Those Low Down Mapping Blues
I love maps.
I've loved drawing my own imaginary worlds since I was eight years old and started taping pieces of graph paper together so that I could build these massive territory maps and act out my favorite imaginary wars across their surfaces. I would color each sheet of graph paper with crayons, filling in the blocks with specific colors that represented everything from woods and rivers to castles and enemy forces.
Normally I don't have any troubles designing my own maps but last night was something odd because I drew someone else's map.
You see for the last couple of months I've been working on a version of the Great Kingdom Map that the Castle and Crusaders used for my own games. I've probably redrawn this map twenty times since I started with each attempt a little bit smoother and cleaner looking than the last.
|Great Kingdom Map from Playing at the World|
Apparently as I was reworking my version of the Great Kingdom I was training myself to follow their old lines because when I put my pencil down on the page I drew it without thinking about it. So I erased the page and started drawing, doing my best to concentrate on not repeating the Great Kingdom's lines, and drew Oerth instead.
|World of Greyhawk Map from Dungeon Magazine|
One of my favorite worlds but not what I wanted to draw. I wanted to draw something that was original to me and not just another rehash of an established world. It was incredibly frustrating as I've never had trouble designing my own world map before.
I kept working, trying to sculpt my own world's lines on the page, without much luck. It wasn't until I decided to start drawing a map based loosely on my area that things started to loosen up and I was able to get something new on the page. Yesterday was really just a frustrating day all the way around.