So I'm making this nice map with a lot of labels which are going to end up in a book. Since the labels doesn't end up exactly where I want them I'd like to move them some in Illustrator after exporting them using the Print composer. The only problem is that when exporting to PDF the text is not text anymore, QGIS transforms it into paths instead of leaving the font alone.

Does anyone know a workaround so the labels stays as fonts when opening the image in Illustrator?

  • Not sure what you mean by "paths"? There is a setting to print as raster, normally this is off, which is how you should have it. – Willy Apr 7 '14 at 10:27
  • The text breaks down into vector graphics instead of a font object. For instance now it's impossible to switch font in Illustrator since they all are just vector paths. – oskarlin Apr 7 '14 at 10:41
  • I am not familiar with Illustrator, I use nitroPDF and it reproduces the fonts fine and allows editing. You might also try Inkscape and the GIMP but I can't speak from experience about them. Which font in particular? – Willy Apr 7 '14 at 10:46
  • See the QGIS ticket hub.qgis.org/issues/3975 – Mapperz Apr 7 '14 at 13:43
  • @Willy Illustrator can convert fonts into paths which can remove issues when moving pdf files to other companies without the original font (licencing maybe required to share third party fonts) – Mapperz Apr 7 '14 at 13:45

This has been an issue for a while, ever since the new labeling engine has been used. Recently, the development version of QGIS has a new render setup that allows this bug to be reasonably fixed.

See: http://hub.qgis.org/issues/3975

The fixed code changes are up for review for inclusion into the core codebase. When that happens, the feature will be available in the nightly releases, for testing.

There are still some scaling and font-embedding issues to be ironed out, but the feature essentially works now. Regardless, the fix should make it into the next release (QGIS 2.4).

  • Thanks! And you're the one making the nightly ones for Mac? – oskarlin Apr 7 '14 at 22:02
  • Oh and also, this feature will not be in 2.3? How long do I need to wait for 2.4 then? Oh my... – oskarlin Apr 8 '14 at 9:47
  • It will be in 2.3 (development version) prior to 2.4 release. Yes, I manage the nightly builds for Mac. – dakcarto Apr 9 '14 at 6:25
  • Could you do a shout out here when the feature is in the nightly builds? Or is it already? – oskarlin Apr 9 '14 at 7:37
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    Should be in nightlies in about a week or so, though there will be scaling issues until we work through adding more unit tests. It is going to be integrated with a better SVG export functionality. – dakcarto Apr 10 '14 at 14:58

Instead of exporting as a .pdf, export it as a .svg this will allow you to edit all the text and the lines in illustrator. To get the text at the same size, in Qgis and illustrator you can set the size in points, not map units and it will show up witht the same font size in illustrator.

  • The only problem will be that some items will appear outside of the print area and will require a bit of tidying up in illustrator – Richie Burns Apr 8 '14 at 9:16
  • Even when I export as SVG the fonts turn into vectors that can't be edited as a font. I have use version 2.2. – oskarlin Apr 8 '14 at 9:37
  • How are you labelling your features? I label mine using the Layer Properites and Labels (deprecated), then I choose which attribute I want to be labelled. Either that or I create a new point layer and have that as a labelling layer, it also lets me move the labels around – Richie Burns Apr 8 '14 at 9:41
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    Apparently the old label engine doesn't create vectors. Unfortunately the new one does. Using 2.2 here. You? – oskarlin Apr 8 '14 at 10:25
  • Yes, I am using 2.2 and my text comes out as editable text in illustrator. Although i dont use the labels option, i use Labels (deprecated) – Richie Burns Apr 8 '14 at 10:35

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