3. Inserting figures

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Tutorial video

Check out this 3-minute video demonstrating how inserting figures in the template works (no sound).

First of all, save the figure the author has provided in their manuscript by right-clicking them in the Microsoft Word file and saving them (preferrably as a .jpeg file).

  • Check out this page for basic figure preparation, i.e. removing unnecessary white space around graphics and saving the image files in the right dimensions and file formats.

On page 2 of the Scribus template you might have noticed two sample figures in the space outside the page on the right side. One is a sample for a figure spanning one column and the other one is a sample for a figure spanning two columns.

  • It's up to you to decide which figures will go across two columns and which will go across one column.
  • Figures composed of several images or with a high degree of detail usually span two columns (to ensure legibility).
  • Figures depicting a simple diagram, flow chart or photo with a rather low degree of detail usually span one column.

Each of these samples is a combination of an image and a text frame that contains the figure legend.

  • They're grouped, meaning that they will stick together while moving around. Give it a try!
  • The figure can be replaced by right-clicking the group, selecting Ungroup and choosing Get Image.
  • Make sure to right-click the image and choose Embed Image, so the image is saved in the Scribus file itself.
  • Then edit the text frame containing the legend.
  • In order to move the figure and legend around at the same time, you have to select both at the same time (pressing and holding Shift), right-click and Group them.
  • Make sure to activate Use Frame Shape in the Properties window (under Group) to enable the text flow around the group.
  • You can now place the figure/legend combination in the text by dragging it around.
    • Figures spanning two columns and figures placed in the left column should be assigned the X-coordinate 17.000 mm in the Properties window (basepoint on the left edge of the figure). This is to make sure figures a neatly aligned with the text frame.
    • Figures placed in the right colum should be assigned the X-coordinate 111.250 mm (again, basepoint on the left edge of the figure).

As a reference, here's an overview of the coordinates for the two-column FNP template, so you can set coordinates and basepoints any way you prefer:

Moving objects
tip #1

Activate snapping (PageSnap to Items) to achieve a clean positioning when moving figures around.

Moving objects
tip #2

Click and drag around an image, then press and hold CTRL to lock its original X- and Y-coordinates (putting the image "on rails").


  • Figures should be placed near the text where they are first mentioned (preferrably one page before or after its first occurence or on the same page).
  • We treat tables as figures, so whenever you encounter a table in a manuscript just save it as an image, e.g. by making a screenshot, and insert it like any figure.
  • Landscape page orientation: If the paper contains a large figure requiring a landscape orientation...
    • ...use the last preconfigured page in the template and drag-and-drop it to the right spot using the Arrange Pages window (to be found in the Window menu up in the main menu bar), or
    • indicate where a landscape view page should appear and let our technical editors know they should insert such layout when they go over the layout.

Next step

Now let's put final touches on the paper.