International Standards and Conformity Assessment for all electrical, electronic and related technologies
hand typing

Drafting IEC publications



Using text in figures

The ISO/IEC Directives require textual elements to be placed in a key outside the figure. This will avoid many issues during image editing and translation.


If this is impossible or impractical, please ensure that the IEC Figures team can work with the text later on, e.g. by putting text into a separate layer and sending us the original, editable file.


Notes accompanying a figure

If you put an image into a table cell or Word's Drawing canvas, please put any additional notes into a different table cell / outside the Drawing canvas.


Text size

Text in a figure has to be in Arial, size 8pt (9pt and 10pt may be acceptable, depending on the context). Please ensure that this is the size of text in the final image. Resizing an image with integrated text changes the size of the text too, so please do not resize images once text has been applied in the correct size.


Text colour

All text has to be well legible against the background. Text before a white background should normally be in black.


To optimise readability, please follow our recommendations on the use of grey scale and colour.