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I'm trying to create a political wall map. I've settled on the Natural Earth projection and thus have had problems with quite a few tools that don't support the projection (Tilemill, QGIS, Maperitive etc).

Trying to find out what the best approach is. Currently I think my best bet is to import my reprojected raster into Inkscape along with a raw SVG of my desired labels and do the label placement manually.

I am trying to generate proper SVG output from Mapnik for boundary lines and the raw labels for later adjustment, but so far I have been unsuccessful due to the size of the raster (21426x11141px). It simply crashes so far.

Since this is a personal project, investing in ArcGIS, Illustrator / MAPublisher seems a bit overkill.

Is there an easy way to convert my shp files into SVG for easy import into Inkscape - or is there a better approach than I am taking currently?

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As per Michael's comment - I went back and retested QGIS 2.8.2. After downloading GDAL development versions (2.1.0) and setting QGIS to use these instead of the bundled ones, I can use the Natural Earth projection.

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