Tableau assigns default formatting to chart elements. In this video, learn how to format chart elements.
- [Instructor] When you create a chart or other visualization in Tableau the program applies its built-in formatting to your creation. As with most every other aspect of a Tableau viz, you can format your chart's elements to emphasis aspects of your data or just to provide the appearance that you want. In this movie I will provide an overview of some of the ways that you can format elements in your chart. My sample file's 11 02 FormatChart and you can find it in the chapter 11 folder of your exercise files collection. In this workbook I have a line graph that shows sales by quarter. And let's say that I want to change the formatting of the line in my chart. To do that I click the line to select it, I also select the nearest point, but don't worry about that now, then on the Marks card I can, if I want to change the color, for example, click the Color square. And from here I can select a color for the line. So instead of blue, let's say I go to the right and click gray. And you can see that that color has been applied. If I want a little more contrast I can go to orange. So I'll click the top orange there and you can see that the color is the one that I selected. If you want to have more control over your colors and not just the standard palette click the More colors button and then you can select from a wide variety of basic colors or, if you want, you can go over to the RGB field and click the color that you want and change the shading using this slider here on the right. Or if you have either the hue, saturation, and value or the RGB, red, green, blue component, or the HTML hex value for your color you can enter those in to any of those boxes. In this case I don't want to make any changes, so I'll just click Cancel. There are other elements that you can change at the bottom, including the way that markers are displayed. I'll just leave those for your own experimentation. I'm done changing color, so I'll click away. And I can also change the size of the line. So I'll click the line again and then go to the Marks card and click Size and here I will drag the slider and when I release it you can see that the line is now thicker than it was. If I drag it back then it's a bit thinner. So you have quite a bit of control with this slider. If you want, you can also display labels for the individual points on the line. So I'll click away, make sure the line is selected again, click Label. And if I want to display mark labels I just check the Show mark labels box and they appear. You can change their appearance, for example, by changing their font. So if we go to Tableau Book nine, let's say that I stay with that font, and I just make them a little larger, go up to 10, and bold. So there you see those values changing in the back. If you want you can also edit the axes of the visualization. In this case, the Y or vertical axis is Order Total and it goes with values from zero to 200,000, 400,000, and then a million at the top, which is 1,000 1,000. To edit the axis I will right-click anywhere on it and then click Edit Axis. That displays the Edit Axis dialog box. I haven't made any changes to this visualization since I created it, so I have an Automatic Range. Although if I wanted I could have a Uniform Axis Range for all rows and columns. They could be Independent, or they could be Fixed. If I select the Fixed radio button then I could have a Fixed start and a Fixed end and I can define them. So that allows me to control the axis. In this case I'll just stay with Automatic, so I'll select that radio button. The Scale allows me to control how the numbers are displayed and calculated on the y-axis. So I have Reversed, which would have the smallest numbers up top, and then I can also do Logarithmic, which is used for scientific data. Below that I have Axis Titles, so if I want to change from Order Total, for example, by clicking in the Title box I can change from Order Total to Total Sales. And if I wanted, I could also add a Subtitle. If I want to undo my changes I can click the Reset button. On the Tick Marks tab I can have Automatic Tick Marks, which are basically marks that show the increments. So currently those are Automatic and I have them in million intervals, so I have a line, a horizontal line at zero and another at million. And my Minor Tick Marks, which are not as visible, start at zero and have an interval of 100,000. And I think that's appropriate. So I won't make any more changes, I'll just go ahead and close this dialog box. And click a blank spot on the viz to release the selection of the axis. One final thing that I'd like to show you is adding drop lines. And drop lines draw lines to the horizontal and vertical axes from a point. So, for example, if I right-click the 646,952 point here for Q2 2018 I can go down about 2/3 of the way down, point to Drop Lines, and click Show Drop Lines. And you can see that I have lines drawn to my horizontal and vertical axes. This is a terrific tool for calling out a specific value and where they fall within the data range. You can also edit these drop lines. So if you right-click the point again you can point to Drop Lines, click Edit Drop Lines, and this will allow you to control whether you want to see the drop down to the X and left, or right I guess, to the Y. And have them appear only when the point is selected or all the time. And also whether it has labels or not. In this case I'll leave the configuration the way I have, so I'll click Cancel. And when I click away the drop lines disappear. There are many, many different ways that you can format elements in charts. The techniques I showed you are specific to the elements that I was working with, but the basic idea is that you right-click an element, use the Edit option, and then take advantage of the tools that are displayed for you.
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