Edit annotation to follow a feature

The Edit Annotation tool Edit Annotation includes commands to constrain a selected annotation feature to follow the edge of a line or polygon feature. You can constrain standard annotation and feature-linked annotation. This tool is available on the Modify Features pane.


Editing feature-linked annotation to follow a different feature doesn't change its existing relationship with the feature to which it is linked.

To constrain an annotation feature to follow the edge of a line or polygon feature, complete the following steps:

  1. On the Edit tab, choose your snapping preferences, and show the Modify Features pane.
    1. In the Snapping group, click the Snapping drop-down menu List By Snapping and enable your snapping preferences.

      To temporarily turn snapping off while you edit a feature, press and hold the Spacebar.

    2. In the Features group, click Modify Modify Features.
  2. Expand Alignment and click Annotation Edit Annotation.

    The tool opens in the pane.

  3. In the pane, click Select Annotation Select Annotation and select the annotation feature.
    • To refine the selection, right-click a feature in the tree view, and click Unselect Clear Selected or Only Select This List By Selection.
      Context Menu

    A selection graphic appears around the selected annotation feature.

    Edit annotation

  4. To specify or change the orientation of the text relative to the feature to which it is constrained, right-click and click Follow Feature Options Options, or press O.

    These settings are also available in the annotation project options for editing.

    Annotation Options

  5. Constrain the text to follow a feature:

    Selecting an annotation feature that is currently following a feature automatically sets the tool to Follow Feature Mode. In this case, you can immediately drag and reposition the text.

    1. Right-click an edge or segment of the feature to follow.
    2. Click Follow This Feature Follow This Feature.
    • To remove the constraint, right-click and uncheck Follow Feature Mode.
  6. Drag and reposition the text:
    1. Hover over the text until the move pointer appears.

      Example of follow feature mode

    2. Drag the text along the feature boundary.

      To drag the text away from the feature, press Ctrl while dragging.

  7. To finish your edits, click Finish Finish or press the F2 key.

    Editing toolbar

Keyboard shortcuts

Keyboard shortcutActionComment

Ctrl and drag

Change the Follow Feature distance.

In Follow Feature mode, change the distance between the annotation feature and the boundary feature.


Follow Feature Options

In Follow Feature mode, change settings for text alignment, placement constraints, and other annotation options.

Keyboard shortcuts for editing annotation

In this topic
  1. Keyboard shortcuts