For me, art is a way of connecting with people. I feel so much more comfortable drawing and interacting with someone in front of me than hiding behind a lens and pushing a button.
I conceive of art from a perceptual standpoint. For example, we don't have dark lines around us, but artists draw dark lines around figures because our visual apparatus is set to recognize edges of objects.
Perceptually, a large portion of the visual brain is devoted to facial recognition, both in two and three dimensions. However, for some reason, we have difficulty recognizing faces when photos are turned upside down. Apple's latest iPhone has surpassed photo recognition by employing mapping sensors which measure facial relief structure at key points.
We also respond to very subtle facial cues in understanding each other. My childhood nearsightedness was not corrected until I was about 8, so I missed out on many of these cues and am still coping with this facial language today. Perhaps also a degree of autism was involved.
My relief faces, being negative (hollow) turn in opposition to our movement around them. This screws up our subconscious reflexes. For example, our emotional response to seeing a face varies depending on the angle of view. When we view a face from above, our response is warm and positive. When viewed from below, less so. Like birds, we instinctively feel more comfortable being above those around us. This may go back to childhood, when as children we look up to parents who. have control over us, while as parents, we look down kindly on our children. My facial reliefs tend to do the opposite.
Here are photos of some relief faces.
I have noticed that some artists, Modigliani, El Greco, Arp and others tend toward elongated faces. I noticed this narrowing in the process of doing my facial reliefs. As I went from the incised drawing on the clay tablet to a greater relief, the face tended to narrow, possibly because I subconsciously was merging together the left and right stereoscopic views produced by my two eyes. So I started a face by combing a left profile with a right full face and then, over 4 more iterations, ended up with one face that did not seem narrowed. Here they are: