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Ortelius User Interface

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Ortelius provides a clean user interface consisting of a drawing canvas, floating palettes, and layer list. Access functions through the main menu located along the top of the screen.

In the main window, the toolbar provides quick access to commonly used palettes and functions. The layers list shows four default layers (Drawing Layer, Guides, Index Grid, and Graph Paper) when opening a new empty drawing file. Additional layers can be added by the user.

Tools are used in combination with the Format Bar, Styles Inspector, and Styles & Symbols palette. The Styles & Symbols palette contains over 1700 editable map symbols and styles organized into Collections and Categories.

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Setting Up a New Map

Ortelius offers you the flexibility to set your drawing canvas dimensions, drawing units, map scale, and more, including the ability to save settings as your personal default for new drawings.

To Open the Drawing Setup Dialog:

To_Open_the_Drawing_Setup_Dialog1.png
  1. Open the Drawing Setup dialog by choosing File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.

Related Topics:
Index Grid Layer
Graph Paper Layer

To Change Drawing Units:

  1. Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  2. Under the ‘Map Size’ section, choose your preferred drawing unit from the drop-down menu (millimeters, centimeters, meters, inches, feet, yards, points).

To Edit the Map Canvas Size:

  1. Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  2. Under ‘Map Size’, enter the width (w) and height (h) of your desired canvas size in the current drawing units.

To Add (or Remove) a Color Background:

The background of the drawing canvas can be set to be either a solid color or image.

  1. Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  2. Under the ‘Map size’ settings, click the ‘Background:’ drop-down list and do one of the following:
  • Click a preset background image fill.
  • Click ‘Color’ to open the Colors panel and choose a background color.
  • Click ‘None’ to remove a background color or image fill.

HINT: Rather than adding a colored background for the entire drawing canvas, you can add one or more Border Layer(s) containing any fill or stroke style that is applied to the map area. See Adding a Border Layer for a Frame (Neatline) or Background for more information.

To Subtract Printer Paper Margins:

When creating a drawing for the printed page, your drawing area may be slightly smaller than your paper size due to paper printer margins around the edges. Optionally, Ortelius will subtract your printer page margins from the entered drawing canvas width and height. Paper margins are based on your current printer settings.

  1. Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  2. Under the ‘Map Size’ section, check ‘Subtract paper margins’.

To Access the System Page Setup Dialog:

For printed works, Ortelius provides easy access to the Apple system Page Setup dialog. Use this menu to change printer paper size and orientation.

  1. Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  2. Under the ‘Map size’ settings, click the ‘Page Setup…’ button.

To Set Map Area Margins:

To_Set_Map_Area_Margins.png

The ‘Map Margins’ define a sub-area within your canvas within which you will draw your map and graphics. This is also the area to which graph paper and index grid will be applied if you use them. For example, 0 (zero) map area margin will size the map area the same as the drawing canvas (no margin). If you will be using an index grid or have elements such as scale or map title outside of the map area, be sure to set map margins appropriately.

  1. Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  2. Under the ‘Map Margins’ section, click into the the boxes and enter the top, bottom, left, and right Map Margins (margins are displayed in the current drawing units).

To Set Units of Measure:

To_Set_Units_of_Measure.png

Ortelius drawings use “real-world” units of measure.

  1. Do one of the following:
  • Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  • Choose File > Scale… from the main menu.
  • With a ruler placed on the canvas using the Ruler tool, double-click the ruler to open the scale dialog.

2. Under the ‘Map Scale and Units’ section, choose the type of units that you want to use for measuring on-the-ground distances from the drop-down list.

HINT: Imperial units, such as feet and miles, are common in the United States, metric units, such as meters and kilometers, are common internationally.

To Set Map Scale:

To_Set_Map_Scale.png

Whether it’s your backyard or an entire continent, when you create a map you are representing features on the earth. Clearly, in order to represent the features on a map, they must be reduced – or scaled – from their true size to fit on the map canvas.

Map scale is often defined as the ratio of a single unit of distance on the map to the corresponding distance on the ground (for example, one inch on the map may represent one mile on the ground).

  1. Do one of the following:
  • Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  • Choose File > Scale… from the main menu.
  • With a ruler placed on the canvas using the Ruler tool, double-click the ruler to open the scale dialog.

2. Then do one of the following:

  • Under the ‘Map Scale and Units’ section, choose a common map scale from the drop-down list.
  • Enter the numbers manually to represent map scale.
  • Define a custom map scale by calibrating distances of known objects that are being drawn (for example, when tracing an aerial photograph or existing map). Choose the Ruler tool. Press and drag the ruler onto the map canvas along a feature with a known distance (for example, a scale bar on a reference map or side of a building on a reference image). Double-click the ruler to open the scale dialog and enter the corresponding ground distance for the ratio. See the related topic: Using the Ruler Tool.

