Picture this!

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 16 May, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 16 May, 2012, 12:00am


They say that a picture is worth a thousand words. Picture phrases are fairly useful, too. What do these picture phrases mean?

Picture nouns

What is ...?

1 a picture hook

a. a sheet of glass used to protect a picture

b. a special nail for hanging a picture on a wall

2 a picture frame

a. a wooden or plastic edging that goes around a picture

b. a stand on which you prop a picture for display

3 a picture window

a. a small window in a roof

b. a big window through which there is a beautiful view

4 a mental picture

a. an artistic photo taken by a professional photographer

b. something seen in your mind

5 the big picture

a. a still picture taken from a movie

b. the most important facts about a situation

The right picture

Choose the correct noun to complete these sentences

1 How many picture (hooks / frames) will we need to hang these photos on the wall?

2 The hotel room was great. There was a massive picture (frame / window) and we had a wonderful view of the sea.

3 You don't need to tell me any more details. I've got a good (big picture / mental picture) of what happened.

4 If I give you a few more details, you'll get (the big picture / the picture frame) of the problem we are facing.

Picture verbs

What do these verb phrases mean?

1 to be out of the picture

a. to take a photo with bad lighting

b. to be completely uninvolved

2 to get the picture

a. to fully understand the situation

b. to buy an expensive painting by a famous artist

3 to keep somebody in the picture

a. to keep a person fully informed of a situation

b. to take a group photo

4 to be a picture

a. to stand perfectly still

b. to look beautiful

5 to paint a black picture of somebody

a. to take a black and white photograph

b. to describe somebody as very bad with no good points at all

Finish it off

Complete the following sentences by choosing the correct phrase.

1 She always _________________ of her younger brother, but he's not really that naughty.

a. paints a black picture

b. gets the picture

2 There will be serious consequences if you behave that way again. Do you _________________?

a. paint a black picture

b. get the picture

3 Please _________________ about your job applications.

a. keep me in the picture

b. keep me out of the picture

4 Make sure Mum's kept _________________ - I want this party to be a surprise!

a. a picture

b. out of the picture

Picture phrases

What do these phrases mean?

1 A picture is worth a thousand words.

a. It's better to read about something than look at a picture.

b. A picture of something gives as much information as a large number of words.

2 You look the picture of health.

a. You look very tired and fed up.

b. You look very well.

3 Her face was a picture.

a. She fell asleep.

b. She looked so surprised.

4 Put me in the picture, please.

a. Pass me the camera, please.

b. Give me all the facts, please.

5 Picture this.

a. Listen to what I'm going to say and imagine the situation.

b. Will you please take my photo?

Picture power

Complete these dialogues using phrases from the previous exercise.

1 Okay. You've found lots of clues at the scene of the crime, so tell me everything you've found out. _________________

2 You wouldn't believe the damage the lorry did to my car, so I took a photo. _________________

3 I'm really pleased you've recovered from the flu. _________________

4 Listen to what I am going to tell you. _________________ It was a dark, starry night ...

5 I told her yesterday that I was going to marry her ex-boyfriend. She was shocked - _________________


Picture nouns: 1. b, 2. a, 3. b, 4. b, 5. b

The right picture: 1. hooks, 2. window, 3. mental picture, 4. the big picture

Picture verbs: 1. b, 2. a, 3. a, 4. b, 5. b

Finish it off: 1. a, 2. b, 3. a, 4. b

Picture phrases: 1. b, 2. b, 3. b, 4. b, 5. a

Picture power: 1. Put me in the picture, please, 2. One picture is worth a thousand words, 3. You look the picture of health, 4. Picture this!, 5. Her face was a picture