How do I export to PDF or SVG files? I tried the SimpleSVG plugin and it consistently gives me an error message.

SimpleSVG Plugin Error Message

Then I tried to print to PDF, but it comes up blank and I can't figure out what I'm doing wrong.

I'm on a Mac running 10.11.16 "El Capitan" and using QGIS 2.18.2 "Las Palmas"

The end goal is to get something I can edit in Adobe Illustrator (I have Illustrator CS5 and IllustratorCC and IllustratorCS2)

  • Another good program you can edit SVG files is Inkscape, which is an open source software. Apr 17, 2017 at 19:30

2 Answers 2


If you want to export to PDF then you will need to create a composer window first. 'File'-> 'New Print Composer'. Once you have done this and have a new print composer then you can add a map. The final step is to export the composer to PDF 'File'-> 'Export to PDF'.

The print composer is where you can add your map legend, north arrow, scale, title, etc. You can export files as an SVG, PDF, or Image.

Here is a link to help you further understand if you still don't get it:



Probably the most advanced and reliable way is pre-export project to DXF. You can select QGIS layers of visible area and preserve them in a layered dxf file. Then open .dxf in Adobe Illustrator to re-set colors and export the map to SVG with paths grouped according to their layers.

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