I’ve been creating some maps this year, and along the way I made a YouTube video tutorial based on a tutorial I like. The tutorial is great for those looking to learn about Photoshop as well as how to create the map style!
Why Did I Make This?
Well, it started when I found the Cartographer’s Guild online community for map makers: www.cartographersguild.com, a group of enthusiasts willing to share their knowledge. I love it. There is much one could learn here; I wanted just to make a map look a little nicer. I soon discovered an excellent atlas map style tutorial by a user named Ascension and immediately went through it.
It was a great tutorial and a great style I could reuse for multiple maps. However, the presentation was very dense so I decided to make a shorthand version with just a list of commands so I could move through it quickly. Once I started writing it out, it seemed like others could benefit from such a list, so I asked Ascension if he would be offended if I posted my version of his tutorial. He said go for it.
As I created my version, it began to evolve into a meticulous step by step guide that a first-time Photoshop user could complete. I broke complex steps down into smaller steps with color-coded text to point out keyboard shortcuts and other aspects. That allowed a repeat or advanced user to more quickly move through the tutorial and skip things they already know. After some testing on first-time Photoshop users, some feedback, and further revision, I posted the tutorial on the Cartographer’s Guild forum at this forum post.
While working on my tutorial, I realized most steps could be achieved with a few complex Photoshop Actions. That led me to create a companion tutorial which uses Actions and posted it along with the actions files in the same post linked above.
The YouTube tutorial
After I posted my written tutorials, I had a request to create a video version. I thought it would be fun to do because I’ve never posted a video to YouTube or made a screen-capture based video tutorial, so… why not? It also gave an excuse to play with some software and features I usually don’t use.
The tutorial ended up taking a long time to make because it’s almost two hours of total combined length, so I didn’t spend as much of that time learning new software and features as I had hoped, but it was still fun to make! Next time… maybe a shorter tutorial is in order.