Figure.grdview(grid, **kwargs)

Create 3-D perspective image or surface mesh from a grid.

Reads a 2-D grid file and produces a 3-D perspective plot by drawing a mesh, painting a colored/gray-shaded surface made up of polygons, or by scanline conversion of these polygons to a raster image. Options include draping a data set on top of a surface, plotting of contours on top of the surface, and apply artificial illumination based on intensities provided in a separate grid file.

Full option list at


  • B = frame

  • C = cmap

  • G = drapegrid

  • I = shading

  • J = projection

  • JZ = zsize

  • Jz = zscale

  • N = plane

  • Q = surftype

  • R = region

  • V = verbose

  • Wc = contourpen

  • Wf = facadepen

  • Wm = meshpen

  • X = xshift

  • Y = yshift

  • p = perspective

  • t = transparency

  • grid (str or xarray.DataArray) – The file name of the input relief grid or the grid loaded as a DataArray.

  • zscale/zsize (float or str) – Set z-axis scaling or z-axis size.

  • cmap (str) – The name of the color palette table to use.

  • drapegrid (str or xarray.DataArray) – The file name or a DataArray of the image grid to be draped on top of the relief provided by grid. [Default determines colors from grid]. Note that -Jz and -N always refers to the grid. The drapegrid only provides the information pertaining to colors, which (if drapegrid is a grid) will be looked-up via the CPT (see -C).

  • plane (float or str) – level[+gfill]. Draws a plane at this z-level. If the optional color is provided via the +g modifier, and the projection is not oblique, the frontal facade between the plane and the data perimeter is colored.

  • surftype (str) – Specifies cover type of the grid. Select one of following settings: 1. ‘m’ for mesh plot [Default]. 2. ‘mx’ or ‘my’ for waterfall plots (row or column profiles). 3. ‘s’ for surface plot. 4. ‘i’ for image plot. 5. ‘c’. Same as ‘i’ but will make nodes with z = NaN transparent. For any of these choices, you may force a monochrome image by appending the modifier +m.

  • contourpen (str) – Draw contour lines on top of surface or mesh (not image). Append pen attributes used for the contours.

  • meshpen (str) – Sets the pen attributes used for the mesh. You must also select -Qm or -Qsm for meshlines to be drawn.

  • facadepen (str) – Sets the pen attributes used for the facade. You must also select -N for the facade outline to be drawn.

  • shading (str) – Provide the name of a grid file with intensities in the (-1,+1) range, or a constant intensity to apply everywhere (affects the ambient light). Alternatively, derive an intensity grid from the input data grid reliefgrid via a call to grdgradient; append +aazimuth, +nargs, and +mambient to specify azimuth, intensity, and ambient arguments for that module, or just give +d to select the default arguments (+a-45+nt1+m0).

  • verbose (str) –

    Select verbosity level [Default is w], which modulates the messages written to stderr. Choose among 7 levels of verbosity:

    • q - Quiet, not even fatal error messages are produced

    • e - Error messages only

    • w - Warnings [Default]

    • t - Timings (report runtimes for time-intensive algorthms);

    • i - Informational messages (same as “verbose=True”)

    • c - Compatibility warnings

    • d - Debugging messages

  • xshift (str) – [a|c|f|r][xshift]. Shift plot origin in x-direction.

  • yshift (str) – [a|c|f|r][yshift]. Shift plot origin in y-direction. Full documentation is at

  • perspective (list or str) – '[x|y|z]azim[/elev[/zlevel]][+wlon0/lat0[/z0]][+vx0/y0]'. Select perspective view and set the azimuth and elevation angle of the viewpoint. Default is [180, 90]. Full documentation is at

  • transparency (float) – Set transparency level, in [0-100] percent range. Default is 0, i.e., opaque. Only visible when PDF or raster format output is selected. Only the PNG format selection adds a transparency layer in the image (for further processing).

Examples using pygmt.Figure.grdview