Are illustrations immediately before a new chapter acceptable?

I’m typesetting a book which contains full page illustrations. Sometimes the illustrations fall in between the end of one chapter and the start of another:

Two consecutive 2-page spreads:
 ______  ______
|p.1   ||   p.2|
|      ||      |      Page 1: End of a chapter. Text fills perhaps half of the page.
|      ||      |      Page 2: Full page illustration.
|______||______|      Page 3: Start of a chapter, including chapter heading.
 ______  ______       Page 4: Continued chapter.
|p.3   ||   p.4|
|      ||      |
|      ||      |

This layout seems bring some confusion when the reader reaches the end of page 1 (a half-full page), only to find an illustration on the next page.

Is this acceptable typesetting, if not, what should be changed to rectify the issue?


In my opinion, all chapters should always start on the right side page … all of them.

In your example, Pg3 would be blank, unless there were additional text/images from the previous chapter overflowed to it. Leaving blank left side pages (verso) is fine. However, you should ensure you don’t leave blank right side pages (recto).

This eliminates most confusion between chapters and offers visual separation and intuitive repetitiveness to the overall book.

If the Illustration in your example is followed by a blank pg3 left page, then a chapter title on the following pg4 right page, there’s no question what chapter was associated with the illustration.

Some of this is dependent upon the nature of the material. Using right pages for chapters can be seen as more formal and not always a practice used for more fiction or paperback books.

I’d encourage you to pick up a few books which are they same general genre as your project and note how chapter starts are treated.

(Of possible interest)

Related question: What is the purpose of always locating/starting new chapters on odd pages?

Source : Link , Question Author : Phineas Greene , Answer Author : Scott

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