Faceless

faceless

The 21st century has brought two opposite trends in image culture: a “selfie” and a trend to hide, alter or mask the face. The “selfie” has a reputation of being annoying, vain, and even addictive; the obscured face is either disturbing, or fascinating and entertaining for a viewer. Depends on the circumstances.

Literally faceless creatures (like Slender Man) can be found in Mythology of many nations around the world. A mujina is a creature with no face that can shape-shift into human form. Japanese immigrants brought this folklore to Hawaii. In 1959, a woman was reported to have seen a mujina comb her hair in the women’s restroom at a drive-in theater in Kahala, and when the witness came close enough, the mujina turned, revealing her featureless face.

That must have been scary.

There is also an assortment of the hooded and cloaked beings – Faeries, Grim reapers and others. None of them is after any good.

Whomever we meet we do want to see their face. Not because we have a phobia or something. We simply want to communicate, work, have fun and just be with someone we can relate to. And we all know that faces tell more than words.

What the obscured face means for it’s owner? Erased identity, insecurity, or inviolable privacy? All of above? What if it is not their choice?

faceless

The Doors, “I can’t see your face in my mind”.

Album  Strange Days
1967

 Here is an article about a plane crash survivor, Stephanie Nielson.  Here is her blog. If any of you are going through the hard times, read her story.

Barbra Streisand with Andrea Bocelli “I Still Can See Your Face”

Photography tip of the day: Scan your old photographs to preserve them. Visit the same places and the same people. Reenact your old images.

inesemjphotographyHave a great week!

75 comments

  1. Think the way the world responded to the crisis in West Africa has been a wonderful thing and hope somehow this will carry forward to other parts of the World where there seems pointless conflict.

    You never know what or who comes round a corner, this is the mystery and the wonder of it all.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Fascinating post , photos and videos , thank you Inese …I discovered you from John Flanagans poetry comments and am so grateful for the connection and will certainly follow your beautiful journey …blessings ,xxx meg

    Like

  3. Interesting perspective on something I’ve noticed and been amused by but not thought much about. I started seeing friends using fragments on their faces, and eventually did the same for my gravatar image, all without linking that to the endless in-your-faceness of the selfie. For me, the hidden-face photo isn’t about wanting to hide, it’s just that it made me laugh. I published a novel recently, which meant I had to go through serious photos looking for a serious image of myself to use for publicity–but not too serious (my editor suggested) because the novel’s not entirely serious and, of course, I didn’t like any of the photos except for the ones she’d rule out. After all that kerfuffle, the picture of me with my turtleneck pulled up to my eyes cracked me up. I’ve been using it ever since.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ellen, thank you for commenting! I love your gravatar picture! 🙂
      What made me write this post – first of all it was an assignment I had been doing at that time, and also the blog I mentioned, of a wonderful woman whose face was disfigured in an accident. I am following her blog to get inspired when I think I am getting less than I deserve… Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!!! I was struggling with the account and almost gave up on this blog. Thanks again for thinking of me and supporting. You are the best in everything!

      Like

  4. What a fabulous post! I’m not such a big fan of selfies — except the ones of my animals! 😀 Your “faceless” photos are great! I clicked through your link to Stephanie Nielson. Oh, my, what a tragic yet inspiring story. Love the videos. Streisand and Bocelli have to be two of the all-time greatest singers. Every time I listen to Bocelli, I remember him saying how the doctors tried to convince his mother to abort. Thank God she refused.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Linda, sorry for a late reply! Your comment just showed up today! It is my life now – checking on the next problem with the account…
      I am so glad you like the post. Stephanie Nielson is an exceptional human. I took a selfie once – for charity 🙂 I don’t think it is healthy to take selfies often.
      I too love these singers – thank God some humans are so greatly gifted.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. the scary thing is how easily online we can loose control of our own image – we dont know how, where by who it is used – it can make you want to become faceless – this is why i prefer to take landscape photos or animals as i feel im intruding

    Like

    1. Sorry for the delay. I cannot agree more with what you are saying. You probably noticed that I rarely post any portrait, even though I am taking them on a regular basis. The world is corrupt and being faceless is a safe option

      Like

  6. Hello, long time no read. By the way wordpress has stolen my face, anyways, interesting read. The selfie thing, I just don´t see the fun of it, find it quite stupid to tell you the truth. And you know what was the first selfie….the mirror! How then could great painters make self portraits if it wasn´t because of the revolution of the mirror.

    Like

    1. Hello dear! Sorry I have been missing so long. I think I know where your face went… Same place where all my glitches came from… it started when the new interface was introduced. The new interface hated your personal face for some reason, and took away my blog from me… Hope to post something soon, but still have problems uploading images…
      The crafty old painters used the mirrors all right, and also the systems of the mirrors to reflect the scenes on the paper… and also the pin hole cameras… Who can blame them, competition was always tough 🙂

      Like

      1. Hi,so you to are having problems with loading images then. I can get into the media library and see pictures and upload them there, the problem is that little button that says “add media” when you´re writing a post…well as much as I hit that button nothing happens, the media library doesn´t open from there. I actually have to go to the words, media library and hit there which is pointless if I can´t post them. Plus they have also changed the notifications and statistics. I can´t get to them if I don´t literally type wordpress.com/notifications and then wordpress.com/my-stats. And I was planning to do a little make over of the blog playing around with the widgets and gadgets but after seeing that the basic little things that before they worked and now they don´t at least in my computer, and they have no answer for this. Unless I change computer i guess, so I have decided not to touch anything more or change anything.

