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Working with map layouts

From: Up and Running with ArcGIS

Video: Working with map layouts

We've made signficant progress on gathering, arranging, Here, we're editing the map page on the screen.

Working with map layouts

We've made signficant progress on gathering, arranging, and symbolizing the data within our map. Now it's time to add the finishing touches before we publish the final version for the world to see. So far, we've been working with our map in a global mode called Data View. Let's switch gears a little and take a look at a second way to view our maps through something called the Layout View. Layout View allows you to visualize how all of the map's elements will be arranged on a piece of paper. And you can there by going up to the View menu here and choosing Layout View from the menu. Another way to get there is to go down to the very bottom of your screen and click this button here to switch to Layout View.

Now Layout View represents how the map will sit on a piece of paper. This outer black box represents the piece of paper, and this inner box if I click on it, represents the data frame that our map is within. Now when you load up Layout View, you get this new toolbar here named Layout tools. And this can be dragged around and docked just like every other toolbar. I'll leave mine floating for now. On the Layout Tools toolbar, are a series of Zoom and Pan tools that look very similar to the zoom and pan tools available up here, but they work very differently. Here, we're editing the map page on the screen.

And over here, we're editing how the map sits on the piece of paper. So let me show you what that means. Here if I use this Pan tool, I'll move around the piece of paper on my screen, whereas if I use this Pan tool up here, I'll move the map around on the piece of paper. The Zoom tools work the same way. If I use this zoom tool here, I'll zoom in on the piece of paper. Let me go ahead and press this button here to zoom out to the whole page. If I use this zoom tool here, I'll zoom in on the map on the page. Let's go ahead and reset our scale here by going to Bookmarks and going back to the Washington bookmark here.

On the top and side of our screen, we'll notice some rulers. And if you click on the ruler, you'll add a guide that'll help us snap elements in place as we continue to work on our layouts. Let me go ahead and add a couple of guides here. I'm going to click and drag one at the 8 inch mark, and if I move this layout tools out of the way. In fact I'm actually going to dock mine up here, like so. And if I start dragging this layout guide around, you'll notice over here on the right, a little pop up flag that tells me where I'm positioning that. I'm going to put it at 8 inches here, and I'm going to put another one over here. And then once I click, I can drag it left and right and I'll put it at a half inch there.

And I'm going to put some on a vertical ruler. This one I'll click to drop the guide and I'll click and drag again to move it to the 10 and a half inch mark. And I'll come down to the bottom and I'll add one at a half inch at the bottom there. Now if I drag my data frame around and I'm going to go ahead and change my tool here to the Select Elements tool, so I can move the data frame. Now if I drag these corner points, you'll notice I can put it wherever I want, but if I get close to the ruler guides, it'll snap into position. So I can precisely align my map to the piece of paper. Let's go ahead and snap the frame to the margins. Now if you're not seeing the rulers on your screen, what we can do is go up to the Customize menu here, and go to ArcMap options.

Here we'll switch over to the layout tab and we can see a couple of different options for showing or hiding those guides or showing or hiding the rulers. We also have an option down here to turn snapping on or off to various elements. So either guides, grids, rulers, or margins. Let's go ahead and leave the settings the way they are, and I'll go ahead and say OK. Now by default when you switch into Layout View for the first time, the page layout is going to be the standard size piece of paper for a printer, which is 8 and a half inches. If I go up to the File menu, I can adjust these settings by going to Page and Print set up here. Here we can choose various paper sizes that we want our layouts to be at, and these are locked in to the size of our printers over here.

If you want to choose a different size piece of paper, come down here and make sure that this use printer paper settings check box is turned off and we can specify any custom size we want. We have some standard sizes here, but you're free to type in whatever width and height you'd like here. For instance, if I type in 18 by 24 inches, you'll see that I would make a poster size map here. If I go ahead and say OK, you'll notice that my map layout updates. Now my ruler guides are still where I placed them originally, so I have to readjust the layout of this screen. But now you see that I could make a poster size map.

Let's go ahead and change that back to an 8 and a half by 11 page. Go back to File > Page and Print Setup, and this time I'll change it back to 8.5 inches by 11 inches. I also have a Radio button down here where I can switch it's orientation from Portrait to Landscape, if I would like. And actually I think this map is actually going to work better as a landscape map. So let's go ahead and change that and say OK, and I'll come over here and I'll start rearranging my guides a little bit. I'll drag this back down to the 8 inch mark, and I'll move my data frame down to lock it into position. And I'm going to leave this space over here on the right blank, so that I can add other elements throughout the rest of the this chapter.

Let's go ahead and zoom in our map a little bit, so that it fills up the screen. I'll use this zoom tool here, and I'll zoom in on the state of Washington a little bit. And maybe I'll rearrange it just a little bit using the Select Elements tool here and we'll just fit the state of Washington on the screen, and we'll make it like so. Okay, so I'm going to call that good. So after all your analysis work is done and your map is assembled in Data view, the Layout View is your one stop shop for adding the finishing touches, before you share your work with the world. By setting the output paper size in the Page and Print settings first, you'll be able to accurately visualize and prepare the final layout of your map.

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Up and Running with ArcGIS

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