Real World Comparisons:
Bird of paradise
Orange tabby cat
Shades of Orange: carrot, coral, peach, salmon, tangerine, ocher, copper
Make every detail count
Colors are powerful descriptors, not fillers. Make sure that if you use a comparison or contrast to highlight a color, you choose the right one. Look at the setting and atmosphere you are working to create, then draw from the viewpoint character or narrator’s history, education and past experiences to find the right fit.
Colors not only paint a picture for readers; when used well, they can also create emotional and symbolic harmonies.
Looking to add vivid imagery to your character’s world? This thesaurus has been expanded and integrated into our online library at One Stop For Writers. There, entries have been enhanced to include symbolism opportunities, a wealth of real-world comparisons that can be woven into your writing, and examples of how to describe colors and patterns in ways that engage the reader’s imagination. This collection is also cross-referenced for easy searchability so you can find exactly what you’re looking for. Interested in seeing a sampling of the updated Color and Pattern Thesaurus and our other collections? Head on over and register for free at One Stop!
Angela is a writing coach, international speaker, and bestselling author who loves to travel, teach, empower writers, and pay-it-forward. She also is a founder of One Stop For Writers, a portal to powerful, innovative tools to help writers elevate their storytelling.
~Aimee States says
OMG I love this blog! Bookmark.
I love your color entries. They smell nice. 😀
Orange you glad you posted this? We are! 🙂
Thanks Mary. I himmed and hawwed over adding those flowers, but I opted not to because nasturtiums also come in reds and yellows (love these–I plant them every year!). Same with marigolds.
I agree, the first example has good characterization to it. I like the snappiness to it, too–better voice. At the end of the day though, those two aren’t quite enough–the passage has to also accomplish the writer’s goals. 🙂
PJ Hoover says
These are so helpful!
Mary Witzl says
Also, nasturtiums and marigolds, please — (I’m sitting in a friend’s garden, looking at a whole bank of them!)
I have to say that the first example you used told me more about the writer than it did about Wendy! I pictured someone more than a little jealous of Wendy’s figure…