Some people believe there are 5 main elements of story writing; others think there are 7. The first 5 elements of good story writing are character, the setting, the plot, conflict or antagonists, and resolution. The other 2 elements are theme and symbolism.
Think of your favorite story or book. Who is the main character? Is there more than 1 important character? The main character can be an animal, robot, car, person, or whatever.
In the song Frosty the Snowman, the main character is Frosty the snowman, who came to life when they placed an old silk hat on his head. He is made of snow with a corncob pipe, a button nose, and 2 eyes made out of coal.
Originally, Frosty the Snowman was a song without visuals so the character description is very detailed; later it became a picture book and movie.
In the Harry Potter series of books, Harry is described as wearing glasses and having green eyes in the novel without images. The book cover shows a boy with dark brown hair and glasses. In the movies, Daniel Radcliffe who plays Harry Potter has blue eyes but tries to wear green contacts, but they irritate his eyes. Hermione and Ron are also important characters in the series. Author J.K. Rowling used Dumbledore to explain important information. And of course, Voldemort is the villain, though he is not always seen, his actions provide the main conflict. Snape. Severus Snape is an ongoing antagonist, but also an anti-hero. Snape became one of the most complex and fascinating characters.
In a children’s picture book, the illustrator shows the character with distinctive characteristics like hair color, eye color, glasses, and clothing style, so we don’t have to describe the character with words.
In the book Robin Sees a Monster, the main character is Robin, the mama bird. We don’t really need to describe her since the visuals show her as a typical North American Robin. She’s a mother and she’s a bird. I think readers can already relate to her.
Shirl the Squirrel Rises to New Heights is a children’s picture book with illustrations showing a North American Grey Squirrel with no special markings.