HINT: When drawing features using map units, Ortelius automatically expresses distance in largest whole units in the ruler. For example, a distance over 5280-feet is expressed as miles. To express distance only in the set units, uncheck ‘Always express distance in largest whole units’ in the map scale dialog.

To Pre-scale Symbols and Styles:

Drawing Setup allows a “pre-scale” to be set which is applied to styles and symbols when they are placed on your map The default value is 100% and typically does not need to be changed.

The value is a property of the document, and is used to work with certain mapping specifications where symbols and styles are scaled up in certain situations. For example, some mapping standards have specifications for symbol sizes depicted at a certain scale (such as 100% symbol size with 1:15,000 scale maps), and larger sizes when the scale is enlarged (such as 150% symbol size with 1:10,000 scale maps). In this instance, the pre-scale setting can be changed to 150% and will apply to the entire document.

To Use Your Custom Map Settings as the Default:

  1. Choose File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  2. Customize the drawing settings.
  3. Under the ‘Map size’ settings, click the ‘Set As Default’ button.

To View Different Display Units While Drawing:

A document’s measurement display units can be viewed as points, drawing units, and map units. The setting is persistent, is saved with the document, and affects display of all user interface-related to distances, as well as the display of dimensions.

  1. Choose View > Display Units from the main menu.
  2. Choose the document’s display units from the list (Points, Drawing Units, and Map Units).

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Using Templates

Ortelius delivers with templates for backgrounds, blank standard paper, and several world, regional, and country outline maps. When you first open Ortelius, the Template Chooser is shown by default. Included templates are of varying paper sizes and designs, some of which are sized for poster (tiled) printing or can be shrunk to fit to a single page upon printing.

When you save a drawing created from a standard or custom template, the modifications will not affect the original file. That is, the template itself remains untouched.

To Display (or Hide) the Template Chooser when Launching Ortelius:

  1. Launch Ortelius (first time) or choose File > Template > New From Template… from the main menu.
  2. Do one of the following:
  • Check (or uncheck) ‘Show this window at launch’ to be presented with the template window each time you open Ortelius.
  • Open Ortelius > Preferences… Options in the main menu and check (or uncheck) ‘Show Template Chooser when launching application.’

To Open a New Drawing from Template:

To_Open_a_New_Drawing_from_Template.png
  1. Choose File > Template > New From Template… from the main menu.
  2. Browse the folders of included templates, or your user templates (if any), and choose a template as desired, or “Cancel” to skip templates.

To Edit Template Files:

  1. Open a new file from template.
  2. Within any given template, drawing objects are placed on different layers to keep objects organized. Click onto a layer to make it active. Use the Select [s] tool and click an object within the active layer to select it. Add or delete objects using the drawing tools to customize.
  3. To edit text, use the Select [s] tool and double-click the text to edit it.

To Create Your Own Templates:

  1. Create a new drawing.
  2. Choose File > Templates… > Save Copy As Template to create your own template (a copy of the file is stored in the Template Chooser under a folder titled ‘My Templates’).

To Manage ‘My Templates’:

To_Manage__My_Templates_.png

To access user-created My Templates files to rename, delete, or back-up your files, they are saved to a special folder.

In Mac OS 10.7 and later:

  1. Choose File > Template > New From Template… from the main menu.
  2. Click to select a template (it will be highlighted in green when selected).
  3. Right-click the selected user template and choose “Reveal In Finder” from the contextual menu.

Alternatively, in Finder hold the OPTION-key down while choosing Go > Library in the main menu. Find the following folder:

Mac OS 10.7 and earlier
~/Library/Application Support/com.mapdiva.ortelius/My Templates, where ~ is your home directory

Mac OS 10.8+
~/Library/Containers/com.mapdiva.as.ortelius/Data/Library/Application Support/com.mapdiva.as.ortelius/My Templates

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Working with Map Drawing Layers

A new drawing has a single drawing layer that can contain multiple drawing objects. The number of additional layers you can add to a drawing is limited only by your computer’s parameters. In addition to creating simple drawing layers in Ortelius, you can create layers by duplicating currently existing layers, or by converting a selection into a new layer.

About Layers:

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Ortelius’ layers are discrete, like a stack of tracing paper (or transparent mylar). Just like drawing on paper, each layer can hold multiple graphics in your drawing. You can use each layer as its own “page” to organize your graphics. Within each layer, drawing objects have their own stack order and objects can be moved in front of or behind each other.

Just like with a stack of tracing paper, your graphics on upper layers are shown “drawn on top” of objects in lower layers. Create your drawing with one or more drawing layers. Use layers to stack objects in front of or behind each other, to organize for printing or exporting, and to show, hide or isolate objects for easy editing.

The Layers panel lists all layers in a drawing. The layer that you are working on is highlighted for easy identification. So it’s a good idea always to check which layer is active. For instance, if you try to choose an object and nothing happens, check whether you are in the right layer.

A Guide layer, Index Grid layer, and Graph Paper layer are available in every drawing file. Click the “show” (eye) icon to show (or hide) them.

To work with layers, you should have the Layers panel visible. Using the Layers panel in Ortelius, you can select layers, create new layers, remove layers, show and hide layers, arrange the stack order of layers, and create layer masks.

To Create a New Layer:

Do one of the following:

  • Click the ‘+’ icon at the bottom of the Layers panel.
  • Choose Layer > New Drawing Layer from the main menu.

To Select and Edit Objects within a Layer

  1. Click a layer in the Layers panel. The layer is now active for editing.
  2. Use the Select [s] tool to select objects, and other drawing tools to add and edit objects as desired.

A layer’s color-well, to the right of the layer Show/Hide icon, indicates the color of the selection handles when an object on that layer is selected. To set the color, click the color-well and choose a new color from the pop-up palette.

To Select a Layer in the Layers panel:

  1. Click a layer in the Layers panel. The layer is now active for editing.

The active layer is highlighted and shown with a white arrow to the left of the layer name. Layers that are not active, but contain a selected object, are indicated with a white dot to the left of the layer name.

To Name or Rename a Layer:

Do one of the following:

  • When a layer is added and its name is highlighted for editing, type to add the layer name.
  • Double-click the layer name of the layer you’d like to rename in the Layers panel, then type the new layer name.
  • Right-click a layer and choose ‘Rename’ from the contextual menu.

To Show or Hide a Layer:

Do one of the following:

  • Click the Show / Hide icon to the right of the layer name and lock icon (looks like an eye).
  • Choose Layer > Hide (or Show) from the main menu.

To Lock or Unlock a Layer:

Do one of the following:

  • Click the Lock icon to the right of the layer name to toggle between unlocked (open lock icon) and locked (closed lock icon).
  • Choose Layer > Lock (or Unlock) from the main menu.

To Arrange Layers:

Do one of the following:

  • Press and drag a layer in the Layers panel to rearrange its order in the layers list.
  • Click a layer and choose Layer > Arrange > Bring To Front / Bring Forward / Send To Back / Send Backward from the main menu.

To Create a Layer Group:

  1. Do one of the following:
  • Click the ‘New Layer Group’ icon at the bottom of the Layers panel.
  • Choose Layer > New Layer Group from the main menu.

2. Then do one of the following:

  • With the Layer Group selected, create a new layer. The new layer will be contained within the layer group.
  • Select and drag existing layer(s) into the new layer group.

To Expand and Collapse a Layer Group:

  1. Click the triangle to the left of the layer group name.

To Select a Layer in a Group:

  1. Make sure the layer group Show/Hide icon (looks like an eye) is visible.
  2. Click the individual layer in the group.

To Duplicate a Layer:

  1. Click a layer in the layers panel.
  2. Do one of the following:
  • Choose Layer > Duplicate from the main menu.
  • Right-click the layer and choose ‘Duplicate Layer’ from the contextual menu.

To Delete a Layer:

  1. Click a layer in the layers panel (the layer must be unlocked to delete it).
  2. Do one of the following:
  • Choose Layer > Delete Layer… from the main menu.
  • Right-click the layer and choose ‘Delete Layer…’ from the contextual menu.

A dialog appears indicating the number of objects contained on the layer with a confirmation required to delete the layer.

To Convert the Content of a Selection into a New Layer:

  1. Make a selection of object(s) in your drawing.
  2. Do one of the following:
  • Choose Layer > Move To > New Layer from the main menu.
  • Copy and Paste the selection to a new layer that has been added.
  • Cut and Paste the selection to a new layer that has been added.

To Move the Content of a Selection Among Layers:

  1. Make a selection of object(s) in your drawing.
  2. Do one of the following:
  • Choose Layer > Move To > … choose from the list of existing layers from the main menu. Note, the move-to layer must be visible and unlocked to accept the objects.
  • Copy and Paste the selection to a different layer.
  • Cut and Paste the selection to a different layer.

To Show (or Hide) the Sidebar Layers:

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Do one of the following:

  • Click the ‘Sidebar’ icon in the Toolbar to show and hide the layers list.
  • Drag the sidebar open and closed using your cursor.
  • Choose View > Show (or Hide) Sidebar from the main menu.

To Enable (or Disable) Auto-Activate Clicked Layer:

Ortelius layers are discrete, similar to layers of transparent mylar – select one layer at a time to work with the objects contained within that layer. A preference enables auto-activating a layer when ever an object contained within that layer is clicked.

  1. Open (app) > Preferences… Options pane.
  2. Check ‘Auto-activate Clicked Layer’.
  3. With the Select [s] tool, click on an object in your drawing. As needed, the layer containing the object is activated dynamically.

To Clip (or Unclip) Objects To Map Area:

To_Clip__or_Unclip__Objects_To_Map_Area.png

By default, Ortelius visually constrains drawing objects to within the map margins. Map margins are set during drawing setup and coincide with the Index Grid and Borders. On occasion, it may be desirable to have a map feature fall outside of the map margins. For example, Title text and legends may be placed outside the map margins. Or, for aesthetic reasons you may desire a portion of your map graphic fall outside the formal map margins.

  1. Click a layer in the Layers list that contains the objects for which you want this setting to apply.
  2. Choose Layer > from the main menu.
  3. Check (or uncheck) ‘Clip objects to map area’ from the Layer menu.

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Using Rulers and Guides

Layout is a key aspect to good design. Guides are used extensively during layout to keep objects properly aligned. By default, a Guides layer is provided in every drawing file.

To Show (or Hide) Rulers:

  1. Choose View > Show (or Hide) Rulers & Format Bar from the main menu.

To Add Guide Lines:

To_Add_Guide_Lines.png
  1. Make sure Rulers are visible around the left and top of your drawing canvas.
  2. Press onto a ruler and drag from the ruler onto your drawing canvas, from left-to-right, or top-to-bottom. The Guides layer is automatically activated as the guide line is placed.
  3. Constrain guides to the (visible or hidden) Graph Paper divisions by holding the SHIFT-key while placing a guide.
  4. Place multiple guides as desired.
  5. When you are finished, do one of the following:
  • Click back onto a drawing layer to make it active and continue drawing.
  • Click onto a drawing tool to automatically be switched to the previous active drawing layer and continue drawing.

To Show (or Hide) Guides:

  1. In the Layers list, click the ‘Show / Hide’ icon to the right of the Guides layer name. If you have placed guides, they will become visible (or hidden).

Guide lines are not exported or printed.

To Move Guides Around:

  1. Click the Guides layer to make it active for editing.
  2. Press onto an existing guide and drag it into desired position.
  3. Constrain guides to the (visible or hidden) Graph Paper divisions by holding the SHIFT-key while moving a guide.

To Snap Objects to Guides:

When ‘Snap To’ settings are ON, object center points and handles, and path points, will snap into place.

  1. Place guides on your drawing.
  2. Choose Graphic > Snap To Guides from the main menu.

To Delete Guides:

  1. Click the Guides layer to make it active for editing.
  2. Press onto a guide and drag it off the canvas area onto a ruler.

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The Graph Paper Layer

A layer called ‘Graph Paper’ is included in all new drawings, and is hidden by default. The graph paper layer is customizable. Graph paper can be hidden or revealed in exported and printed works.

To Turn On Graph Paper:

Do one of the following:

  • Click “show” (eye) icon to the right of the Graph Paper layer name to make it visible.
  • Choose File > Graph Paper Settings… to open the Graph Paper setup dialog and check the box to make grid lines ‘Visible’.
  • Right-click the Graph Paper layer and choose ‘Show Graph Paper’ from the contextual menu.

To Change Grid Line Colors, Rulers and Spacing:

To_Change_Grid_Line_Colors__Rulers_and_Spacing.png

Grid line spacing, colors, and rulers are customizable.

  1. Do one of the following:
  • Choose File > Graph Paper Settings… to open the Graph Paper setup dialog.
  • Right-click the Graph Paper layer and choose Graph Paper Settings… from the contextual menu.

2. For grid line spacing, change the following settings:

  • Span – the distance between graph paper primary grid lines, displayed in current drawing units.
  • Divisions – minor subdivisions between grid spans.
  • Majors – major lines encompassing several spans.

3. For colors, do one of the following:

  • Click ‘Theme based on:’ color-well and choose a new color for your graph paper. Semi-transparent colors are recommended. Automatically generated shades represent span, divisions, and majors based on your color choice.
  • Click ‘Or’ and click the color-wells to change the color independently for span, divisions, and majors. Semi-transparent colors are recommended.

4. For ruler labels, change the span line setting.

To Enable (or Disable) Isometric Grid:

The familiar Cartesian grid for graph paper is used by default. Optionally, display an isometric grid to assist with drawing in perspective.

  1. Do one of the following:
  • Choose File > Graph Paper Settings… to open the Graph Paper setup dialog.
  • Right-click the Graph Paper layer and choose Graph Paper Settings… from the contextual menu.

2. Choose ‘Type: Isometric’ from the drop-down menu.
3. Change grid line settings and colors as desired.

To Enable Snap to Graph Paper:

When ‘Snap To Graph Paper’ is enabled from the main menu, object handles, centroids, and points snap to the intersections of grid lines regardless of whether the Graph Paper layer is visible or hidden.

