Tutorial: Introduction to Grid Graphics

Paul Murrell, Department of Statistics, The University of Auckland, New Zealand.


R is not only a powerful statistical graphics platform for generating statistical plots. R is also a general purpose graphics system. It is not only possible to produce a wide variety of plots. It is possible to produce an infinite variety of graphical images with R. This tutorial will present an introduction to the grid graphics package, a low-level graphics system that provides full access to the graphics facilities in R. Knowledge of this system will allow you to make arbitrary modications to plots produced by packages such as lattice and ggplot2 and it will allow you to produce a range of diagrams and data visualizations that is limited only by your imagination.


Entré (approx. 15 min): A peek under the hood of lattice and ggplot2 to see if grid is hiding underneath. Main (approx. 2 hrs, with 15 min break in middle): The fundamentals of grid This section will be illustrated and motivated by the task of producing a custom data visualization. There will also be small exercises for attendees to work on.

Dessert (approx. 15 min): Example applications of grid


This course will not be appropriate for complete R newbies. It will be assumed that the audience is familiar with R and comfortable writing R expressions. On the other hand, no statistical or graphical expertise will be required.

Attendees are expected to bring laptops with R installed so that they can attempt exercises or examples during the tutorial.

Workshop Materials

Watch this space! Please check back closer to the time for data sets and code related to the course.
Please check here for up to date tutorial resources.

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