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Title of script: Create an A4 Poster

Author: Arthi. A

Keywords: Document properties of Inkscape, Design the poster, Saving the poster in png and pdf

Visual Cue
Opening Slide Welcome to the Spoken Tutorial on “Create an A4 Poster” using Inkscape.
Learning Objectives (Slide) In this tutorial we will learn to
  • Change the Document properties
  • Design an A4 poster and
  • Save the poster in pdf
System requirement (Slide) To record this tutorial, I am using
  • Ubuntu Linux 12.04 OS
  • Inkscape version 0.48.4
Open Inkscape Let us open Inkscape.
Go to File >> New Go to File. Click on New.
Scroll or point to the various options. These are the default canvas sizes that are available.
Point to the canvas My canvas is, by default, in A4 size.

So I will leave it as it is. If it is not so on your machine, then select A4 size.

Go to Document properties Let us now change some settings.

Go to File. Click on Document properties.

Point to Document properties A dialog box opens up where we can find various tabs and options.

Let us learn about them one by one.

Click on the units one by one In the first tab, Page, click on the Default units drop down list.

As I click one-by-one, observe that the unit of the ruler changes.

Let me keep the unit as pixels.

Click on Background Background option helps to change the transparency and color of the background.

When we click on it, a new dialog box appears.

Select green color >> Alpha to 255 Move the RGB sliders to the left and right.
Move alpha slider To make the background colour visible on the canvas, move the alpha slider towards the right.

Now the transparency changes to the selected RGB values.

Point to the background color in the Document Properties box. Observe that the color on the background option in the Document properties window changes, as I move.
Change Alpha to 0 >>

Point to canvas

Bring the alpha slider back to the extreme left and close the dialog box.
Point to Page size options Under Page size, we find many options.

We can change the size of the canvas using these options, too.

As I click, observe the change in the canvas size.

Let us keep the page size as A4.

Click on Landscape >> Click on Portrait Orientation can be changed to either Portrait or Landscape.

Click on both the options and observe the change on the canvas.

Point to Width and Height parameters We can change the width and height of the canvas using the Width and Height parameters.
Click on the Units drop down list Click on the Units drop down list. Here we can change the units according to our requirement.

Let us now change the units to pixels.

Click on Resize page to content Click on Resize page to content option. The various available options opens up.
Point to the margins. We can set margins for all the sides here.

After setting the margins, one needs to click on the button Resize page to drawing or selection.

Point to Border option Next is the Border option. We can see 3 check-box options here.
Draw a circle in such a way that it is half in and half out of the canvas. To demonstrate these options, let me first draw an ellipse in this manner.
Point to first option The first option makes the page border, that is the border of the canvas, visible.
Uncheck and then check it once again Uncheck this option and observe that the borders disappear.

Then again, check the option and observe that the borders re-appear.

Click on the second option. Uncheck and check 2-3 times. The second option sets the border on top of the drawing, so that it is clearly visible.

Once again check and uncheck this option and observe what happens on the canvas.

Point to third option. Point to the right and top borders. The third option shows a shadow of the canvas on the right and bottom.

Notice here, the border to the right and bottom are thicker than the other two sides.

Uncheck and then check the third option. Uncheck the third option and observe that this shadow disappears.
Point to Border options We can use all these options according to our requirement and preference.
Point to Border color The Border color option allows us to decide the color of the border.

Let us leave the default border color as it is.


Click on Guides tab Next click on Guides tab.

Guides help you align text and graphic objects on the canvas.

You can create ruler guides here.

Drag a guideline Click on the vertical ruler and drag a guideline.
Point to Show guides Now check and uncheck the first option Show Guides .....

....and observe the guideline appears and disappears on the canvas.

Point to Guide color Guide color is the color of the guideline.
Point to Highlight color Highlight color is the color of the guideline when it is being dragged to a certain position.
Point to The default colours of the guide and the highlight are shown here.

You can change it as per your preference.

I will leave the default colors as they are.

Point to second option Snap guides while dragging option helps to snap the objects or bounding box to the nearest guidelines, while dragging.
Click on the Grids tab Next, click on the Grids tab.

Using this option, we can set the grid that appears behind the artwork on the canvas.

Grids are useful to position objects on the canvas but they do not get printed.

Click on the drop down list Click on the drop down list.

