Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Fantasy Cartography with Butch Curry: an inspirational resource

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I first encountered Butch Curry's YouTube tutorials when working on an online role-playing game with a few friends of mine. I had no deftness in Photoshop then, so a more skilled friend searched for some tutorials on how to make digital fantasy maps. She discovered this wonderful series of video podcasts titled Fantasy Cartography with Adobe Photoshop. I watched a few tutorials to learn what sort of map was possible, and my friend started making the maps for our game.

Much later, when I started revamping the first manuscript for my Tales of the Known World saga, I recalled those tutorials and the pretty maps my friend created. I grabbed a notebook and set to work taking notes on the tutorials, everything from specific commands and settings to Butch's broader ideas about cartography theory.

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In his video podcast, Butch demonstrates step-by-step how to pull up different filters, create certain layer types, and execute a variety of useful commands in Photoshop. He also introduces a helpful Photoshop philosophy.

Butch focuses on using flexible tools that maintain independence from other design elements. This allows future changes without a great amount of effort. Whether you're new to Photoshop or just new to digital cartography, Butch Curry's Fantasy Cartography with Adobe Photoshop is a valuable resource I am proud to recommend.

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