Re: [nbos] [FM 8] : Eberron Core Map"Christopher Rodrigues Macias" Tue Jul 17th, 2007
Thanks, Joe. I'm glad you liked the results. However, you've identified two of the map features I'm really hoping can be improved upon using the FM8 features.
The gradient fill under the mountains gave the look I wanted, but it's a very 'fiddly' and time-consuming technique. Draw a closed spline curve around the mountains. Fiddle with the gradient fill colour, direction and transparency to get it to look just-so. Move it behind the mountains and see how it looks. Adjust the nodes, colours, gradient length over and over until I'm happy. Rinse, repeat.
It was made even slower because I used a gradient fill for the entire continent (something I originally did entirely by accident, but it happened to work beautifully for this map, so I kept it) which meant I had to sample the colour of the underlying terrain with the colour selector every time I drew a new gradient. Argh!
I think the 'feather' effect (in the 'Blur' palette) may make this approach obsolete. Early experiments look very promising. Oh, how I love this new version already!
I have mixed feelings about the cliffs. They 'worked' but I was never truly happy with the look. And they were even more time consuming than the shaded terrain under the mountains, so I would recommend against following this example unless you can't find a better alternative.
I don't have any suggestions yet, but again I'm hoping that some combination of the FM8 features will provide an easier option. If you (or anyone else on the list) comes up with something, please let me know!
From: nbossoftware-bounces-at-nbos.com [mailto:nbossoftware-bounces-at-nbos.com] On Behalf Of Joe Frazier, Jr
Sent: Wednesday, 18 July 2007 7:17 AM
Subject: Re: [nbos] [FM 8] : Eberron Core Map
Christopher Rodrigues Macias wrote:
>I think we, as a user community, do need to make a better effort to share tips and techniques. I'm experimenting with FM8 right now, and I can already see several areas where it would make some things I did on the Eberron map *much* easier. If (emphasis on the 'if' here) I have the time, I might start contributing some 'how to' tips to the mailing list. I hope others will do the same so I can learn from them.
>Down the road maybe we can collect these into an on-line manual of some sort, but that's getting ahead of things. At the moment we just need to do a better job of sharing what we know. The Astro 2 users have been *very* active in this regard, so I kind of feel like we're not living up to their standards!
>Time to start giving back, people. Just because FM is 'easier than CC' doesn't mean it's 'easy'!
Just to expand further on this topic, one of the things that I REALLY liked about Christopher's Eberron map was the use advanced use of
gradient fills. Specifically, if you look at most maps posted on the
net, people put down a solid brownish-tan shape under their mountain
symbols. What I really liked about the Eberron map was that the shape
had a gradient fill on it so that it seems to transition from the underlying continent color of green into the brown color of the mountain symbols themselves.
Likewise, the way the cliffs at the top spoke of the "star" shaped lake were built looks intuitively like a cliff face(to me anyway), where as may other things I have seen require the end user to kind of imagine it to be a cliff.
These are fairly simple techniques that I would never have thought of without being able to download Christopher's map and tear it apart, layer by layer.
Of course, FM 8 is far easier to use, but still, there are some techniques a few people have used that may not be obvious to someone without a lot of artistic talent. With that in mind, I will be posting my first map soon, hopefully within the week so that others can benefit from what little skill I have.
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