Combine Base R, ggplot2 & lattice Plots (2 Examples)

 

This article shows how to create a grid of Base R, ggplot2, and lattice plots in the R programming language.

The article will contain two examples for the creation of a grid of Base R, ggplot2, and lattice plots. To be more precise, the post looks as follows:

If you want to learn more about these topics, keep reading.

 

Exemplifying Data, Software Packages & Basic Plot

We’ll use the data below as basement for this tutorial:

data <- data.frame(x = 1:6,                           # Create example data
                   y = c(3, 1, 4, 2, 5, 3))
data                                                  # Print example data

 

table 1 data frame combine base r ggplot2 lattice plots

 

As you can see based on Table 1, our exemplifying data is a data frame containing six observations and the two columns “x” and “y”. The variable x is an integer and the variable y has the numeric class.

Now, we can plot the data using Base R as shown below:

plot(data$x, data$y, type = "l")                      # Create Base R plot

 

r graph figure 1 combine base r ggplot2 lattice plots

 

In Figure 1 it is shown that we have created a line plot using the basic installation of the R programming language by running the previous R programming code.

Next, we have to save this plot in a data object using the recordPlot function:

my_base <- recordPlot()                               # Save Base R plot

Next, we have to create a ggplot2 plot. In order to use the functions of the ggplot2 package, we also need to install and load ggplot2 to RStudio:

install.packages("ggplot2")                           # Install & load ggplot2 package
library("ggplot2")

We can now create a ggplot2 plot object as shown below:

my_ggplot <- ggplot(data, aes(x, y)) +                # Create ggplot2 plot
  geom_line()
my_ggplot                                             # Save ggplot2 plot

 

r graph figure 2 combine base r ggplot2 lattice plots

 

The output of the previous code is shown in Figure 2 – A ggplot2 line graph.

To be able to create a lattice plot, we’ll also have to install and load the lattice package to R:

install.packages("lattice")                           # Install & load lattice
library("lattice")

Next, we can create a lattice line plot using the xyplot function as shown in the following R syntax:

my_lattice <- xyplot(y ~ x, data = data, type = "l")  # Create lattice plot
my_lattice                                            # Save lattice plot

 

r graph figure 3 combine base r ggplot2 lattice plots

 

The lattice plot that was drawn by the previous R code is shown in Figure 3.

In the following examples, I’ll explain how to combine our three graphs in a single grid of plots. Keep on reading!

 

Example 1: Create Grid of Plots Using cowplot Package

In Example 1, I’ll explain how to use the cowplot package to draw a grid of plots containing Base R, ggplot2, and lattice graphics.

If we want to use the functions of the cowplot package, we also have to install and load cowplot:

install.packages("cowplot")                           # Install cowplot package
library("cowplot")                                    # Load cowplot

Finally, we can use the plot_grid function to draw our plots side-by-side. Note that we are using the hjust and labels arguments to add a title to each plot in our grid:

plot_grid(my_base,                                    # Create grid of plots
          my_ggplot, 
          my_lattice,
          ncol = 3,
          hjust = - 1.5,
          labels = c("Base R", "ggplot2", "lattice"))

 

r graph figure 4 combine base r ggplot2 lattice plots

 

Figure 4 shows the output of the previous R code: A grid of Base R, ggplot2, and lattice graphics.

 

Example 2: Create Grid of Plots Using ggplotify & patchwork Packages

In Example 2, I’ll demonstrate how to use the ggplotify and patchwork packages to create a plot composition containing Base R, ggplot2, and lattice plots.

First, we need to install and load the ggplotify package to RStudio:

install.packages("ggplotify")                         # Install ggplotify package
library("ggplotify")                                  # Load ggplotify

We then have to install and load the patchwork add-on package, if we want to use the corresponding functions:

install.packages("patchwork")                         # Install & load patchwork
library("patchwork")

Now, we can use the as.ggplot function of the ggplotify function in combination with the typical patchwork syntax to draw a grid of plots:

as.ggplot(~plot(data$x, data$y, type = "l")) +        # Create grid of plots
  my_ggplot +
  as.ggplot(my_lattice)

 

r graph figure 5 combine base r ggplot2 lattice plots

 

As you can see in Figure 5, the previous R code has created a composition of our three plots.

 

Video, Further Resources & Summary

Have a look at the following video on my YouTube channel. In the video, I’m explaining the content of this tutorial in RStudio:

 

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In addition, you may read some of the related tutorials on my website. I have published numerous articles about related topics such as graphics in R and ggplot2.

 

In this tutorial you have learned how to draw a grid of Base R, ggplot2, and lattice plots in the R programming language. Let me know in the comments below, in case you have further questions.

 

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