  1. Turn on (show) the Graph Paper layer.
  2. Choose Graphic > Snap To > Graph Paper from the main menu.

To Enable (or Disable) Automatic Snapping when Graph Paper Layer is Visible:

By default, automatic snapping is enabled when the Graph Paper layer is visible. Objects snap to the intersection of grid lines when Graph Paper layer is visible, and do not snap when the layer is hidden.

  1. Open the (App) > Preferences… Editing menu.
  2. Check (or uncheck) the ‘Snap to graph paper when graph paper is visible’ option.

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Using the Index Grid Layer

Maps, such as city and road maps, often use an index to assist the reader in finding specific locations. An index grid is superimposed over the map and is typically annotated with letters and numbers around the edges of the map border. For example, many map readers are familiar with finding a road located in grid cell “G-4.” The Ortelius Index Grid, visible on the Index Grid layer, has flexible controls for adjusting grid cell spacing, border styling, colors, and more.

To Show (or Hide) the Index Grid:

The Index Grid is visible by default when a new drawing is created.

  1. Click the Index Grid “show” (eye) icon in the Layer’s list to show (or hide) it.

To Edit Index Grid Settings:

To_Edit_Index_Grid_Settings.png
  1. Open File > Map Size & Units… > Index Grid from the main menu.
  2. Click check boxes to edit left, right, top, and bottom Index settings. The following options are available:
  • turn ON and OFF annotation
  • turn ON and OFF borders
  • change from letters to numbers
  • rotate annotation
  • reverse the order of annotation
  • edit border settings, such as line width, gap, and color

3. Edit Grid Spacing, including divisions, majors, and color.
4. Edit the Horizontal and Vertical Annotation, including start numbers, increments, placement, and font.

HINT: The Index Grid is dependent on the map scale and affects other derived objects such as Scale Bars.

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Adding a Border Layer for a Frame (Neatline) or Background:

Ortelius introduces a slick way to add a frame border (or “neat line”) and/or background your map. Styling border layers is as easy as drag-and-drop. These borders coincide with the map margins set during drawing setup.

To Add a New Border Layer:

  1. Choose Layer > New Border Layer from the main menu.

HINT: Multiple border layers may be added. Border layers containing fill styles should be stacked under your map drawing layers.

To Add a Frame Border (Neat Line) to a Border Layer:

To_Add_a_Frame_Border__Neat_Line__to_a_Border_Layer.png
  1. Make the new Border layer active.
  2. Do one of the following:
  • Open the Styles & Symbols palette. Drag a stroke style onto the map area.
  • Open the Styles & Symbols palette. Right-click a style and choose “Copy item.” With the Border Layer active, right-click onto the map area and choose “Paste style”.
  • Open the Library Manager. Drag a stroke style onto the map area.
  • Open the Style Inspector. Create a new ad-hoc style. Drag the style from the Style Inspector main panel or Tools style preview onto the map area.

3. As needed, drag a new style from the palette to replace it.

HINT: A number of suitable styles are included in the Mapdiva Library — Embellishments category: see styles with name “Frame border.”

To Add a Fill (Background) to a Border Layer:

To_Add_a_Fill__Background__to_a_Border_Layer.png

Any line or fill style can be applied to a Border Layer, and multiple Border Layers may be added. Area styles, such as Color Regions, will fill in the entire map area. This can be a handy way, for example, to add an ocean background.

  1. Make the new Border layer active.
  2. Arrange the Border Layer to be “under” (toward the bottom of the stack on the Layer list) other layers.
  3. Do one of the following:
  • Open the Styles & Symbols palette. Drag a fill style onto the map area.
  • Open the Styles & Symbols palette. Right-click a style and choose “Copy item.” With the Border Layer active, right-click onto the map area and choose “Paste style”.
  • Open the Library Manager. Drag a fill style onto the map area.
  • Open the Style Inspector. Create a new ad-hoc style. Drag the style from the Style Inspector main panel or Tools style preview onto the map area.

4. As needed, drag a new style from the palette to replace it.

To Clear (or Hide) a Border Layer’s Style:

Do one of the following:

  • Click the “show/hide” icon (looks like an eye) from the layer list to hide (or show) the border layer.
  • With the border layer active, choose Layer > Clear Border from the main menu.
  • Delete the border layer.

To Change the Stack Order of a Border Layer:

Border layers containing stroke (or “frame”) styles can be in front of or behind other map layer content. Border layers containing fill styles should be under other map area content. Do one of the following:

  • Press and drag a Border Layer in the Layers panel to rearrange its order in the layers list.
  • Click a Border Layer and choose Layer > Arrange > Bring To Front / Bring Forward / Send To Back / Send Backward from the main menu.

