Differing Perceptions

Julie's drawing of me

Julie drew this picture of me. The details betray her perspicacity.

Such as the way my shirt tails dangle insouciantly from the sweater. How the pant bottoms are slightly bunched up. And while I don’t wear a tie that often, the preppy top + skater bottoms style is accurate. Even the length of chain and the shape of my glasses. All the little details I think about when I dress myself. The only thing that isn’t me is the hair, which falls flat in the winter, due to the fact that it’s toque wearing season.

Also, I have no eyes, nose or mouth is this picture. Only my wide-arm glasses, which I’ve said before is a large part of my identity. Obviously, her exclusion of my facial features has put even more emphasis on this.

I wonder: why are my arms drawn behind my back? Posture says a lot about a person. Maybe this was done without any consideration, but maybe there was subconscious intent.

It’s always interesting to find out how other people see you. A self-image is often biased.

So which image is more accurate; yours or theirs?


  1. Interesting portrait.

    I have more scope of context for interpreting myself and I have more time to consider. But others can thin-slice and pick up on aspects that are uncommon that are ubiquitous and unnoticed. There is no holistic accuracy only aspects, people and moments which are more clear-eyed, head rooms cleared of more baggage.

  2. Well, my self-image has been skewed by 20 years of “being inadequate, not up to par, not living up to expectations” getting ingrained into my psyche by parents who thought they were “encouraging” me.

    I’m in therapy now to bash those negative self-perceptions and build a better picture of myself.

    So I’m going to say other people’s perceptions of me are probably much more on key than mine are.

  3. I would say that less forceful and perhaps somewhat shy people often stand this way, but the way she’s drawn it is really more overly cute than that. I think it’s a fondness for your soft nature that gets conveyed here.

    Or, she just may not like drawing hands. They’re a real pain when you’re working small. : )

  4. P.S., what’s a toque?

  5. @Pearl — There is the odd occasion that someone picks up a small detail of me of which even I’m not aware, and, as you put it so well, there is no holistic accuracy.

    @mae — I still occasionally suffer from the same issues of self-deprecation brought on by my parents, so in this regard, I understand exactly how you feel. To get over all the mental abuse is to truly understand oneself.

    @xibee — Less forceful and shy I’d say is pretty accurate. I didn’t even think of that when I saw the picture. How interesting that we add another level of perception to someone else’s perception.

    And a toque is a warm, brimless hat, something that’s almost characteristic of Canadian winters.

  6. Oiye.

    RYC: see my blog response comment to yours.

    Did you ever seek intervention for this self-deprecation? I was medicated for awhile… At moments it gets so bad I sometimes think of leaving my boyfriend before he leaves me, but I’m working through this right now. Power of Positive Attitude.

    PS. I have wide arm glasses, too.
    See here: my flicks, and here.

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