For most of my adult life I could not draw faces for the life of me. No matter how hard I tried, they would always come out distorted. It took a lot of hard work even when painting icons to keep the faces from looking like the subject was either infinitely sorrowful or pained. For many years Nick and I spent countless conversations discussing this issue and how I needed to get to the root of it. And then one morning about 9 months after Lori left me and shortly after I had begun working on personal development, I woke up with the intense desire to draw a face. I used a photo of the son of a friend, and it came out well. So I did a drawing of Akira’s face from a photo and it came out well. Then I drew my own face from a photo (pictured below this paragraph), and it came out well.

Curious by my new discovery I began drawing at least one face per day, some times more than one. These were not polished portraits that a fine artist would do, but more quick, fun sketches of faces, attempting to be realistic in order to avoid creating a caricature. As Nick and I were discussing this new ability to see and draw faces it became clear to me that I had peeled through a major layer in the onion. The layer had probably formed over the years of hardening my heart toward the world and slowly losing track of the humanity of others due to emotional and psychological pain that I had suffered. It took the tragedy of the end of my last marriage and the resulting events to begin to show me the humanity of others and once I began processing that I was able to begin to see and draw faces.

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