I’m not like other girls…

A few nights ago my kids were visiting friends and rather than cook for only two people my husband and I decided to go out for a burger at a local pub. We sat there for awhile, as we usually do when we go out, just happy to have a few minutes of peace and quiet. As usual, it took a few minutes for the conversation to warm up and steer away from the kids and other household nonsense, but it eventually did.

We were sitting there talking about, I don’t know, world peace or something and I realized that I was painting him in my head. Let me explain. I was looking at him while we talked, figuring out how I would be painting him, in this scene, right then.

I do this a lot.

Maybe it’s because I spend so much time painting that my brain has been re-wired. Or maybe I have always done it and never noticed. Anyway, any time I’m looking at a nice human face like this:

But I’m really seeing this.

And this.

And even this.

I break everything down into a series of shapes. Everywhere I look it’s like the world is one big geometry problem; painting faces is just a variation on the same formula. Eyes, nose, mouth, ears, cheeks. Everything is basically in the same place, but infinetely different depending on the person, the expression, the light.

Forgive me for staring. It’s my job.

6 Responses to “I’m not like other girls…”

  1. Jan Wehrlie Says:

    I agree. He DOES have a nice human face!

  2. Ron Says:

    You know, I’ve encountered this too. I started rock climbing in college. To this day, almost 20 years later, I can’t look at a rock face without looking for holds. I didn’t even climb for very long and I wasn’t especially good at it. Likewise, walking down any trail my mind wanders to what the best cycling line would be and how I would approach obstacles.

    Experience informs perception I suppose.

  3. Rachael Says:

    Experience Informs Perception. That would make a good tattoo.

  4. Ron Says:

    Experience Informs Perception™

  5. Rachael Says:


  6. Robbi Cary Says:

    And my mind is always turning and polishing words and phrases and titles – because I’m a writer! God is a wonderfully creative and good God and He endows us with His gifts! How cool is that? Thank goodness He has paved the way for us.

    Your gift of painting is awesome!

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