I'm using the CustomTicks package, which is part of the LevelScheme package, for styling the FrameTicks in my plots. On some sides of the plot frame, I want to have FrameTicks without tick labels. The problem is that I get extra white space in the place where the tick labels used to be. (Here, I have produced the plots with LightGray background in order to highlight the cropping problem.)


plot = Plot[x, {x, 0, 1},
  Frame -> True, 
  FrameTicks -> {LinTicks[0, 1, ShowTickLabels -> False],LinTicks[0, 1]},
  Background -> LightGray

Plot with unwanted white space

I think that the problem arises because the nonlabeled ticks are created as "", as can be seen in FullForm[plot]. How can I achieve a result similar to Plot[x,{x,0,1},Frame->True], i.e., a tight cropping of the plot around its frame (see below) with customized FrameTicks?

I do not want to rasterize my plot; thus, ImageCrop is not an option.

Plot[x, {x, 0, 1},
  Frame -> True,
  Background -> LightGray

Correct cropping but with default <code>FrameTicks</code>

  • $\begingroup$ I didn't try it with this package, but does ImagePadding work? $\endgroup$
    – Ian
    Jan 23, 2014 at 4:03

1 Answer 1


You can achieve the desired effect with the ImagePadding option. The syntax is ImagePadding-> {{left,right},{bottom,top}}.

This does not require you to rasterize the graphic. It might mean that you have to work out the appropriate whitespace on the sides that DO have tick labels, though.

I do not have CustomTicks installed but here is a simple function that tries to work out how much space you need on the bottom and left sides, instead of having to guess.

maxLabelSpace[labels_?VectorQ, type_String, 
  opts : OptionsPattern[{Style}]] := 
 With[{dim = Switch[type, "Horizontal", 1, "Vertical", 2, _, 1]}, 
  Max[ImageDimensions[#][[dim]] & /@ (Rasterize /@ (Style[ToString@#, 
          Sequence @@ {opts}] & /@ labels))]]

You can then do:

Plot[Sin[x], {x, 0, 4}, Frame -> True, 
 FrameStyle -> 12, 
 ImagePadding -> {{maxLabelSpace[{-0.5, 0.5, 1}, "Horizontal", 
  FontFamily -> "Times", FontSize -> 12], 1}, {maxLabelSpace[Range[4], "Vertical",    
  FontFamily -> "Times", FontSize -> 12], 1}}]

enter image description here

Notice that I've set the ImagePadding on the non-labeled sides to be 1, not 0. This avoids the frame being cut off.

Exercises for the reader include extending the maxLabelSpace function to add a pixel or two of whitespace to the ImagePadding, if that's what you want, via another parameter. You could also write a custom plotting function that automatically captures ticks and OptionValue[FrameStyle] to pass to maxLabelSpace.


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