        Like

        1. To start off I want to push the button that says “add media” and that actually the media section page will open, which it doesn´t. I can hit that button for the whole day and nothing.
          Plus in the dashboard, just the basic, if I go to dashboard and go from there to statistics it just takes me to a white page, and the little bell up on top right where you receive the notification and before I would hit it and a strip would come down on the right side now it comes down but it is also blank, so i have as i said to type wordpress.com/ notifications. Plus sometimes the little bell will turn orange and I can see I have received a notification and most of the time it doesn´t. So as you can see I take quite a long time t o answer people. So really I just want for the basic things to be as it was before or at least function in another fashion but that I don´t have to type it out on the top bar. About adding…well after all this i´m pretty much scared of adding anything since it seems that when I wanted to add just the basic which was to change the gravatar everything went to hell including the notifications and statistics. So I´m not touching any more things, in any case I would like for those basic things i named to be restored in some other fashion or however these wordpress people have put them.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Try this one. Go to your Dashboard and open a New Post. Start clicking on things, like Help, Screen options – open and close them, keep clicking like that until in the right bottom corner you see a blue window pop up – Can we help you? Click the window and look for a live chat. Tell them your problem. Hope it works for you…

          Liked by 1 person

        3. just checked out my dashboard. i can upload, but have to wait a good few seconds 😦 May be you have to wait too? Are your images resized to 72px? I resize all of mine…

          Like

        4. I can upload the images, what does not function is the button that you have when you´re inside your blog and hit the add new post, there´s one thing there that says “add media” well that button doesn´t work. Quite strange really

          Like

    1. Thank you for asking, and sorry for the delayed reply. I am having problems with the blog, and don’t have any extra time to spend on it… Hope it will recover itself… Today I was able to reply to some bloggers… Uploading images has got another glitch… I am getting there though… Thank you again! I was not able to comment or “like” too… Annoying 😦

      Like

        1. I hope not… I am due to renew the thing in March, so I will try it in the next couple of days. If it works, I stay, if not – I am changing the host and let everybody know. Thank you for your friendship!

          Liked by 1 person

    1. Swetank – sorry for the delay! Even today I cannot answer all the comments, but I can see that the glitch is clearing off. Thank you for the award. I have two awards awaiting, but before I take the awards, I have to post something, right ? 😉 I didn’t write anything a month, but I have been thinking a lot, so I might come up with a post soon, as soon actually as I can upload images…

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I love reenacting family photos. What a fun photo tip/reminder, Inese! Thanks.

    You bring out a fascinating point with selfies and hidden faces. Personally, I enjoy my privacy and don’t need a face to put with a blog or printed article when I read, so I feel no need to broadcast my own image prominently on my site or repeatedly on social media.

    That said, I do appreciate how many want to see who they are reading, so I have a photo of me linked from my home blog page. I think anyone who reads a bit will eventually find it…and maybe that process of reading at my site and discovering my picture parallels the gradual development of depth in any relationship.

    This was such an enjoyable post to think on – as always, I enjoy your thoughts and photography.

    Best,
    eg

    Like

    1. Emily Grace – thank you, and sorry for the delay in response. I was having problems with the page.
      You are so right about the developing relationship… In real life, face is the first thing you know about a person, and it takes some time to know their thoughts. Here we learn about each other thoughts, and then go looking for a picture 🙂
      Inese 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh those selfies! And now everyone wants to take photos of their food too… What’s interesting to me is that while I have never seen the faces in person of many of my online friends, I imagine them often as smiling at me – I hope! 🙂

    Like

  9. Great post Inese, I loved the mythology as well as your thoughts. I watched a TV programme about portraits recently and found it quite amusing that many of the people who’d had their portraits painted took a selfie of themselves with the portrait 🙂

    Like

    1. Andrea, sorry for the delay in reply. I am having problems with the page, still 😦
      The media has tremendous and very scary influence on people’s mind. I have witnessed very sound people become sort of zombies, so that taking selfies with the portrait do look quite cute and amusing 🙂

      Like

  10. Such a wonderful prompt and I love the photographs you have taken dear Inese…. Truly neat ! Congrats!… and last but not least: how I love Barbra Streisand’s voice! ⭐ Thanks for sharing and best wishes to you. Aquileana 😀

    Like

    1. Thank you my friend! I was switched off, wasn’t able to do anything on the page after the new interface was launched… Will have to catch up with a lot of things…

      Like

  11. Inese – A wonderful thought provoking post and oh I love the music you provided with this one. I always love music but this one was a home run. Your subject matter is one I always find fascinating. It seems a bit off the standard when I know of an individual who takes a lot of selfies but will not look you in the eye when they talk with you. In the interrogation room we used to see hair as a defense. If the suspect could get their hair over their eyes they often seemed to believe they were immune when we questioned them.

    Like

    1. Sheri, it is so interesting what you say about the behavior during the interrogations. Amazing human nature! Human face and the meaning of it was always a fascinating subject for me. We have them faces for a good reason 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  12. This is fascinating. I read a book called The Alphabet Versus The Goddess about 10 years ago. Among other compelling theories about male and female power in various cultures, it discussed what veiling the face can do to the perception of personhood.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I have no idea how the selfie started – whoever starts it, it proves that human share similar traits to be narcissistic 🙂 – in fun way 🙂 Faceless creatures may be bit too scary for me so I’d prefer the masked version better 🙂

    BTW, I post a comment on previous post but I think it is gone 😦 I hope my comment does not end up in your spam folder…

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I think that natural desire about to express and read emotions with the face was the origin of the emoticons, in absence of a face a symbol to express what is hard with words 🙂
    Scary mystery the mujina.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. An interesting post. I am guessing,the owner of the faceless does not want to be identified with and wants to great a mystery. The image creates strong want on everyone mind to see the person’s face.

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.