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Using a Contour Layer

The Contour Layer feature is included as a demo feature for users desiring to draw cross section elevation profiles and illustrative (fiction) maps. Demo features are not fully supported nor intended for applications that require accuracy.

To Add a Contour Layer:

  1. Choose Layer > New Contour Layer from the main menu.

To Add Contours:

To_Add_Contours.png

Adding contours is much like painting them on your map canvas with your cursor.

  • With the Contour layer active, press and drag the cursor around the map canvas, release. A contour is added.
  • Press and drag again adds another contour and automatically adjusts existing contour lines if they push up against each other.
  • Repeat.

To Adjust the Contour Settings:

To_Adjust_the_Contour_Settings.png

The Contours dialog lets you adjust the following settings:

  • Show (or hide) the cross-section (‘Section’) bar
  • Switch the cross-section bar from horizontal to vertical
  • Change base height
  • Unit of measure
  • Contour interval
  • Line width
  • Smooth or simplify contours
  • Color of contours with positive or negative elevations
  • Apply raise or lower terrain or cut valley tool actions
  • Size of terrain tool

To View Cross-Sections of Elevation:

To_View_Cross-Sections_of_Elevation.png
  1. With the Contour layer active, drag the ‘Section’ bar across your map area. The elevations at the bottom of the bar are shown in the cross-section interactively as the bar is dragged.
  2. Use the ‘Contours’ dialog to switch the cross-section bar from horizontal to vertical.

To Remove (or Hide) a Contour Layer:

Do one of the following:

  • Click the “show/hide” icon (looks like an eye) from the layer list to hide (or show) the Contour layer.
  • Delete the Contour layer.

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Using Layer Mask

Masking objects on a layer is a purely visual, non-destructive way to hide parts of the current layer’s content.

To Enable Layer Masking:

  1. Open (App) > Preferences… Editing in the main menu.
  2. Check “Enable Layer Mask Commands”. Mask commands will be made available in Layers > Mask in the main menu.

To Add a Shape to a Layer Mask:

To_Add_a_Shape_to_a_Layer_Mask.png
  1. Select a layer in the Layers panel that contains the objects you want to mask.
  2. Draw one or more shape objects on the layer to be used as the mask (image 1).
  3. With the masking object(s) selected, choose Layer > Mask > Add To Layer Mask.

4. The masked area is initially displayed with a semi-transparent checked-pattern, hiding the drawing objects underneath. The original masking object(s) is not automatically removed from the drawing (image 2) – move or delete the masking object(s) as desired.
5. When you are satisfied with the layout of the mask, choose Layer > Mask > Hide Layer Mask to visually remove the checkered mask area.

HINT: A Layer Mask is a visual effect applied only to the objects on a single layer. In this example (image 3), a Layer Mask is applied to the “background” layer of buildings, while the figure is on a separate drawing layer on top that is not masked.

To Clear a Mask from a Layer:

  1. Select the layer with the mask you want to remove in the Layers panel.
  2. Choose Layer > Mask > Clear Mask.

To Add Additional Shapes to the Layer Mask:

  1. Select the layer with the mask you want to add to in the Layers panel.
  2. Draw another shape to add to the existing mask area.
  3. With the masking object(s) selected, choose Layer > Mask > Add To Layer Mask.

To Subtract Areas From an Existing Layer Mask:

  1. Select the layer with the mask you want to subtract from in the Layers panel.
  2. Draw a shape(s) to subtract from the existing mask area (it should overlap the existing mask area).
  3. With the masking object(s) selected, choose Layer > Mask > Subtract from Layer Mask.

Note on Using Text and Paths in Layer Mask:

  • Convert text before adding to layer mask by selecting the text and choosing Graphic > Convert To Path or Graphic > Convert To Shape.
  • Outline paths before adding to layer mask by selecting the path(s)and choosing Edit > Path > Outline.

To Disable (or Enable) a Layer Mask:

  1. Select the layer with the mask you want to disable (or enable) in the Layers panel.
  2. Choose Layer > Mask > Disable (or Enable) Layer Mask.

To Hide (or Show) the Layer Mask’s Checkered Mask Area:

  1. Select the layer with the mask you want to hide (or show) in the Layers panel.
  2. Choose Layer > Mask > Hide (or Show) Layer Mask.

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Direct Select, Zoom and Pan Navigation

Unlike other more complicated software, use the single direct Select [s] tool to select objects, move, rotate, move path points, change shapes, and more. Keep your focus where it belongs – on your drawing.

With multiple ways to navigate, zooming in and out, and panning around your drawing is a smooth experience.

To Select Objects:

To_Select_Objects.png
  1. Do one of the following:
  • Click on the Select tool in the Tools palette.
  • When another drawing tool is active, click the [S] keyboard shortcut.
  • When another tool is active, click the Esc-key to end editing (as needed) and again to return to the Select tool.

