Being both a homeschool family and a bunch of creatives, it’s no wonder summer is a busy time for the lot of us when it comes to our personal projects. During the break the kids and I all take advantage of the extra time to pour a few more hours each day into the creative pursuits we work on throughout the year. So it also tends to be a time of skill growth as well.
This is always a good thing, though both girls have found it to also be a tad frustrating. You see, they have a talent for more visual arts than me, and both have been progressing quickly. This is developmentally normal given their ages and the leaps in fine motor control and abilities to understand and think through complex sequences. However, this becomes a bit of a problem when working on large scope projects such as the comic series one is writing and the animation and game design the other is pursuing. By the time they finish a leg of the project, the art they are producing no longer looks like what they did at the beginning.
Imagery is one of the more common and overarching forms of figurative language found in literature. It is utilized in virtually all forms of prose and poetry, and it is at the core of one of the most often given bits of writing advice: show, don’t tell.
What exactly is imagery? You may guess it is language meant to create a picture, and it is. However, it goes beyond that. Imagery is language that evokes the senses in order to better describe a scene or a character’s experience. Most often, this is talking about the “big five” senses: sight, taste, touch, smell, and sound.
Today’s lesson is on another common form of figurative language, the hyperbole, and a literary device that is its polar opposite, understatement. The use of either one can add humor, impact, and variety to a literary work. Authors who master the use of both develop powerful tools to add interest to their work.
We will take a look at personification today as we continue our study of figurative language. What exactly is personification?
Personification is defined as the application of human characteristics upon something nonhuman. This can be showing an inanimate object, concept, event, or animal through the use of human qualities or characteristics.
Because of its prevalence in cartoons, fables, and other children’s media, personification and its subsets are often some of the easiest forms of figurative language for many to understand. After all, how many of us grew up watching Disney films where a clock and a candlestick held conversations and argued with a teapot or the main characters were talking animals?
Two of the most basic forms of figurative language are similes and metaphors. Both are embraced by poets around the globe and throughout time. Many of the examples in today's lesson are pulled from poetry, but you can find similes and metaphors used quite often in prose as well.
I am writing about them together because they are both means of comparing one thing to another in order to better illustrate an idea. However, one major difference sets them apart.
In addition to working as a freelance writer, A. B. England is a novelist, all around geek, avid crafter, and a homeschooling mother of two.
She is an autistic creator with a love of mythology, fantasy, and all flavors of science fiction.
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