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Island Cliffs advice

So I tried to add some cliffs to the edge of my island here. The cliff symbols didn't really fit that well with the shape of my edge so I first tried to use the "mountain fill" terrain on the "sea features" sheet. That didn't look too good so I tried regular mountains instead. I don't really know what to think of it now. I guess that a big problem would be the fact that the mountains always end in a small slope and when the edge of my landmass follows an almost vertical line, it looks a bit off.

Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance!



  • Looks good the me - perhaps some waves or rocks at the base.

  • PapaJohns57PapaJohns57 Traveler

    Thanks for the feedback, I added some rocks at the base. It looks better now.

  • MonsenMonsen 🖼️ 46 images Cartographer Administrator

    I would probably do the coastline differently. That blue color doesn't look right when it ends up on the top of the cliffs like that. Maybe a different color, or maybe simply drop it completely. If you keep the "cliff mountains" on the same sheet as the landmass, you could use a glow effect for the coastline that would then trace the actual outside of the combined shape. Another option is to draw the coastline manually as a separate entity, and either skip it at the cliffs, or draw it at their base.

    LoopysueDon V Anderson Jr.
  • PapaJohns57PapaJohns57 Traveler

    You're right, the blue coastline doesn't look right on top of the cliffs. Thanks for your feedback!

    I split the coastline in two separate parts and changed the colour of the coastline above the cliffs.

    Would something like this work then?

  • I must admit, I would drop the coastline completely, add an outside Glow to the LAND sheet, with colour 66 (and not much blur, with the width that you want, and fairly high strength). And your 'cliffs' will hide the glow where they are placed, giving a better look I feel.

  • PapaJohns57PapaJohns57 Traveler

    I must be doing something wrong. I got rid of my coastlines, added the glow effect to the land sheet and everything, but the mountains don't cover the glow effect and instead just become blue as well.

    The cliffs are on the "sea features" sheet for now as this makes sure they don't cover the landmass instead. Maybe that explains why?

  • Yes - you need to put them on a sheet above the LAND, and then perhaps a LAND ABOVE sheet with no glow, to cover the parts of the cliff you want covered.

  • PapaJohns57PapaJohns57 Traveler

    I feel quite stupid now but what should I put in the LAND ABOVE sheet? Probably part of the landsmass right? But how would I split that in two exactly?

    I'm still new to this so I'm sorry to trouble you with these kinds of questions.

  • Just add a strip of land to cover the cliff symbols you want covered, using the same bitmap as for the LAND sheet, but with no effects.

    Your sheet order would look like this.

    LAND - with a outer glow, colour 66, stregth 40-50, little blur, and range as big or small as you desire

    SYMBOLS CLIFF - this is where the symbols you are using for your cliffs go

    LAND ABOVE - same bitmap as LAND, just to cover the part of the cliffs you want covered. No effects

    I hope this helps, and it is no trouble at all.

  • PapaJohns57PapaJohns57 Traveler

    Ah, that explains a lot, thanks! It should be fixed now. Thanks for all your help!

  • That is a great way to do sea cliffs - I will borrow that technique. You could make the outer glow on the land sheet a bit bigger and stronger, IMO

  • PapaJohns57PapaJohns57 Traveler

    Glad you like it! I made the outer glow a bit bigger and stronger.

  • Sorry I wasn't around last week to help with this, as the technique of using mountain symbols for cliffs like this is very similar to what I used for my "The Cliff" map, Errynor Map One, in the Community Atlas some time ago.

    Glad you managed to get everything resolved to your satisfaction though, as it's quite a tricky problem to get the covering clifftop polygon to always look right especially.

    Of course, next you'll be wanting to differentiate between pebble and sandy beaches in the shoreline coves 😉

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