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I am trying to use an image of a world map as a displacement map for a sphere. Later I want to export the mesh for 3D printing, with the continents looking like engraved into a sphere. I am new to Blender.

This is the image I am currently using:

map

This image is basically the "Land/Ocean map" from this Blender tutorial, just with an erode/dilate filter applied. Because this guy is using it as a texture in Blender I am assuming it is a suitable projection.

What I tried so far:

  • Create a UV sphere
  • Add a Subsurf modifier with 7 subdivisions
  • Add a Displace modifier with this image as texture and a strength of 0.02

The problem is now that while Europe and Africa are squeezed horizontally...

europeafrica

... Australia's east coast is extremely stretched out.

australia

What am I doing wrong? Or is there a completely different, better way?

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