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Matching legend pattern angles to data set not north = 0

September 23 2009 | 0 comments
Categories: Map Elements, Symbology

My data set is north = 40, not the normal north = 0, thus the angle of my poly patterns show at a different angle. i.e., hatch marks in legend are perfectly vertical, while my graphic patterns are at an angle. Is there an adjustment I can make to the legend which would make them match up?

Mapping Center Answer:

The best way to match the legend hatch pattern orientation to the pattern orientation in the map is by adding a copy of the layer to the table of contents.  Symbolize the copied layer so that it looks how you want it to look in the legend (which you already have).  Make this copied layer not visible in the map, but use it instead of the original layer in the legend. Uncheck the “Only display layers that are checked on in the Table of Contents” under Map Connection on the Layer Properties Items tab to draw this legend item.

Using line fills is tricky business, and when they're oriented to vertical, or near vertical, they are, frankly, unpleasant to look at.  A better option is to symbolize the original features using 45 or 135 degree hatches.  These are acceptable angles to use in that they are used in enough maps that are already out there, that these angles are expected, and they do not look unpleasant.  One other trick is to reduce some of the unpleasantness is to reduce the separation between the lines.

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