Visual essays are a great way to convey meaning in writing, and they can make your work more interesting and engaging. Visual essays offer writers an opportunity to share their unique perspectives and experiences through the use of images. In this article, we’ll walk through how to write a visual essay by first finding a topic that sparks your interest or tells a compelling story about something you’ve learned about or experienced. From there, we’ll discuss research methods for finding images — including taking photos yourself! Finally, we’ll go over how to arrange all these elements into one cohesive piece using examples from professional writers who have successfully completed their own visual essays.

Finding a topic

Finding a topic that is relevant, interesting, and can be researched is the first step in writing a visual essay.

Doing the necessary research

Writing an outline

Putting it all together

To put it all together, look at the following example:

>You can see that this essay is about the author’s recollection of a time when she was young and her family had a picnic near the beach. The introduction and conclusion are only one paragraph each; they are also short but have greater detail than other parts of the essay to provide context for what’s being said. So what makes these paragraphs different? In addition to offering general information about why writing an essay like this is important before moving on to your own topic (you do this in the introduction), you’ll want to use these sections as an opportunity to engage readers by including some personal anecdotes or other details that relate directly back to your main point by showing how it applies directly either back then or now.

>This last sentence brings us full circle from where we started—it forms our closing paragraph for both sections because its purpose is not merely describing what happened (i

Photographs can be used to replace words or to support them if you’re creating a hybrid visual essay.

Captions are important because your audience should know what they’re looking at.

Captions are important because your audience should know what they’re looking at. They provide context by helping the reader understand what different elements of the image mean. When writing captions, keep the following guidelines in mind:

Be sensitive to how photography is used in different contexts and how your audience might be impacted by the images you choose.

When using photography in your essays, consider how the way you use the images will affect your readers.

Choose photos carefully and with intention.

There are a few things you need to consider when choosing photos for your essay. The first is context because what may seem relevant to you might not be relevant to your audience. For example, if you choose a photo of a child without shoes in the middle of winter and then write about poverty in America, it won’t have much meaning for anyone but those who know about that specific child or situation.

Another thing to look at when choosing photos is relevance: does each photo support your thesis? If so, great! But if not, then reconsider using it. You don’t want any miscommunication with readers because they don’t understand why something was included in your essay.

Don’t worry about taking the perfect picture — just take lots of pictures!

Don’t worry about taking the perfect picture. You can’t. You won’t. You just have to take lots of them!

It’s easy to become paralyzed by your desire to get the perfect shot, and that’s why you should resist it at all costs. Don’t let yourself stop taking photos because one is less than ideal, or because you haven’t taken enough yet and need to wait for inspiration or better lighting or whatever other excuse pops up in your head when you’re trying to do nothing but shoot pictures of this thing right now!

The best way I’ve found for overcoming this block is just not worrying about how many pictures I take and instead focusing on making each one interesting in its own way. If I’m concerned with whether my subjects are looking at me while they pose, then how am I supposed to capture anything other than a stiff portrait? If I’m worried about getting something that “looks good,” then what am I going after: beauty or meaning?

Your personal experience is valuable!

Your personal experience is valuable! You’ve got a story to tell, and the best way to tell it is by using your own life as material. Your essay will be more interesting and relatable if you share what you know, which means sharing your experiences.

You can use your personal experience to add a new layer of meaning to your writing.

Visual essays can add a new layer of meaning to your writing.

Visual essays can add a new layer of meaning to your writing. They can support or replace words, tell stories, make points and show how something works.

You can write a visual essay about anything that you want to share with others. Some examples include:

Make sure you have a good topic and that your image examples are from reliable sources

The first step to writing a visual essay is to choose your topic. It should be something you’re interested in and that you can write about in an interesting way, but it also needs to be relevant to your audience and have some sort of visual element.

Once you’ve chosen the right topic, make sure it has sources available for further research. You want to make sure that what you’re saying is accurate and not biased just because it makes for a good story (or picture).

Revising and editing

Once you have finished your visual essay, it is time to revise and edit your work. There are numerous ways you can revise and edit your work, but the most important thing to remember is that revising and editing go hand-in-hand; once you make one change, be sure to check for other potential changes. Below are some tips for revising and editing:


You can use visual essays in a variety of ways, from making simple presentations to creating entire books. The key is to start with a topic you’re passionate about and then find images that support what you want to say. You’ll also need to think carefully about how your audience will respond to the images in your essay; if they’re going to be upset or offended by what they see, then maybe it’s not worth including them at all.