Rectangular grid and Axonometric grid are the two types of grids available.

Select Rectangular grid >> Click on New Select Rectangular grid and click on the New button.

Immediately, a grid is formed on the canvas background.

Point to grid properties We can set the grid properties as per our requirement, using the available options.
Click on Remove We can remove the grid by clicking on the Remove button at the bottom.
Point to Axonometric grid In a similar way, you can try the options for Axonometric grid, too.
Point to the last 3 tabs The options in the next 3 tabs will be covered in the advanced level tutorials in this series.


Delete the ellipse. Now let us start creating the poster.

So, first let me delete the ellipse and the guideline.

Click on the Rectangle tool >>

Draw a rectangle covering the whole canvas

For our poster, we will first design a background.

So, click on the Rectangle tool.

Draw a large rectangle that covers the whole canvas.

Color it with light blue gradient.

Draw a header illustration Next,
  • draw a header area on the top
  • and a footer area at the bottom of the canvas,

using the Bezier tool.

We will color it blue.

Let us import the Spoken Tutorial logo now.
  • This logo has been provided to you in the Code Files link.
  • So, first of all, pause the tutorial, click on Code Files and download the zip file.
  • Now unzip the folder and save it in your preferred location on your machine.
Go to File >> Import >> Open Now come back to our Inkscape document.

Go to File menu. Click on Import.

Go to folder where the logo is saved.

Select the Spoken Tutorial logo and click on Open.

Click on OK >> Point to the logo A new dialog box opens up. Click on OK.

Now the logo is imported on our canvas.

Resize logo to 100x100 pixels Resize it to 100×100 pixels.

Place it on the top left corner of the header area.

Type “Spoken Tutorial” >> change font to 40 Now type the text “Spoken Tutorial”. Make it Bold. Change the text font size to 48.

Place it to the right of the logo.

Type the sentence “partner with bridge the digital divide After this, type the text “partner with bridge the digital divide”.

Change the font size to 20.<<PAUSE>>

Copy and paste text from LibreOffice Writer Next let us add some text.

I have already saved a sample text in a LibreOffice Writer document on my machine.

This sample text has been provided to you in the Code Files.

Pls use locate it in your saved folder.

Now, I will copy and paste this text in the empty space on my poster.

Select the text >> Font size to 28 >> Set line spacing >> create bullets
  • Change the font size to 28.
  • Set the line spacing.
  • Create bullets and place before each sentence.
Import images We will add 2 images below that.

As before, import them one by one.

I have saved them in the images folder.

These images have been provided to you in the Code Files.

Pls locate them in your saved folder.

Select all >> resize to 400×400 pixels Select the images and resize them.

Move them to the bottom area of the poster.

Copy and paste Contact details from LibreOffice Writer Let us write the contact details at the footer area.

Once again, copy and paste the text from LibreOffice Writer document.

Change the font size to 18.

Point to the poster Now, our poster is ready. Next let us learn how to save it in pdf format.
Go to File >> Save As >> Go to File and click on Save As.

A dialog box appears.

Click on Desktop Choose the folder in which you want to save.

I will choose Desktop.

Change the format to pdf >> Spoken Tutorial Poster.pdf >> Save Change the format to pdf by clicking on the drop-down list at the bottom right of the dialog box.

Here, in the Name field type Spoken-Tutorial-Poster.pdf

Then click on Save button.

Now our poster is saved in the Desktop.
Go to desktop >> open pdf Let us go to our Desktop and check our poster.

Now we have the poster in pdf format.

Summary (Slide) Let us summarize. In this tutorial we learnt to
  • Change the Document properties
  • Design an A4 poster
  • Saving the poster in pdf
Completed assignment Here is an assignment for you.
  • Create an A4 poster for Spoken Tutorial Project.
Completed assignment Your completed assignment should look like this.
About Slide The video available at the following link summarizes the Spoken Tutorial project. Please watch it.
About Slide The Spoken Tutorial Project Team conducts workshops and gives certificates for those who pass an online test.

For more details, please write to us.

About Slide Spoken Tutorial Project is supported by the NMEICT, MHRD, Government of India.

More information on this Mission is available at this link.

Acknowledgment We have come to the end of this tutorial.

This is Arthi and Saurabh from IIT Bombay, signing off. Thanks for joining.

Contributors and Content Editors

Arthi, Nancyvarkey