Wednesday, January 9, 2008

self & the gaze

photo by http://janmeissner.net

I have done a lot of self portraits, but am still surprised at my own face. I love to look at others. Often in the subway I imagine painting the people around me, even to the point of considering how to mix certain colors. My brain picks out the highlights and structure, the skin tone and the quality of years. Then there is always the tangent of looking to see what they are reading. New Yorkers are always madly reading, clutching their newspapers, their poetry and their spreadsheets. Sometimes novels are double stacked in their hands.
...but still my own face is a mystery, and when I see it I wonder what she would be reading sitting next to me on the train.

1 comment:

HemlockMan said...

That's really a nice photograph. When I first hit the site and saw it, for a second I thought it was a painted portrait. (Must be the lighting.)

I used to sit and watch people and wonder about them when I was in restaurants or lobbies or waiting rooms. A few years ago, when I was under the influence of The Beats, I carried a notebook with me everywhere I went and I'd write poems, often after looking at certain faces or watching people react to one another.