For submitting papers to Elsevier journals, they instruct you to prepare Latex files using the Elsarticle class. This class has huge margins (as other questions have also touched upon), to give space for reviewer comments, etc.

I have large, landscape figures which fill whole pages. Do I need to reduce the size of these figures, so that they fit within the margins, or am I ok to keep them a sensible size and assume that this will be sorted by the publisher if it is accepted at a later date?

  • 2
    When in doubt, ask the editor. That being said, based on the posts I've seen on Academia S.E. with respect to Elsevier, you should expect that they'll mess something up if you don't exactly specify it. So I'd be wary of "assuming that this will be sorted by the publisher".
    – tonysdg
    Dec 19, 2016 at 18:39

2 Answers 2


I strongly advise complying with the formatting guidelines that you are provided.

Organizations like Elsevier give you a template an submission instructions for a reason, and in many cases the final formatted version will look nearly identical to a submission that follows their template. You can push your luck by violating the formatting guidelines, but this will make you look unprofessional and may annoy the editor and reviewers. Do you really want to take that risk?

More to the point: most visual material can be readily organized into a number of formats. Are you certain that you must have massive landscape images?

  • Remark: Note that there are different opinions on following the journal guidelines. The (presently) most upvoted answer to this question actually suggests not doing it. From the comments, it seems that there is a difference among fields: CS->follow guidelines; Math->ignore guidelines. Dec 25, 2016 at 10:35
  • @FedericoPoloni The difference exposed in that question was strongly linked to whether a journal had submission formatting requirements, where it appeared that many math journals do not. The OP in this case does speak of submission requirements.
    – jakebeal
    Dec 25, 2016 at 11:02
  • I don't think that Anonymous' answer depends at all on that distinction. Only your comment introduces it. Dec 25, 2016 at 16:30

The elsarticle class actually has options that let you lay it out as things might look on a journal page. You shouldn't submit it this way, but it allows to you check that things fit (especially equations).

So make sure that the size looks sensible in this view, but also accept that it will probably be resized during typesetting, and make sure that raster images have enough resolution to cope with this.

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