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How to make an old map


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This tutorial is available as a PDF. Click here to view or download it



Well here's a tutorial adapted from a Photoshop's tutorial and as you've probably guessed we're going to make a map...

EDIT: There are now two ways for doing step 3, thanks to @PeaceHeather.


Below are links to the effects mentioned in this tutorial:
Threshold by @Ed Harvey
Multi-Threshold by @dpy
Curves+  and  Gradient Mapping by @pyrochild
Grid / Checkerboard by @BoltBait
Lines/Grid by @ReMake

Here's the final product:


Step 1
Open up a new image :FileNew: 800x600 px (File => New).


Step 2
Apply Clouds effect :CloudsEffect: (Effects => Render => Clouds) and set Scale amount to 545.


Step 3 Way 1
Apply Posterize adjustment :PosterizeEffect: (Adjustments => Posterize), set all values to 2.


Step 3 Way 2
Use the Threshold effect (Effects => Color => Threshold).

Now you move the sliders to add or subtract land/sea.


Addition: There is a few more ways to make a black and white contrast image besides the above in step 3. You can use Brightness / Contrast :BrightnessContrast:  (Adjustments => Brightness / Contrast) with maximum contrast,


or Levels :LevelsEffect: (Adjustments => Levels) with Input Histogram settings shown below,


or Curves Icons-Curves-Effect.png(Adjustments => Curves), or Curves+ (Adjustments => Curves+) with Black & White built-in preset,
Step3e.png   Step3f.png


or Gradient Mapping (download preset  Black and White)


All of the above ways will give you exactly the same results.


You should now have a black and white map looking like this:

Step 4
Use the Magic Wand :MagicWandTool: tool with the Flood mode set at Global :FloodModeGlobal: and Tolerance at 0, select the white and delete it.


Addition: You can skip this step using in step 3 Multi-Threshold effect (Effects => Multi-Threshold) with the settings shown below.

Step 5
Make a new layer :LayersAddNewLayer: below the land and fill it with a dark brown colour (5C4D2B)


Step 6
Add a Radial :GradientTypeRadial: Gradient :GradientTool: to the dark brown background, the primary colour should be AB9E67 and the secondary colour should be 5C4D2B.
If you wish you could hide the map layer.



Step 7
Now, if you have hidden the map layer, unhide it then select it. Select the Paint Bucket :PaintBucket: tool, set the Flood mode to Global :FloodModeGlobal: and fill the black with dark brown colour 2A2415. You should now have something like this:



Step 8 (optional)
Create a new layer :LayersAddNewLayer: which should be on top of all layers and add a compass. If you need a compass image, open the image shown below in Paint.NET and invert its colors (Ctrl+Shift+I). Make sure it's only white and transparent.



Put the compass at the bottom right and set the layers opacity to 100. Merge layers down.



Step 9
Make a new layer :LayersAddNewLayer:. Change your primary colour to AB9E67 and the secondary colour to 5C4D2B.
Now go to Clouds effect :CloudsEffect: (Effects => Render => Clouds) and set Scale amount to 280.



Now change the Layer Blending Mode :LayersLayerProperties: to Color Dodge and set Opacity to 75. Merge layers down.



Step 10
Set your primary colour to Black :BlackAndWhite:. Make a new layer :LayersAddNewLayer:.  Run Grid / Checkerboard effect (Effects => Render => Grid / Checkerboard) and use the following settings,



or use Lines/Grid effect (Effects => Render => Lines/Grid) with the settings shown below:



Select the Move Selected Pixels :MoveTool:tool and move the grid to the left and up by 1 px. Change the Layer Opacity :LayersLayerProperties: to 75. Merge layers down.



And you must be finished.


Results of the tutorial may vary, and you can change them according to suit your needs or preferences.


Added and edited by ReMake.



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wow! If you combine this with this, you get a REALLY sweet map!

No, Paint.NET is not spyware...but, installing it is an IQ test. ~BoltBait

Blend modes are like the filling in your sandwich. It's the filling that can change your experience of the sandwich. ~Ego Eram Reputo

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I'm over on CartographersGuild.com, a lot of people dedicated to mapmaking, and folks there use a lot of really heavy-duty software just to produce cloud-based maps. :mrgreen: I'm actually writing a tutorial myself that uses PDN exclusively and gets some pretty nifty results. (I'm having fun being the subversive PDN person on the forum, because so few people over there use it and there are like TWO tuts in the entire forum that rely on PDN as the main software.)

If I may, terrycain, another thing you can do is run Threshold to get your black-n-white layer, and use the sliders to adjust the boundaries for your ocean/coastline. You can also run Alpha Mask to get the transparency you're after - if you get backwards results (ie land where you wanted ocean), you just Undo, Invert Colors (CTRL-Shift-I), and then run Alpha Mask again.

I don't want to hijack this thread, because terrycain's map has a very different style from mine and I like it, especially the antique feel of it. Those browns are gorgeous, dude. But if people are interested, I can post my tutorial here as well as over on CG once it's finished.



EDIT: *smacks forehead* You just taught me what Global mode is for, and saved me half a dozen rounds of Select - Fill - Rinse - Repeat. Sometimes, I am such a goober. :wink:

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Thanks for the tips especially about the alpha mask and the threshold tip, if you dont mind i'll update my tutorial to incorporate the thing about the threshold, but i think i'll keep the bit about deleting the white because it reminds people what teh global option does.


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This is a nice tutorial. Simple, but great result. Nice job. ;)

You can also whack the contrast up to maximum in Brightness/Contrast (CTRL + SHIFT + C), to achieve a similar posterize/threshold effect. Threshold is more flexible though.

Merry Christmas


.::.My Gallery.::.Make Gold Text!.::.

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  • 2 weeks later...

As another way to do step 3 you can use brightness/constrast and set constrast to 100, this way you don't have to download any plug-ins.


History repeats itself, because nobody was paying attention the first time.

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haha, it's 3 different tutorials in 1 picture... the edging on the map, the texture on the map, and the actual map are all different tutorials I followed...



a simpler map, without all of the other stuff and a frame...

  • Like 1


Previously dgirl555, but now you can call me epic

Oh, and I really like airbrushing photos

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