recap, I usually make fairly flat maps. I love how they come out. As as experiment, I wanted to try making different terrains. I needed to study other fantasy maps. To Pinterest! Follow Auden’s board World Building: Map Making Reference on Pinterest. The forest gave me some trouble. I played with different greens to find one that didn’t scream at you. Like mountains, trees are a…

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    Photoshop Project: Map Making

    I’m taking a Photoshop class at NYU. Since I taught myself Photoshop, there’s a lot of tools I don’t use because I don’t know what they do. I also wanted to learn why certain tools cause a certain effect. Photoshop has a keyboard shortcut for almost every function. I’ve always wanted to learn them. Something similar to this came out of one of my classes. I can make my own backgrounds for image quotes! That never occurred to me. I created this in the last class. This isn’t a bunch of images put together. The only images are the spaceship and the moons. Everything else is me playing with gradients,…

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    Fantasy World Maps!!!

    Almost finished the world map and the new map of Jael. I just need to add darker boundary lines. Jael is the main province (land) in the series. Book 1, The Sciell, was set in only two places- De’Ray and Raesul. The characters didn’t care about the rest of the land. In Books 2 and 3, the characters come from different parts of the province. They’ve been overseas. Throughout the stories, they travel from one end of Jael to the other.  Because of that, those stories required more world building. Also, as I mentioned before, Books 2 and 3 take place 50 years after the first one. The world is going…

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    Map Making The World: Part 4- Cayden

    Designing this land was fairly straightforward. Last week, I showed you how my landmasses start. Using the Eraser Tool, I drag it around the edges in a zigzag to create a more realistic coastline. Continents don’t have such straight lines. As usual, the mountains caused me some trouble. Because of this map making experience, I’ve gotten better at designing them. Doesn’t mean I don’t need help. Once again, I Googled “Fantasy Map Mountains” and examined other maps. I use this brush set for my mountains. Sketchy Cartography Brushes by StarRaven on deviantART They’re from deviantART. You’ll need to ask permission to use them for commercial purposes. I learned from the…