I have two Interstate labels on my map which appear to be different sizes even though they are the same font size and have the same marker text background size. The labels have been converted into annotation.

This is a screenshot of my problem. As you can see, one of the Interstate signs is smaller in size and font than the second one

I am using ArcMap 10.2. What could be the problem?

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    Which software are you using? – ArMoraer Mar 2 '16 at 15:35
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    Welcome to GIS:SE @Luke Tia Could you please edit your question to include more details such as what the Python error message reads, QGIS version, screenshots etc? – whyzar Mar 2 '16 at 15:36
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    could you include a screen shot? – Ian Turton Mar 2 '16 at 15:42
  • Thank you for the questions. I will add information on the software and a screenshot of the problem. – Luke Tia Mar 2 '16 at 15:48

I've experienced issues similar to this while using ArcMap 10.x. When I've changed the size of the map document after I developed the map with symbols and labels. Let me explain further.

For example, my supervisor needs a map to be created on 8 1/2 x 11 paper, I work on the layers, add labels (converted to annotation) and the map is about ready to go.

Then he updates me that it need to be on 11 x 17, so instead of starting from scratch I decide to go to my print settings and adjust the map to 8 1/2 x 11 to 11 x 17 then going to layout view and adjusting the borders on the map canvass to fit the new size that I have chosen.

Everything appears normal until I need to update the labels and all the units appear off. The labels now appear in different sizes even though I'm adjust the font size to equal the same. That one issue that could be causing your situation, you might have adjusted your map layout and that doesn't bode well for the resizing of the font/label/symbology on your map.

This post in GIS SE gives further insight on things to consider in general for your labels.


One thing I have noticed when I do the labels on my maps on either Data or Layout Vierw they tend to go big or small when you look at them. Here is what I do first is to set the scale you want in the Layout View. You can add the scale number to the list by scroll down to "Customize This List.. so you can add the scale number you want to set to. Then switch to Data View and set the scale you just set in Layout View. You will see how the size results are in between the two view. So, I fixed it in the Data View and the switch back to Layout View.

Yes, I know it is pain but it really helps me to know what you can see the label size in the Layout View. This is a good one if you are working in small project like I do for Campground sites.

You can also use the bookmark to set your scale this way whenever you move in either Data View or Layout View, you can return to the original scale you like. This is also very helpful too.


If you're using Maplex, then inspect the settings on the "Reduce font size" option under the fitting strategy tab of the placement properties dialog.

If you're not using Maplex, I suggest using it and then ensuring that this option is not checked.

With the revelation that you've already converted your labels to annotation, I would still recommend going back to this stage and then re-creating the annotation.

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