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Map making with Inkscape and Google Earth

Preparing a professional vector map using Inkscape


As part of a project, I was in need of the map of the area. I went to panchayath office and village office, but the result was negative. The map which they gave and the format was not useful for me. Thus I decided to prepare it using Softwares. I installed Qgis and Google earth. Qgis was heavy for me to study in limited time. Also the lack of high resolution image from google earth (google earth’s pro can give you) resulted in my failure. But I was to not ready to gave up. I thought of alternate way and ended up in inkscape (the one which I know) I have described the way i have done it.

I am thankful to my sir George Basil (IIT Delhi), Manoj K Mohan, Jaisen Nedumpala for their help and advices.

I strongly recommend you use a GIS software for greater accuracy and easiness.

Steps :

1. Obtain a screen shot of the required area from google earth file > Save As…

2. Open inkscape import the image file > import

3. Create layers Layer > Add layer / (shift+ctrl+L)

Adding a layer

4. Lock the basic layer with our image by clicking the lock symbol i the side dialogue box

5.  Use Bezier Curve tool to Trace the areas like land, pond etc. Use Node tool to adjust if neded. Adjust colour and opacity)

6. Lock the layer and add another layer. Say “Water”. Use Calligraphy Tool for tracing roads and rivers. It is preferred to have some tremor for rivers and streams. and for Roads adjusting the width can indicate different types of roads.

7. After all layer is traced, off the other layer to get the needed layer. From this use can get an individual map for roads, rivers, land area, and others if you use the layer function effectively.





Nb: Use of drawing aids can give you more accuracy.

8.  Index the map using text tool.

Glad news for a photographer like me

Posted on

One of my Entry to a photography contest(first one which i participated) got place in the last round consisting of 19 pic out of 100 plus entries…
here is the pic (
login to your facebook and click like on my pic (if you like)
help me.