Map creation tools?


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Thread: Map creation tools?

  1. #1
    Member KHK's Avatar
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    Dec 2019
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    Map creation tools?

    Dear all,

    I'd like to pick your collective brain on the peculiar subject of maps.
    Among other input I've got from my beta-readers, there's a suggestion to prepend each chapter with a map. The story is unfolding (it's a road trip of a sort), and I don't want to have any spoilers disclosed by one global map in the beginning of the book, as is often the case with Fantasy fiction. I am more in favor of the "fog of war" approach, where the geography becomes gradually clearer along with the plot development.

    I conducted a quick research and found a number of tools, online and downloadable, for creating fictional maps.
    The issue is, my plot is tied to the real world geography. So what I'm looking for is a tool to take an area snapshot from, say, Google Maps, and convert it into a "hand-drawing", engraving-style, with the ability to overwrite my own toponyms and draw my own boundaries.

    Has anyone come across something like that? A standalone tool, or maybe even a Photoshop plugin? Anything?

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    So what I'm looking for is a tool to take an area snapshot from, say, Google Maps, and convert it into a "hand-drawing", engraving-style, with the ability to overwrite my own toponyms and draw my own boundaries.
    Link to image: https://cp.sync.com/dl/0f867e2a0/b987cp97-p2uzvjka-2xm4z8bj-wc8uifx9

    You can do this in Photoshop:
    1. Duplicate the background image.
    2. Change blend mode of the duplicate to Divide (image will turn pure white).
    3. Apply Gaussian Blur to bring out the "sketch" details.
    4. Place a B/W adjustment layer above that to remove all colors.
    4. Place a curves (or levels) adjustment layer above that to increase contrast (pull in the black end of the curve).

    Additional refinements, just to illustrate: https://cp.sync.com/dl/11cb18100/d9n...3cvng-ps2hmwui
    Last edited by David K. Thomasson; October 13th, 2020 at 04:53 PM. Reason: add new image link

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