Skip to content
Switch branches/tags
Go to file
Cannot retrieve contributors at this time
title: "Alignment Across Multiple Pages"
fig_width: 6
fig_height: 4
vignette: >
%\VignetteIndexEntry{Alignment Across Multiple Pages}
```{r, include = FALSE}
collapse = TRUE,
comment = "#>"
```{r setup}
While patchwork is mainly a package for creating plot compositions, it also
contains infrastructure for a related, but distinct task: Aligning plots across
Consider the task where you are preparing a slideshow containing a range of
figures. Optimally you'd want plots that don't *"jump around"* as you switch
between slides, but different axis text, legends, strips, etc. can make that
difficult. We'll illustrate this with our standard plots:
p1 <- ggplot(mtcars) +
geom_point(aes(mpg, disp)) +
ggtitle('Plot 1')
p2 <- ggplot(mtcars) +
geom_boxplot(aes(gear, disp, group = gear)) +
ggtitle('Plot 2')
p3 <- ggplot(mtcars) +
geom_point(aes(hp, wt, colour = mpg)) +
ggtitle('Plot 3')
p4 <- ggplot(mtcars) +
geom_bar(aes(gear)) +
facet_wrap(~cyl) +
ggtitle('Plot 4')
Notice how `p1` and `p3` doesn't align when rendered at the same size:
```{r, animation.hook='gifski'}
We can make one of the plots align with the other by extracting the dimensions
from one plot, and applying it to the other:
```{r, animation.hook='gifski'}
p3_dims <- get_dim(p3)
p1_aligned <- set_dim(p1, p3_dims)
A nice thing about the implementation is that aligned plots retain the ggplot
nature after the dimensions have been applied, and can thus continue to be added to:
p1_aligned + theme_minimal()
Often we don't have a single plot that everything else should be aligned to.
Notice the havoc we wreck when we try to align `p4` to `p3`:
set_dim(p4, p3_dims)
Because `p3` doesn't have any strips the title on `p4` will be placed too close
to them in order to be aligned with the title of `p3`. What we want is to
extract some dimensions that are large enough to accommodate all the different
features in a set of plots. We can do just that with `get_max_dim()`:
max_dims <- get_max_dim(p1, p2, p3, p4)
set_dim(p4, max_dims)
We can now see that the title in the other plots have been raised to make room
for the strips present in `p4`:
set_dim(p2, max_dims)
Usually you'll have a list of plots and simply want to align all of these
before rendering them to a file. All of the operations above have been wrapped
in the `align_patches()` function:
```{r, animation.hook='gifski'}
plots_aligned <- align_patches(p1, p2, p3, p4)
for (p in plots_aligned) {
## Want more?
Multipage alignment is just a small part of patchwork. Check out the other
guides to learn about [assembling plots](assembly.html),
[specifying layouts](layout.html), and
[annotating the results](annotation.html).