2. Click onto an object to edit.

To Move Objects:

  1. With the Select [s] tool, press onto an object and drag to move it.

HINT: To nudge objects, select the object(s) and use the arrow keys on the keyboard to move incrementally in any direction.

To Zoom In to Your Drawing:

To_Zoom_In_to_Your_Drawing.png

Do one of the following:

  • Click the magnifying glass Zoom In tool and press-and-drag onto your drawing over the area you want to enlarge.
  • Click once with the Zoom tool to enlarge the drawing a click at a time.
  • Use your trackpad pinch-to-zoom gesture to zoom the main view.
  • Use the trackpad two-finger double-tap gesture to ‘Zoom To Selection if there is a selection, or ‘Zoom To Fit Window’ if there isn’t.
  • Double-click the Pan tool to ‘Fit-to window’.
  • Double-click the Zoom In / Out tools to zoom to 100%.
  • Hold the Option-key while using a scroll-wheel mouse to zoom in and out of your drawing at the current mouse position. (Choose (app) > Preferences > Options and check ‘Invert scroll-wheel zoom direction’ as desired.)
  • Use the Shift-CMND- + keyboard shortcut.

HINT: Shadows are automatically disabled at very high zoom levels (over 800%) for enhanced performance. This setting can be changed in (app) > Preferences > Performance in the main menu.

To Zoom Out of Your Drawing:

Do one of the following:

  • Click the magnifying glass Zoom Out tool and click to reduce the zoom the drawing a click at a time.
  • Use your trackpad pinch-outward gesture to zoom out the main view.
  • Double-click the Pan tool to ‘Fit-to window’.
  • Double-click the Zoom In / Out tools to zoom to 100%.
  • Hold the Option-key while using a scroll-wheel mouse to zoom in and out of your drawing at the current mouse position. (Choose (app) > Preferences… Options and check ‘Invert scroll-wheel zoom direction’ as desired.)
  • Use the Shift-CMND- – keyboard shortcut.

To Move / Pan Around Your Drawing:

While zoomed in, do one of the following:

  • Use the track pad or scroll mouse.
  • Click the Pan [h] tool (hand) to press and drag the drawing into position.

To enable quick-pan scrolling while zoomed into a drawing while any tool is active, hold the Spacebar to temporarily activate the Pan tool and drag to reposition your drawing canvas. Releasing the Spacebar reverts automatically to the active tool.

To Zoom to a Pre-Set Magnification:

To_Zoom_to_a_Pre-Set_Magnification.png

Do one of the following:

  • Choose View > Zoom To 100% from the main menu.
  • Click the View pop-up menu at the bottom left of the drawing window and choose a magnification level.

It’s often useful to “fit to window” so that you can see your entire drawing at once.

To Zoom To the Currently Selected Object:

Do one of the following:

  • Choose View > Zoom To Selection in the Main Menu.
  • Use the trackpad two-finger double-tap gesture to ‘Zoom To Selection’.

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How To Draw Using Tools and Styles

In Ortelius, drawing objects go hand-in-hand with the styles that fill and outline them. In fact, the formula for drawing in Ortelius is ‘Drawing Tool + Style = Draw’. Here is an overview of that relationship.

Ortelius relies on “shared styles” across multiple objects. For example, if you draw a road network and need to change the color of the road style, all road objects with this style change automatically when you edit the style. Other sections of this guide provide more depth and step-by-step instructions for using these features.

Overview of the Tools Palette:

Overview_of_the_Tools_Palette.png

SELECTION TOOLS – Select, zoom, pan and navigate with the Selection tools.

GRAPHICS TOOLS – Use the robust graphics tools to draw unlimited shapes, lines and smooth paths. Cut, or split, paths with the Path Cutter tool using a cutting gesture. Insert text boxes or add curved text along paths. Fine-tune your drawing objects by adding or deleting points on paths. Use the Stamp tool to place Ortelius symbols from the Styles & Symbols palette. Use the Style Dropper to pick up and place styles among objects. See Drawing Shapes and Drawing Paths & Curves for more information about all the graphics tools.

CARTOGRAPHY TOOLS – Ortelius’ special tools especially for map design.

PREVIEW – The Preview displays the style or symbols that is active for use with the graphics tools.

HINT: Drawing tools work with both fill and line styles. For example, the Irregular Polygon can create filled areas when applying fill styles and linear objects when applying line styles.

About Ortelius Tool Preferences:

Ortelius provides a preference setting for how drawing tools respond with styles, offering flexibility for your preferred workflow.

