(this originally appeared as a reply to a friend’s Facebook Status. He posted a remark commenting on how different he thinks he looks in mirrors and photographs. I got on a bit of a rant and felt I had to share)
Looking in a mirror, it offers only one vantage of your body, which is how ever tall you are and where you are standing in proximity to the mirror. The angle from which is a photograph is taken can vary the image drastically. Think about force perspective. So when you look at a photo, it can be playing any myriad of tricks on your eyes. When you look at a mirror, you only get the one angle to view yourself from really, top down and more or less head on.
But it’s the one you see the most, the one you reinforce your feelings for the most. Every morning, if you don’t get up and decide you like what you see in the mirror, then you set yourself up for failure. You’ll be stuck waiting for that one reflection that portrays you in a way that you deem worth being proud of.
At that point there’s only one conclusion to be reached: Reality is based on unreliable data and that visual perception is a flawed and inconsistent sense which is not useful when judging any sort of worth when it comes to a device of mechanical purpose, like the human body.