Currently, Inkscape does not have multipage support. The main reason is that the current SVG standard does not support multipage documents. This feature was proposed in the SVG revision 1.2, but for now got dropped in the next coming version SVG 2.0.
This page discusses how the feature can (or should) be implemented:
- There should be multiple pages within a document.
- There are two contrary implementations in the real world:
- distribute pages around the graphics elements - the Adobe way
- distribute graphics elements around the pages - how Corel does it and how SVG proposes to do it
- New problems arise when saving to singlepage file formats (jpg, png, etc).
Multipage in the SVG 1.2 standard (dropped)
- All pages are contained within a single pageSet element. A pageSet may contain any number of page elements. Each page element defines a single container of graphical objects.
- In a screen-based user agent, only one page element is displayed at any time on the main canvas.
- The SVG content typically defines a page dimension or aspect ratio in the topmost svg element and its viewBox. The viewBox transformation applies to printed SVG in the same way as screen display.
- The orientation of each page element can be controlled by the page-orientation property. This enables the content to define whether a portrait or landscape mode is used for display and printing.
Multipage à la Corel
- There is a list of pages as tabs on the lower side of the drawing window.
- All pages share the same page properties.
- A master page contains elements that are visible on all other pages: drawings, markers
- In an object browser, pages and layers are integrated.
See [this screeshot].
Multicanvas (similar to multi-Artboard on adobe illustrator cs4).
Multicanvas solution is not the same as pages and can't follow the SVG pageSet spec. The multicanvas, as the multi-artboard, can (frequently must) have different sizes and can be freely placed on the 2D space. A canvas may overlap a part other canvas.
Each canvas can be printed independently and that feature helps to unify the art conception for the most applications of an art project.
- see this adobe tutorial [here]
- there is an [video] by Valessio Brito presenting an UI mockup how multipage can be handled in inkscape
The multicanvas feature may be incompatible with the multipage feature, so, the user may chose the working mode on the "document properties" dialog. The default must be multipage and that will show the page tabs on the interface and the "new page" button, when selecting multicanvas that will show the canvas controls and the "new canvas" button.
Feature request registered: https://bugs.launchpad.net/inkscape/+bug/671081
Developer lixapopescu created a inkscape extension in 2011 which hacked into inkscape some multi page support. https://sourceforge.net/projects/inkscape-pages/
The design is based on using layers as the basis for pages and it's a useful hack if the svg specification will always not include pages.
- Some planning was done in this thread.
- All export dialogues must get extra properties in order to handle multiple pages, e.g. for specifying not only the elements, but also the pages to be exported.