When you get tired of blue eyes

blue eyeIt can be fun creating characters out of thin air. I can make them tall, short, stocky, muscular, willowy, or plump. I can make them bald or give them wild curls. I can dress them however I like. I can make them brave, silly, smart, sassy, whiny, quiet, aloof, or downright mean. There are SO many possibilities.

Except when it comes to eye and hair color. I realize there are lots of shades, but basically it boils down to some variation of brown, green, blue, and grey eyes (though I have yet to see ACTUAL grey eyes, this seems accepted). And brown, blonde, red, or black hair. Well, and grey or white for characters of a certain age.

You can try to change it up with things like hazel or auburn, but really, it’s not that different. Which drives writers to get creative–or not. Blonde hair becomes golden, wheat-colored, honey, or something like that. Blue eyes are icy or pale or sky blue.

So help me out here. I’m all for using unique descriptors that go beyond hair and eye color (check out Jody Hedlund’s great post on describing appearances), but when I do need to give those basic details, how can I be a little more creative?

Margaret–light brown hair and brown eyes
Henry–dark brown hair and blue eyes

What do you say? Suggestions?

 

4 thoughts on “When you get tired of blue eyes

  1. You can use comparative colors – “Her eyes reflected the springtime hills of County Derry.”

    But, I think, sparingly. Otherwise it might seem an affectation.

    I think more important are the ways in which eyes reflect character…”His smile never reached his eyes”, or “Her gaze glowed with the warmth of a welcoming hearth.”

    An interesting thing about gray eyes – east Asian tradition holds that people with gray eyes have no soul, like the leopard.

  2. I have always loved the fall colors like a harvest. One of those colors I like is a warm Carmel brown with highlights kissed by the sun. I have also heard people talk of eyes blue as the sky or described as blue as the heavens at night with a twinkle like stars. Can’t wait to read the book to find out!!

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