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Editing Projects/Marble/MarbleGeoPainter

Hello Marble
Tutorial Series   Marble C++ Tutorial
Previous   Tutorial 1 - Hello World
What's Next   Tutorial 3 - Drawing in Custom Layers
Further Reading   n/a

In the previous tutorial, you saw how easy it is to embed a MarbleWidget in any Qt application: Just create a Marble::MarbleWidget, set a map theme on it and... you're done already.

Next we'll extend that example a bit and write our own little paint method to add some extra content to the globe. To facilitate this, Marble provides a painting hook called customPaint. It is called in between of the normal paint operations: After the background and tiles are painted, but before the top layers like float items (info boxes).

The customPaint operation is called with a GeoPainter: An extended QPainter which not only is able to paint at certain screen (pixel) positions, but also at certain geo (lat,lon) positions. We'll make use of that feature now. To keep things simple again, we just add a little 'Hello World' message indicated by a green circle.

  1. include <QtGui/QApplication>
  2. include <marble/MarbleWidget.h>
  3. include <marble/GeoPainter.h>

using namespace Marble;

class MyMarbleWidget : public MarbleWidget { public:

   virtual void customPaint(GeoPainter* painter);


void MyMarbleWidget::customPaint(GeoPainter* painter) {

   GeoDataCoordinates home(8.4, 49.0, 0.0, GeoDataCoordinates::Degree);
   painter->drawEllipse(home, 7, 7);
   painter->drawText(home, "Hello Marble!");


int main(int argc, char** argv) {

   QApplication app(argc,argv);
   MyMarbleWidget *mapWidget = new MyMarbleWidget;
   return app.exec();


Save the code above as my_marble.cpp and compile it:

g++ -I /usr/include/qt4/ -o my_marble my_marble.cpp -lmarblewidget -lQtGui

If things go fine, execute ./my_marble and you end up with a globe view similar to this: Marble-geopainter.png

There may be situations where customPaint() does not suit your needs. This can be the case when you don't want to paint at the very top position (above all other items), or when subclassing MarbleWidget is not possible for some reason. In that case, have a look at Tutorial 2b - Creating Custom Layers