Describing People

Vocabulary:
Describing People

Sample

Describe someone who has had an important influence on your life.

You should say:

  • who this person is and how he/she looks like
  • how long you have known him/her and what relations you have
  • what qualities this person has
  • explain why they have had such an influence on you.
In anybody’s life there is someone very important for us. The person who has deeply influenced my life is my friend and my neighbor.

Her name is Kate. She is 32 years old, we are peers, actually. Kate looks extremely attractive. She is of average height, neither plump nor slim. Her chubby round face is framed by a mass of curly fair hair and her sparkling blue eyes show her humour and friendliness. She prefers wearing stylish, classic clothes. I don’t think I have ever seen her in a creased suit.

It seems we have known each other for ages, though we first met three years ago when Kate knocked on my door and asked for a laptop because she hadn’t yet brought all her things in the new apartment. Since then we have been thick as thieves. I sometimes think we are not just bosom friends but kin sisters. We have a lot in common. We both like classical music and willingly do the voluntary work.

As for my friend’s character, it would take me forever to enumerate all her good qualities. Firstly, she is very studious. She never does anything in a slipshod manner, which is worth emulating. Secondly, she is kind and generous. She always shows a readiness to give and share whatever it is: money or time. It was her, that made me involved in voluntary work. Finally, in addition to being kind-hearted, she is also cooperative and sociable, which attracts a lot of people to her.

There is no doubt her influence on me is strong enough. It was her that taught me to be more open to people and confident. Thanks to my friend Kate I have quit my boring job of an accountant and work now as a manager for our local charity organization.
I believe it is a lifelong friendship.

Ideas for writing

Describe someone who has had an important influence on your life.

You should say:

  • who this person is and how he/she looks like
  • how long you have known him/her and what relations you have
  • what qualities this person has
  • explain why they have had such an influence on you.

Describe someone in your family who you like.

You should say:

  • How this person is related to you
  • What this person looks like
  • What kind of person he/she is
  • and explain why you like this person.

Describe an adventurous person you know.

You should say:

  • who the person is
  • how you know this person
  • what this person does that is adventurous
  • and explain why you think this person likes to take risks.

Describe a teacher you once had who you enjoyed being taught by. 

You should say

  • who this person was
  • when they were your teacher
  • which subject they taught you
  • and describe what it was about their character that you liked.

Describe a person you once met who left the strong impression on you. 

You should say

  • who this person was
  • when and how you met
  • what the person looked like and describe what it was about their character too be impressed
  • why you were under the impression

Describe a person who once did a huge favor for you. 

You should say

  • who this person was
  • what the person looked like
  • what favor they did for
  • why you find the favor an invaluable service

Writing Techniques

Describing peopl

Paragraph 1: Introduction

Name of the person.

Time you first met/saw the person.


Paragraph 2: Main Body

Physical appearance.

General appearance: height, build, age.

Specific details: facial features, hair, clothes.


Paragraph 3: Main Body

Personal positive qualities and behaviour/manners + justifications/examples.

Personal negative qualities and behaviour/manners in mild language + justifications/examples.


Paragraph 4: Main Body

Activities a person partakes in.


Conclusion

Comments and feelings about the person.


Tips

Avoid beginning all sentences in the same way as this will make your writing boring. 

Use a variety of grammar structures, vocabulary and sentence complexity.


Descriptive Vocabulary

Height: 

of average height, of medium height, middle height, middle sizes;

(rather) short, (quite) tall, six feet tall;

just over a meter, short, diminutive.


Build and figure: 

skinny, (quite) thin, slim (about women), slender, lean (mostly about men);

obese, fat, plump, chubby, stout, paunchy, well fed;

underweight, overweight;

medium-build, well-built, heavily built, strong, muscular, athletic; muscular; 

long-legged, round-shouldered; broad-shouldered;

a delicate figure; a delicate constitution;

weak, feeble;

lofty, neat (mostly about women), graceful.


Hands: calloused, hairy, large, small, puffy, soft, small.


Legs: long, short, slender, shapely.


Age:

a newborn,

a child,

a toddler,

a kid,

a little boy, a little girl,

a 5-year-old girl, 

a preteen,

a teenager,

an adult,

an old man, a senior citizen;

young, 

grown-up;

in his mid-forties,

middle-aged,

elderly/old.


Come of age, 

come up to retirement, 

midlife crisis.


He is twenty years old. 

She is in her thirties. 

He is about forty. 

She is eighteen plus. She turned twenty something.


Complexion: wrinkled, tanned, pale, freckled, dark, fair, sallow.


Face: round, oval, long, square, 

gaunt, thin, fleshy;

tanned (sunburned, browned), pale;

wrinkled, freckled, pimpled, flawless;

puffy, pasty, clean-shaven.


Features: chiseled, clean-cut, delicate, forceful, regular/irregular, large (massive), small, stem.


Eyebrows: arched, bushy, pencilled, beetling, shaggy, frowned, raised.


Forehead: broad, doomed, high, tall, large, open, low, narrow, retreating.


Mouth: firm, large/big, small, stern, toothless, strong, vivid.


Cheeks: chubby (plump), hollow (sunken), pale, pink rouged, ruddy, stubby (unshaven), wrinkled/dimples in one's cheeks.


Lips: full, thick, rosy, painted, parched, parted;

to bite one’s lips;

to compress one's lips;

to curl one's lips;

to purse one's lips.


Nose: aquiline, flat, hooked, snub, fleshy, thin, curved, crooked, freckled, straight.


Smile:  charming, engaging, happy, pleasant, pleased sweet, broad, cunning, faint, ironical, sad, strained, wry, enigmatic, winning.


Hair:

black, jet-black, dark, brown, fair, golden, auburn, ginger, red, reddish, grizzling (grizzled), ash-blonde; grey, dyed;

crisp, waved, curled, curly, lank (straight), thick, abundant, scanty (thin), sleek (smooth), silky, luxuriant, rumpled, disheveled, bobbed;

braids (plaits), a lock, a curl, a ringlet, a forelock;

a brunette, a blond(e);

short, long, shoulder-length, bald (bald-headed), balding.


Teeth: close-set, even, uneven large, small (tiny), sparse, a set of teeth.


Jaw: square, strong.


Chin: double, pointed, protruding, round, massive.


Eyes: kind (good), warm, blue, brown dark, grey, hazel, steel-grey, bulging, close-set, deep-set, sunken, blue-eyed, cross-eyed, almond-shaped, slanting.


Eyelashes: curving, straight, thick.


Special features: mole, scar, dimples, beard, moustache.

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