Interested in making something like this yourself? Check out my video tutorial on YouTube!www.youtube.com/watch?v=0uMK3Y…
This is a third in a series of maps derived from reap photos of celestial objects. With a little processing, the image becomes the height map that defines the terrain. In this case, the source is an image of a purple nebula, which is available here
. You can look at the two previous maps in this series here
Many nebulae have well-structured, sharply-defined cloudy areas which lend themselves well to becoming a height map. The problem with nebulae is that they often have darker interior regions, which either lead to lots of flat areas from my erosion program, or require me to do some land sculpting. I chose to do some sculpting, and I redefined the largest flat areas to become part of a large central lake.
I've been refining my algorithm for this technique. From start to finish, this map took about an hour. With my new machine, I could probably do it in 30 minutes.
The top part of the image is free to use for whatever purpose you desire. I do not own the rights to the picture on the bottom; it's provided purely for comparison purposes.