Most questions are about smoothing edges. I would like the opposite.

I have this map:


I would like a plugin/filter to make edges more rough. Something along this:


EDIT: I think the trouble I am getting (see comment below) is because of my bitmap tracing. Here's the options I am using. Please tell me if there's something wrong!



  • 1
    Have you tried with Smooth and Quick sketch or Gimpressionist? Basing on your example, this seems more a vector tool work. Is the original source a bitmap or a vector? In Inkscape you can convert the curves to lines, simplify the path and increase the width of the border (references are here). Or you can use the sketch effect. Commented Feb 9, 2016 at 9:02
  • @PaoloGibellini you are right - this is the job for a vectorial program. It actually fits my use case better as well. I ended up using Inkscape, and stroking it manually... If you'd like please post your comment as an answer and I will confirm it... Commented Feb 9, 2016 at 14:18

1 Answer 1


Basing on your example, this seems more a vector tool work.

If the original source is a vector, you can edit this with Inkscape. If the image is a bitmap, you can import and trace it (as in this example).

Now, you can edit the path, it's composed by nodes:


Select all the nodes and simplify the path by hitting Ctrl+L

simplified path

With the node selected, convert the lines in segments by hitting the proper icon:

hit it

Change the width of the stroke and obtain the final image:

too rough

Too rough? You can simplify less or adjust the nodes manually before convert the curves in lines:

less simplified

As alternative you can use the sketch effect (Path... Path effects... +):

add path effect

You can play with the parameters (it's one of the live path effects):


And obtain another rough image:

sketched image

  • Paolo, sorry for not commenting early. Been busy... But this was excellent, thanks!! Something weird is that after tracing the bitmap, and selecting the nodes, then I do simplify and instead of your beautiful image with nice nodes, I get this ugly thing... :P dropbox.com/s/retstafsgj9izb4/map.svg Commented Feb 15, 2016 at 23:39
  • I have added to my post, screenshots of my Trace dialog, which may be where the problem lies... Commented Feb 15, 2016 at 23:49
  • @RicardoCruz Your map is not ugly, in my opinion there is a kind of artistic. For a more accurate trace you can select Colors or Brightness steps in "Multiple scans" section of the parameters. And remember that you can avoid to trace and start from a pretty ready svg map of Europe. Commented Feb 16, 2016 at 8:58
  • But Paolo, what is strange is that the thickness from my lines is not uniform. They are not simple lines like yours, they seem to have curved thickness... it is hard to explain... I have upgraded already to the latest stable version; will try in a Windows workstation. (The problem with the other maps is that I want only continental contour, not countries. But I can also try to find a SVG version of such a map, yes.) Commented Feb 16, 2016 at 17:34
  • 1
    The thickness is uniform, but you have an inner path and an outer path, hence the strange effect. If you want only the continental contour, is very simple: you can try to start from the Wikimedia Common's svg map of Europe, ungroup it, remove the background rectangle, select the desired nations, scale them a little and perform an union. Commented Feb 16, 2016 at 20:04

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