[R] Boxplot Fill Pattern

Michael Friendly friendly at yorku.ca
Fri Mar 9 15:14:02 CET 2012

On 3/8/2012 1:08 PM, Gabriel Yospin wrote:
> I would like to make a legible boxplot of tree growth rates for each of
> seven tree species at each of seven different sites. It's a lot of data to
> put on one figure, I know. I made a beautiful, interpretable figure using
> color, but my target journal can't deal with color figures. I can use seven
> shades of grey to fill the boxes, but the figure then becomes

If you print your original figure (with the legend) in B/W, you'll see 
that the shading levels are not too bad -- they are relatively 
distinguishable except for Acer and Pinus/

Thus, one thing I often do in this situation is design a graph so that
it will render reasonably well also in B/W and suggest to the journal
to make a color version available online (or I put it on my own web).

Your final version using ggplot2 is a far worse graph, IMHO
because the labels are illegible, and using no fill in the boxplots
makes it impossible to distinguish the same species across sites.
You could
make it better by
(a) only labeling the species in alternate site panels
(b) rotating those labels by 45^o
(c) using some fill for the boxes

My .05

Michael Friendly     Email: friendly AT yorku DOT ca
Professor, Psychology Dept.
York University      Voice: 416 736-5115 x66249 Fax: 416 736-5814
4700 Keele Street    Web:   http://www.datavis.ca
Toronto, ONT  M3J 1P3 CANADA

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