Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Completion of Iorden: a map commission

Completion of Iorden, a map commission by D.N.Frost for The Once and Future Nerd Part 5 of a series.
This post is Part 5 of a series to augment the Fictional Cartography by D.N.Frost available for free download. Start with Part 1 here.

This and other map commissions are gathered in my Portfolio Directory for you to explore.

Find more guest-inspired content in my Guest Directory.

Thanks to the collaboration we started in Part 1 of this series, Zach and Christian are delighted with their new map:

Through the entire process, D.N. was wonderful to work with!

We entered this process having absolutely no map-making experience. D.N. is extremely patient, and willing to explain her map-making process in a way that makes sense to lay-folk like us.

If we requested a feature that was in reality a poor choice (or, on occasion, actually impossible), D.N. never shot down our ideas. She patiently described how the map would turn out using our idea, how she would recommend to do it differently, and would allow us to make the final decision.

As world-builders without cartographical experience, this was extremely helpful. It allowed us to maintain complete creative control of our world, but also drastically improved the "real-ness" of the geography. On most occasions, our map, and therefore our world, was greatly improved by her input.

In terms of aesthetics, D.N. was always on-point, and extremely detail-oriented. If something on the map didn’t match our exact aesthetic vision, no matter how small, D.N. put in the extra effort to make sure the map uniquely fit Iorden.

She even cared about the far-flung corners of the world that we had not put as much thought into. Those parts of the world that we had left vague, she filled in with exquisite, beautiful detail.

Absolutely recommend D.N. to anyone with a fantasy world!

Check out this Fictional Cartography by D.N.Frost for more maps!

Completion of Iorden, a map commission by D.N.Frost for The Once and Future Nerd Part 5 of a series.
To finish the map, we changed Armstrungard from a large hut symbol to an ivory tower, to represent the aloof scholars who reside in the heart of the city.

We also enlarged the castle symbol for Guernatal to signify its importance as the capital of Iorden. I even tried to capture the blue and gold of the Guernatal crest, but all my efforts clashed with the White Forest.

After a few final text tweaks, I applied a hand-laid watercolor effect to the map, and we were all finished! Zach and Christian approved the final render, and I saved out a package of antique watercolor maps, pirate-inspired inked maps, and print-friendly black and white maps for the TOAFN team.

Completion of Iorden, a map commission by D.N.Frost for The Once and Future Nerd Part 5 of a series.
I learned so much about mapping on this project, and I also really enjoyed connecting with Zach and Christian beyond their TOAFN podcast.

Their creativity and specificity pushed me to conquer new challenges and bring new techniques to the table. I love the complex topography of Iorden, and I'm proud of the stunning elegance of the White Forest.

Best of all, the TOAFN team now has an awesome map to share with their fans. New fans can get oriented in the Realms of Iorden as they listen to the first season, and established fans can find new pleasure in exploring Iorden visually. I hope all the excitement gives the TOAFN team fresh motivation to launch their new season soon, and that this map stokes fresh inspiration for Zach and Christian to create many more seasons to come.

That's it for this series! Up next: The TOAFN team shares their shiny new map...

Want to bring your own world to life? We can map your world.
You deserve a professional map you can be proud to share.

Download Fictional Cartography by D.N.Frost here, or start your adventure below.

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1 comment:

  1. Hello there! My name is D.N.Frost, and I'm a fantasy author, cartographer, and world-builder. My love for storytelling drives me to build the Known World, map its lands, and tell its tales. Let me send you my free ebook at!


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