Practica – Too many passport photos?


You only need two or three, but the photographer or the vending machine insists on giving you a whole page of them. And, the bureaucracy only wants recent ones...they probably didn't know that you had two identities! And maybe you didn't either. 

Yes, you are two-faced, and if you don't believe me, here's how you can find out for yourself.

  1. Very carefully slice one of the photos exactly down the middle of your face. (If you mess up the cut on the first one, you probably have several more.)
  2. Copy the halves as separate images on your computer. Then flip one half of each horizontally.
  3. Put the two right images together and put the two left images together to create two different portraits, the right you and the left you.

Shocking? Surprising? More comfortable with one than the other? What are your spontaneous reactions to each of these yous? What would you say to each of them? Jot it down or share it with someone you are comfortable with. Then, imagine that you are one of these...what does your right you you have to say to you? Dialog with this other you. Tell your feelings, ask questions of each other. Note what you learn. Do the same with the left you. Then imagine that the two imaged yous are talking with each other. What do they have to say? To each other? To you?

Do these characters relate to your ideas of your identities in some way? When I first did this I discovered a somewhat long suffering and pacjent Pole on one side, and a schlitzohrige Austrian on the other. Stereotypes, perhaps, but also pieces of the real me! 

A great self discovery exercise, in the privacy of your own mind and in your journal, or shared with a group you are building trust and exploring differences with.

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