Beginning Mapping in Inkscape

The other way to do it is center outward.  Go to the center of where you want the circle and click and start to drag to the lower right.  Then press and hold the shift key while you’re dragging.  This will move the center of the circle to your first click point and you just drag it out the size you want it.

Along the bottom in the status bar you’ll seed something that looks like Ellipse: 100.00px x 100.00 px (with the values showing you how big in x and y your object is).

Now for the pro tip on making circles.  If you also press the control key while you’re dragging out your circle in either of the methods above, it constrains to ratio of the x and y sizes to be integer ratios.  This means that as long as you go basically down or up diagonally, it will stay 1:1 and you get a perfect circle.

Tip 7: Changing line thickness.  In the bottom left is a Fill: and Stroke: label with colored lines near it (just under the color bar).  Next to the color line by the Stroke label is also a number.  This is your line thickness.  Right clicking on it will bring up a list of sizes that you can just click on to thicken or slim your line.  If you don’t want one of the choices there you can get finer control.  Double clicking on one of the color lines will open up a dialog with three tabs, Fill, Stroke Paint, and Stroke Style.  The first entry in the stroke style tab is width.  Adjusting this allows you to set the width of your lines to anything you want.

I also encouraged him (and you) to do a web search for “inkscape tutorials”.  There are a lot of good tutorials out there to help you get going and solve particular problems you might run into. That was all my original inquirer needed from me to get started and he cranked out some pretty cool maps for a spaceship he was writing an adventure on.  I hope those little bits help you get started.  Feel free to post questions in the comments and I’ll try to address them.  Happy mapping.

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2 comments on this post.
  1. Jon:

    Automatic grids are easy! Go to Extensions>Render>Grid… and you can set how big you want your grid!

  2. Tom:

    I’ve never noticed that before. Thanks for the tip!

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