Maps are added to layouts using map frames, which can point to any map or scene in the project, or to no map at all. Once a map frame has been created, the map it points to can be updated at any time. Extent indicators and grids can be added to the map frame, providing additional information to the layout.
The extent of the map in a map frame is unique and independent of any map view that is open in the project. This means zooming or panning in an open map view does not change the extent of the map on the layout. To change the extent, or make other modifications to the map contained in a map frame, you must activate the map. You can also control how the extent is changed by setting a map frame constraint.
While the map extent of each map frame is independent of other map frames, the contents of a map frame's map are not. A map frame is just like having another map view open. For example, if you select some features on a map, those features are selected in all open views of that map—including in map frames. Likewise, if you turn off a layer in one view, it turns off in all views. Layer properties cannot be set per view.
Insert a map frame
Complete the following steps to add a map frame to your layout:
- On the Insert tab, in the Map Frames group, select a map frame shape from the drop-down menu.
A rectangular or square map frame of any dimensions. This is the default.
A map frame composed of connecting straight lines sketched on the layout.
A map frame composed of a continuous curved line or straight lines sketched on the layout.
A circular map frame of any dimensions.
A curved map frame in which the vertical diameter is longer than the horizontal diameter or vice versa.
- On the Insert tab, in the Map Frames group, click Map Frame .
A gallery of maps and scenes from the project displays, including all open map views and bookmarks associated with each map. Choose <None> to create an empty map frame. Empty map frames are useful when creating layout files to use as templates.
- Choose the map view, scene view, or bookmark for your map frame.
- On the layout, click and drag to create the map frame.
The map frame is added to the layout at the extent chosen.
The scale of the map may change to preserve the extent. You can adjust the scale by clicking the Scale drop-down menu at the bottom of the layout view and choosing or typing a new scale.
You can also create a map frame by dragging a map from the Catalog pane onto the layout. This map is added as a rectangle map frame at the default map extent.
Change the map in the map frame
You can change the map referenced by a map frame at any time. Many elements, such as north arrows and scale bars, are linked to map frames on the layout. If you change the map referenced by the map frame or adjust the map extent, these elements automatically update. To change the map, right-click the map frame in the Contents pane and choose Properties . The Element pane appears. On the Options tab , under Map, choose a different map or scene from the drop–down menu. You can also choose <None> to create an empty map frame. When you change the map referenced by a map frame, the map draws at the default extent. You can then activate the map to adjust the extent.
Modify a map frame
After you've inserted a map frame, you can make changes to its appearance and properties.
Reshape a map frame
A map frame can be reshaped so a rectangular map frame can become circular and vice versa. To reshape a map frame, complete the following steps:
- Choose the map frame you want to reshape in the Contents pane or on the layout view.
- On the Map Frame tab, in the Edit group, click the Reshape drop-down menu and choose a draw tool. The following shapes are available.
Reshape using a rectangular or square draw tool.
Reshape using connecting straight lines sketched on the layout.
Reshape using a continuous curved line or straight lines sketched on the layout.
Reshape using a circular draw tool.
Reshape using a curved draw tool in which the vertical diameter is longer than the horizontal diameter or vice versa.
- Draw a new frame shape over the existing map frame using your chosen tool.
The extent of your map frame adjusts to the new map frame shape. If you have a map frame constraint set, the extent adjusts according to the constraint.
Modify the border, background, or shadow
As with other layout elements, a map frame can have a border, background, and a shadow. By default, new map frames are added with a 1 pt black border, and the map's background color is applied as the map frame background. To change either of these, or add a shadow, complete the following steps:
- Right-click the map frame in the Contents pane or layout view and choose Properties from the context menu to open the Element pane.
- In the Element pane, click the Display tab .
- Adjust the border, background, and shadow properties as desired.
Because the map's background color is automatically applied as the map frame background, if you want to use a different background, first uncheck the Use map background color option on the Options tab of the Element pane.