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  • Writer's pictureShelly Powell


Photo featured in All the Places There are Faces by Shelly Powell

What is it? Sounds like a weird health condition or maybe a rare flower. Or maybe it's when you are paranoid about magnolia's?


It's a very fun (and hard to remember) word that describes the phenomenon many of us experience when we (according to wikipedia), "interpret a vague stimulus as something known to the observer," like seeing faces in rocks.

Photo featured in All the Places There are Faces by Shelly Powell

You've probably guessed by now that my book celebrates pareidoilia, through fun photos (but did you know about the fun rhymes?). Here is one of my favorite pics from my book:

Excerpt from All the Places There are Faces: I stepped out for a walk And was frightened by this tree. Or maybe I had startled him, And he was scared of me!

Seeing this kind of stuff is something I've done ever since I was a kid. It's one of the ways I kept myself entertained on long drives, but I'd also like to think there are some advantages to being able to see the world in unique ways. Here is what my friend Nevin Alderman, LCMHC, said about All the Places There are Faces:

If you have young children or work with them, you should check it out! Great for application in play therapy, in an educational setting or at home! It promotes imagination and encourages curiosity in a child's surroundings, and sets the stage for a tremendous exploratory activity with the child following the reading of the book! Books like these are wonderful in stimulating a child's mind and supporting cognitive development. They are also great at supporting early thought flexibility in children who might tend to be rigid or literal in their approach to the world around them.

All the Places There are Faces started out as a fun project for me and my son. He saw faces in things too. So we thought, "Why not make our own book?" and started taking pictures of what we saw. Eventually, I had other kids and my collection of pictures grew until finally, I sat down, created some rhymes and this book was born!

If you check it out, you might even be lucky enough to catch it on one of the days I offer it for free, like tomorrow (hint, hint).

For your enjoyment, below are some other pictures of faces I have taken recently. Every now and then, I think about making a second faces book. Maybe you'll see these again someday. You can also check out my pinterest board to see other fun pictures from around the web.

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