  • Tools Remember Styles Individually (Default) – Unlike common drawing applications, in mapping it is often preferable to have each tool “remember” its last used style. By default, each tool remembers the most recently used style as it is applied. Choose a tool, choose a style, and begin drawing.
  • Tools Respond to Active Style – Alternatively, all tools can be set to respond to the active style. To set this preference for your workflow, choose Ortelius > Preferences… Options pane and uncheck “Tools remember styles individually.” A style will remain active with each drawing tool until the style is changed.

To Open the Tools Palette:

To_Open_the_Tools_Palette.png

Do one of the following:

  • Click the Tools icon on the toolbar.
  • Choose Window > Tools from the main menu.

To Open the Styles & Symbols Palette:

To_Open_the_Styles___Symbols_Palette1.png

Do one of the following:

  • Click the Styles & Symbols icon on the toolbar,.
  • Choose Window > Styles & Symbols from the main menu.

To Draw Using Existing Styles:

To_Draw_Using_Existing_Styles.png
  1. Open the Styles & Symbols palette.
  2. Choose a drawing tool from the Tools palette.
  3. Choose a stroke or fill style from the Styles & Symbols palette (note, symbols will be visible but not selectable).
  4. Start drawing.
  5. Continue drawing (subsequent objects have the same style properties until they are changed).

To change styles, click once onto a different style in the Styles & Symbols palette and continue drawing. See The Styles & Clip Art Palette for more information about drawing with extensive built-in styles.

To Draw Using Styles Created in the Format Bar:

  1. Choose a drawing tool from the Tools palette.
  2. Start drawing.
  3. Do one of the following:
  • In the Format Bar, edit the style properties as desired (all objects sharing the style will change; subsequent objects have the same style properties until they are changed).
  • Click the ‘Reset’ button in the Format Bar to reset to the default style, edit the style properties as desired (subsequent objects have the same style properties until they are changed).
  • Click the ‘Clone’ button in the Format Bar to create an exact copy of the current style without affecting other objects, edit the style properties as desired.

4. Continue drawing.

See Cascading Shared Styles for more information about Ortelius’ system of style sharing.

Ortelius goes way beyond simple fill and stroke… See Using the Style Inspector for detailed information about creating expert stacked styles and editing library styles.

To Apply a Different Style to an Existing Object:

With the object selected, do one of the following:

  • Double-click a stroke or fill style from the Styles & Symbols palette.
  • In the Format Bar, edit the style properties as desired (all objects sharing the style will change).
  • Click the ‘Reset’ button in the Format Bar to reset to the default style, edit the style properties as desired.
  • Click the ‘Clone’ button in the Format Bar to create an exact copy of the current style without affecting other objects, edit the style properties as desired.
  • Edit the advanced styles in the Style Inspector… See Using the Style Inspector for detailed information about creating expert stacked styles.

To Copy a Style From an Existing Object to Another:

To_Copy_a_Style_From_an_Existing_Object_to_Another.png
  1. Choose the Style Dropper [d] tool.
  2. With the cursor (it will look like an empty style dropper), click an object that you want to pick up its style.
  3. With the cursor (it will look like a full style dropper), click an object(s) that you want to receive the style.
  4. To pick up a different style while the Style Dropper tool is still active, press the OPTION/Alt key while clicking an object.

Alternatively, do the following:
1. Right-click the object with the style to be picked up and choose ‘Copy Style…’ from the contextual menu, right-click an object to receive the style and choose ‘Paste Style…’ from the contextual menu.

HINT: The dropper can pick up styles from objects inside a group.

To “Quick Pick-up” Another Object’s Style while Drawing:

  1. Choose a drawing tool.
  2. Hold the CMND-key to activate the Style Dropper without switching tools.
  3. With the cursor (it will look like an empty style dropper), click an object with the style to be picked up.
  4. Release the CMND-key and continue drawing.

To Copy a Style from One Object to Multiple Objects:

Do one of the following:

  • Right-click the object with the style to be picked up and choose ‘Copy Style…’ from the contextual menu, choose the Select [s] tool and select the objects to receive the style, choose Edit > Style > Paste Style… from the main menu
  • Choose the Select [s] tool and click to select an object with the style to be copied, choose Edit > Style > Copy Style… from the main menu, select the objects to receive the style, choose Edit > Style > Paste Style… from the main menu

About Sticky Tools:

About_Sticky_Tools.png

By default, tools are “sticky” – the tool will remain active until you choose a different tool (active tool will appear highlighted orange).

Depending on the task at hand, having the tools revert immediately back to the Select [s] tool after each use may be preferred. Double-click on any tool to release them from the sticky state (active tool will appear blue or graphite depending on your system ‘appearance’ setting). In the non-sticky state, click a tool to “turn it on” and use it once. Afterward, you’ll revert back to the direct Select [s] tool.

To make non-sticky tools sticky again, double-click on any tool.