A small update

I have been trying to teach myself to draw maps in the current version of Adobe Illustrator, since the old version that served me faithfully for years isn’t compatible with my current operating system. (At one time I would have drawn the line art by hand, scanned it, and added lettering and shading by computer; but since my stroke, I can’t trust my hand to produce anything clean enough to use.) In the process, I have learnt two things:

1. Adobe Illustrator is absurdly powerful, but this also makes it absurdly difficult to do the simplest things. It feels rather like trying to pick up a raw egg with a construction crane.

2. I can only work on this stuff for an hour or two at a time before my eyes go funky. Once that happens, the job becomes intensely uncomfortable and more or less futile. It feels rather like trying to pick up a raw egg with a construction crane whilst operating the controls with boxing gloves on.

Nevertheless, I have put in a bit of practice on a scratch map that bears no possible relation to any of my written work. I do not intend to show this map to anybody. But I am gradually getting familiar with the tools again, and finding where they are hidden in Adobe’s New & Improved™ Horrid User Interface.

By the way: Don’t tell me to use Photoshop instead. Line art should be vector art. Raster art is resolution-dependent, which means that it looks like soft-boiled feces when blown up to larger sizes. Vector art scales. This is an article of religion, which I will not be talked out of. (And don’t talk to me about the GIMP, which is like picking up a raw egg with a construction crane whilst operating the controls with tongs held between one’s toes. The chief trouble with open-source software is that good user-interface designers have a rational expectation of getting paid.)

Comments

  1. Very late advice, but you might try Inkscape. An intuitive (at least to my old brain) free vector package.

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