A Descriptive essay is an essay that describes some object, topic, phenomenon or event. Descriptive essays represent the description process put in succinct writing and comprise the introduction, the body and the conclusion.
A descriptive process involves the selection of an object of description, its objective assessment and further presentation in writing. To better describe an object or a topic, the writer might need to compare the described object to other objects that the reader might know. The writer should use expressive language, comparisons and contrasts, description of personal perceptions of the object based on (visual, auditory, kinesthetic, olfactory, and gustatory senses) human senses. The primary aim of a descriptive essay is to find and discuss the unique qualities of the object under assessment. These qualities, then need to be presented in a comprehensive and vivid manner to the reader without perverting the orginal meaning that the writer possesses.
The writer should always remember that regardless of the topic, object or phenomenon the writer chooses as a topic for a descriptive essay, the human subjectivity factor will constantly interfere with an objective description. Because humans are not perfect, each writer will observe the same topic, phenomenon or object differently. Each writer will place different degree of importance on different qualities and thus will present only his or her descriptive point of view. To reduce the influence of subjectivity, the writer should always start with describing objective factors like color, size, weight, and shape. Only after the writer runs out of subjective factors, she/he should use personal opinion as to smell, semi-hues, prettiness or ugliness.
A Descriptive Essay should always be interesting to read, so the writer should take into account the audience preferences. For instance, when describing a car to the technical crew, the writer should concentrate on the technical qualities of a car. When describing the same car to the designers, the writer might want to concentrate more on the car shape, the colors, elegance and ergonomics. When describing the same car to the customers, one would probably want to speak briefly about the technical and design characteristics, and concentrate more on the durability, gas consumption, price and extra features like hi-fi stereo, airbags or cup-holders. Technically, there are limitless ways to describe a single topic, object or phenomenon, yet due to a word limit that descriptive essays possess, the writer has to ration words and use descriptions that would be viewed as useful and interesting by the audience / readers.
The introductory paragraph of a descriptive essay includes a brief description of an object or phenomemon and presents some general features and the thesis statement. The body paragraph of a descriptive essay includes a detailed description of the features briefly mentioned in the introduction and capitalize on those that will keep the reader’s attention to the maximum. The conclusion of a descriptive essay will summarize the stated information and restate the thesis statement presented in the introduction section.
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