Science and technology

How I automate graphics creation with Inkscape

I recorded a 15-minute long tutorial demonstrating learn how to automate the manufacturing of graphics from a CSV file or spreadsheet (principally a mailmerge kind deal for graphics) in Inkscape. It makes use of the Next Generator Inkscape extension from Maren Hachmann. 

You can watch it on the Fedora Design Team Linux Rocks PeerTube channel (PeerTube is open supply!) or the embedded YouTube video beneath:

In this text, I present some context for a way this tutorial is beneficial. I additionally embody a really high-level abstract of the content material within the video in case you’d quite skim textual content and never watch a video.

Conference discuss card graphics

Each Flock/Nest wants a graphic for every discuss for the net platform you utilize to host a digital convention. There are normally about 50 or extra talks for big occasions like this. That’s a number of graphics to supply manually.

With this tutorial, you learn to make a template like this in Inkscape:

(Máirín Duffy, CC BY-SA 4.0)

And a CSV file like this:

BestCon The Pandas Are Marching Beefy D. Miracle
Fedora Nest Why Fedora is the Best Linux Colúr and Badger
BambooFest 2022 Bamboo Tastes Better with Fedora Panda
AwesomeCon The Best Talk You Ever Heard Dr. Ver E. Awesome

Combine them to generate one graphic per row within the CSV, like so:

(Máirín Duffy, CC BY-SA 4.0)

Conference graphics are a very good instance of how one can apply this tutorial. You may additionally use it to generate enterprise playing cards (it outputs a PDF), personalised birthday invites, personalised graphics for college students in your classroom (like pupil identify playing cards for his or her desks), and signage on your workplace. You can use it to create graphics for labeling objects, too. You may even use it to create superior banners and graphics for Fedora as a member of the Fedora Design Team! There are a ton of prospects for how one can apply this system, so let your creativeness soar.

Open multimedia and artwork sources

The Inkscape Next Generator extension

The first step to create these pictures is to put in the Next Generator extension for Inkscape created by Maren Hachmann:

  1. Go to the web site and obtain the next_gen.inx and from the highest degree of the repo.
  2. Then go into the Edit > Preferences > System dialog in Inkscape. Search for the User Extensions listing itemizing and click on the Open icon. Drag the .inx and .py recordsdata into that folder.
  3. Finally, you must shut all open Inkscape home windows and restart Inkscape. The new extension is below the Extensions menu: Extensions > Export > Next Generator.

Create a template

Each header of your CSV file (in my instance: ConferenceIdentify, TalkIdentify, PresenterNames) is a variable you possibly can place in an Inkscape file that serves as your template. Take a look at the example SVG template file for instructions. If you need the TalkIdentify to seem in your template, create a textual content object in Inkscape and put the next content material into it:


When you run the extension, the %VAR_TalkIdentify% textual content is changed with the TalkIdentify listed for every row of the CSV. So for the primary row, %VAR_TalkIdentify% is changed with the textual content The Pandas Are Marching for the primary graphic. For the second graphic, the TalkIdentify is Why Fedora is the Best Linux. You proceed doing this till you get to the TalkIdentify column for every graphic.

Run the generator

Once your template is prepared, run the Next Generator extension by loading your CSV. Then, choose which variables (header names) you wish to use in every file identify and hit the Apply button.

In a future article, I’ll present a tutorial on extra superior use of this extension, like altering colours and graphics included in every file.

This article was initially printed on the creator’s blog and has been republished with permission.

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