Paul Norman edited this page Aug 7, 2014 · 5 revisions
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Using Custom Fonts with Mapnik

Doing this requires three steps:

1) Place custom fonts in Mapnik's font folder or register them in different location


Find the location of Mapnik's special font folder and place new fonts in it:

    $ python -c "import mapnik;print mapnik.fontscollectionpath"

Or register a custom location:

    import mapnik
    custom_fonts_dir = '/Library/Fonts/'


We are planning to add registration support within XML in #168

  • Also, the Nik2Img allows you to pass the --fonts argument to register custom fonts when reading and XML


    mapnik::freetype_engine::register_font(std::string const& file_name)

...where file_name is the full path to the directory where the font is located (e.g., "/home/user/mapnik/fonts/unifont-Medium.ttf"). The c++ demo (source:trunk/demo/c++/rundemo) also provides an good example of how to add additional fonts.

2) Figure out the exact 'face_name'

  • Ask Mapnik to print all registered face names (note: this only will show fonts already auto-registered in the fontscollectionpath):
    python -c "from mapnik import FontEngine as e;print '\n'.join(e.instance().face_names())"
    DejaVu Sans Bold
    DejaVu Sans Bold Oblique
    DejaVu Sans Book
    DejaVu Sans Condensed
    DejaVu Sans Condensed Bold
  • Or, register custom fonts and then show their face names:
    from mapnik import register_fonts, FontEngine
    custom_fonts_dir = '/Library/Fonts/'
    for face in FontEngine.face_names(): print face
    Al Bayan Bold
    Al Bayan Plain
    Andale Mono Regular
    Arial Black Regular

3) Pass the 'face_name' to the TextSymbolizer or ShieldSymbolizer

    <TextSymbolizer name="FIELD_NAME" face_name="DejaVu Sans Condensed Bold" size="10" fill="black" />

Further references