Imagery is the use of figurative language to represent objects, actions and ideas. If done well, it appeals to our physical senses. Writers use imagery to create visual scenes in our minds. The words paint an image so we, the readers, are able to create a picture. This will enable us to make a connection to the writing. Technically, we, the readers, are asked to create mental pictures as we read the text.
Here are some example :
It was a dark and stormy night ~ We all know what “night” looks like. It is dark. But with the use of “dark and stormy”, we picture night being pitched black and rain falling hard. This appeals to our sense of sight or visual sense.
Mrs. Blackwell screamed and shouted across the hall. She was so loud, lights came on in the apartments across the street. (Taken from a WIP, by Jackie Wellington) “Screamed and shouted” give off the sense of hearing. Therfore, this excerpt is appealing to your sense of hearing or auditory sense.
Mrs. Blackwell kicked off her shoes and sprinted along the beach. The wet sand massaged the bottom of her feet. “I love the feel of the soft sand on my feet.” (Taken from a WIP, by Jackie Wellington) “wet sand, massage, feel, soft,” these are all appealing to the sense of touch.
Mrs. Blackwell sipped. Her lips puckered. Yuck! “This lemonade is tart. Bring me some sugar.” This appeals to our sense of taste. The tartness and lips puckering, let us know that the lemonade was sour. She asked for sugar to sweeten it.
Imagery is a powerful tool for writers to use. It allows the reader to see, smell, taste, touch, and hear what you are trying to convey to the reader. Now, you go and write something. Practice using imagery in your writing. Do your readers a favor; give them something pleasant to read.