• The 'Comrade' title is now available in a fetching communist red for purchase by all of you capitalists who survived the Sietch gulag during the people's revolution. And in the spirit of all communists everywhere, it was broken until the capitalist pig dogs fixed it. ;)

The Portfolio of Foreign Worlds Cartography - Maps for Writers & Gamers

Introduction

Culsu

Agent of the Central Plasma
Founder
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
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2,765
Hello and welcome to my little showcase in this corner of The Sietch. I'm a map maker by trade, having spent the past years working with indie game studios, Kickstarter projects, writers &, RPG-afficionados from around the world to bring their worlds to life. If you like you can check my references and former satisfied clients here.

You can find my full portfolio by following the link above, or by clicking on the links in my signature, too.

In the post below, you will find a few examples of my craft, and I will add new works to this thread when they are finished.

What do I need from you?
Should you be interested in my services, I humbly request that you contact me either via my website's contact form or by directly messaging me at mail@foreignworlds.net . But before you do so, please consider the following questions:
  • Size. How large is the map you want? What are its dimensions (cm/inches/pixels) and desired resolution?
  • Color or B&W?
  • Details. What's the level of individual detail you are looking for? This point includes such things like illustrated crests, flags, highly elaborate locations, ornate map borders, etc. As an example, think of the way you'd like to depict a town on your map: you can do it as simple as a dot. But you can also draw, color and fully shade a miniature town.
  • Style. What kind of style would the you like? I can be flexible, although it’s advisable that it remains at a style that I’m familiar with.
  • Urgency. How urgently is the map needed?
  • Sketch. Providing me with a sketch, no matter how simple, really helps me a lot.
  • License. What kind of rights do you need? Private use, use on a single book, lifetime global use rights, etc. ...
What will you get?
Timely communication, unbroken deadlines, and quality maps made to your specifications.

When will you get them?
Going from experience, a very useful estimate for the time needed to complete a map is between 8 to 12 hours for a piece in black & white. For colored maps the time needed can be everything from 20-25 hours and above. For my largest project to date I had to spend in excess of 50 hours on the job, drawing, coloring and revising.
This is not my main job, so please take into consideration that I can only work on your project for a few hours at a time in my spare time, be it in the evenings or during the weekends, if my schedule permits as much.
Now, what does this mean for you, effectively? For a black and white map, expect it to take about a week, revisions on your part included. For a colored piece, calculate with three weeks. I can probably finish it sooner if I drop everything else and sleep four hours a night (which I'm willing to do), but that would cost you more.

What will it cost you?
That depends on your individual project. A letter-sized black & white map will naturally be cheaper than a poster-sized map in full color. But as a general guideline, you can take the following as an estimate, stemming from the average time spent on the job as outlined in the paragraph above.

Please note: the actual price is negotiable and depends on the questions I posed under the "What do I need from you?" paragraph. The price for maps does not scale exponentially, and your commission might be a good deal cheaper than you at first may fear!
Don't be shy: gather your facts and approach me for a price quote!
  • black & white map, print ready @300 dpi, up to and including A4/letter size: €180 and above
  • colored map, print ready @300 dpi, up to and including A4/letter size: €360 and above
For more specifics and/or commission inquiries feel free contact me either via my website's contact form or by directly messaging me at mail@foreignworlds.net
 
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Deleted member 18

Guest
This is some real quality work. I'll recommend you next time I'm in a game, or if anyone asks around for a mapmaker.
 
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Deleted member

Guest
So, I have made some alternate-Earth maps as overlays in google Earth, would you physical maps based on those or do you only work in fantasy-style maps? I would be thinking of something in a 19th-century map style...
 

Culsu

Agent of the Central Plasma
Founder
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
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2,765
So, I have made some alternate-Earth maps as overlays in google Earth, would you physical maps based on those or do you only work in fantasy-style maps? I would be thinking of something in a 19th-century map style...
You mean something like this?

 
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Deleted member

Guest
I think it's more do you mind doing maps of the actual Earth, but an alternate timeline? Like, say, an ATL where there was no American Revolution and the map would show the 13 Colonies as still British? (Random example)

No, I meant Kaetjhasti.
 

Quirel

Workaholic for hire
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Aug 12, 2019
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Location
Potatostan
I love your space maps. How different are those from the fantasy world maps? Do you need more references for the space stations and such?
 

Culsu

Agent of the Central Plasma
Founder
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Reaction score
2,765
When I'm rich I'll hire you year round. Until then, I remain a fan, your work is impressive.
Thank you! And yeah, I know it's a good deal of money, but I wouldn't be asking it if I could do this any quicker. :/
I love your space maps. How different are those from the fantasy world maps? Do you need more references for the space stations and such?
Uh, I hate to answer with "It depends", but it depends. The work as such is different from the fantasy maps I do, but by and large the amount of time I have to invest is about the same. Sure, you don't have draw three coastal detail layers + color + shading, but each individual planet still needs details (the planets I draw are usually between four to five times larger than they end up on a map, in case someone needs a zoomed in section). As for space stations, the level of details really depends on how prominent the station is supposed to be. In "The Vault of the Last Autarch" it's pretty detailed (it's actually a 3D-model I made, then painted over), but in many of the other space maps I've made the looks and design was completely up to me, so I kinda winged it. The rest really is predetermined by the size of the map itself and the resolution. For example, I'd never be able to squeeze the same amount of details into this map here as I did with the Vault map.

I actually have a lot more of those made, but haven't had a chance to post them yet since the product they are for has still to be published.
 
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Deleted member

Guest
A question, will you do larger maps for an upcharge? And what about projections?
 

Culsu

Agent of the Central Plasma
Founder
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Reaction score
2,765
A question, will you do larger maps for an upcharge?
I'll do the maps as large as you need them. Rest assured that my pricing model isn't one of exponential growth linked to the map size, but more of a flattening curve, if I had to describe it. An A3-sized map will not cost you a lot more than an A4-sized map. It's sizes larger than that when we're looking at price tags in the range of €500. At the end of the day it really depends on the level of detail as much if not more so than the size. Consider my pricing stated here and in the introductory post as guidelines rather than fixed numbers.
And what about projections?
Haven't done these before, so I'm wary to take on a commission involving such a style.
 
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Deleted member

Guest
Roger that. I would definitely consider an A3 then. I think to minimise projection issues I wouldn’t ask for a full globe and would instead want outlying territories in insets.
 
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Guest
You have no problem making the map in German with fictional cartography company name on it in Fraktur circa 1895?
 
World Map: Imperium - A World of Lost Memories

Culsu

Agent of the Central Plasma
Founder
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Reaction score
2,765
A cyberpunk and post-apocalypse inspired piece done for Massaad Design, a French indie developer.

This was something rather different from what I usually work on, but at the same time it was a great piece to try new methods on. The final layout will be different as the studio has their own layout artist.

 
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