Old World Maps

Old World Style Maps

Map of CothelIt took a bit of time, but I finished my first old world style map! It shows far more detail of Cothel than my original maps and I actually had a lot of fun making it (aside from all the bloody trees). Everything is hand-drawn, from the trees to the border lines, to the compass rose. My aim was to generate something that looked authentic and old. In the process, I found quite a few maps on-line to use as references. My favorite map site is Old Maps Online. It lets you browse through maps that correspond to an area on a current world map.

In the process of creating this map (which is 20″x16″ in size) I really learned a lot. I wanted to have the underlying parchment appearance come through to overlays or what I intend to be ink washes. I scrapped more than one layer and went back to rework entire effects several times. But I think I have the process down now and hope to be able to do the next map in perhaps half the time this one took.

Another thing I learned is that old maps really did have a lot of bright colors in them. Initially, I felt reluctant to use anything too bright (and I did mute quite my map a bit to give it a faded and used effect). However, many of the reference maps I examined actually had some neonish coloring to them.

I have prints on order and will have them available with boards and bags for Planet Comicon at the end of the month. I also have mailing tubes on order and will make the map available for order on-line as well.

Map of the Sea of TetIn addition to the old world style map of Cothel, I have produced a 20″x16″ version of my large world map. I formatted it down to size and ordered prints that I will sell at Comicon and on-line. This one should be easier to read than my 8.5″x11″ copies.

What’s Next?

Well, now that I am done with crunch time for Planet Comicon, I will get back to writing more. The time I spent on the map did eat into my writing time a little too much. The next map should hopefully take less seat time, but I will stretch out the actual drawing time to about the same length so I am not single focused on the task.

I also need to get back to purging things for my #Minimalism2017 challenge. I put a lot of the “going through things” on hold to draw the map. Now I can get back into my closet and deal with a few boxes of items.

And lastly for this post, find some time to do some hiking. The weather is getting nice and I’m itching to do some camping and put in some miles on the trails. Yesterday my FitBit told me I had traveled a lifetime of 2,400 miles while carrying it. The gave me the Monarch Migration badge, which made me think about how many miles I have actually walked in my lifetime before having the FitBit. A big factor as a kid was that I had a paper route. So roughly 4 miles a day, 6 days a week, 52 weeks a year, for 4 years or so comes out as just under 5k miles. My feet have done a lot of walking and that doesn’t include the several miles a day walking to and from school for a couple of years.

Henton’s Family

Henton is the third son, and “a second spare” as he likes to refer to himself.  While he does not hate his family, he has kept only a distant relationship with them stemming from events around his fifteenth birthday.

In Cothel, the oldest male child of a family is required to serve in the army for at least one year.  If a family is willing to provide their son for a two-year commitment, instead of serving in the army, they can serve in the Navy.  To compensate for the extra year, the family will receive a reduction in their taxes.  Any additional sons enlisted in military service result in tax reductions for the family for either one or two years of commitment.

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Cothel’s Commerce

Cothel is a fairly diverse country. Much of the land is covered by forests; however, the central and southern regions do have rich farmland. The north eastern part of the county has more bogs and marsh land, but many people make of good living from the plants and animals that grow there.

With both the Uthen and Grey Mountain ranges, there is a significant amount of mining that takes place. Out of the Uthen range comes mostly iron ore, which the city of Steel process into steel to be placed on barges and shipped down river to Antar, where much of it is then sent all around the Sea of Tet.

Climate zones around the Sea of Tet

The lands around the Sea of Tet are generally considered a temperate climate zone, especially in the Cothel area. Lands farthest to the south and beyond the Rim Mountains are more tropical, although the Rim Mountains are generally quite tall and so tend to remain colder at altitude.

Two thousands miles separate the most southern of the known world from the most northern. This puts the northern most countries into the polar zone with shorter summers and harsher winters.

The northern part of the Endless Sea close to land does not remain frozen the whole year, allowing ships to pass around the most northern lands for a couple of weeks at the end of summer. However, the route is treacherous and often filled with icebergs. This keeps those of the most northern countries somewhat isolated from their southern neighbors that border the Sea of Tet. Most countries have trade relationships to allow goods to pass over land, but disputes over taxes and levies have led to many wars through the ages.

Military service in Cothel

In Cothel, each family is expected to have the first born son server at least one year in the army. As an alternative, the family can enlist the son in the navy for a two year term. Because of the longer period of service, the family will receive a tax credit.

If the family has multiple sons, the additional children can also be enlisted in the army or navy, with additional tax benefits received by the family during the initial period of enlistment.

This practice, which was instituted by Stephenie’s grandfather, King Riton, has provided Cothel a strong military. And because of the relative peace over the last one hundred and twenty years, many families take advantage of the tax savings for multiple children.