Perception of Faces

Perception of faces - Page 3

Scientists who study face perception currently disagree strongly over whether newborn babies innately know what human faces look like and whether certain brain areas are solely responsible for distinguishing one face from another. This was taken from an article in Science News. What is clear is that we recognise faces from a very early age and this ability stays with us for all of our lives. Who hasn't seen the "man in the moon" or faces in clouds or in the burning embers of a fire?

This page takes a look at some of these images of faces, whether they be in clouds, smoke, fire, pictures of landscapes or whatever. I haven't put them here to prove or disprove the existence of God, the devil, angels, ghosts or anything else, they are here because, like the other subjects on this site, I find them interesting.

Rocks (3)

Cliff face

Cliff face

Rock face

Rock face


JFK? Hawaii

Pointed nose

Pointed nose rock face

High brow

High brow rock face

Sleepy head

Sleepy Head

Henge face

Henge face
Stonehenge, Wiltshire, England, 8th July 2000

Henge creator?

The designer of Stonehenge?
Stonehenge, Wiltshire, England

This photograph was taken by Chris Marshall who very kindly allowed me to use it on these pages.

Chris writes "I took this picture a week or so ago whilst on holiday on Lanzarote in the Canary Islands. This is a natural volcanic vent that has a grill over to provide a free barbecue for the restaurant on the site. It was too hot to look over so I just poked my camera down and took a quick shot. The face was immediately apparent on the camera review screen and after showing it to my friends to confirm I was not deluded I went to the nearby shop to see if I could find a postcard of what I thought would be a well known phenomenon. Not finding any I showed the picture to the assistant and she became quite excited and called over everyone she knew to take a look. Quite a few of the guides had a look too and none of them had seen it before. As this site is the major tourist attraction on the Island I was quite surprised at this - but then perhaps I was the only one daft enough to poke an expensive camera down a hole at that temperature!"

Puppydog Rock
Moreno Valley, California

The above photo was taken by David Sleeter who very kindly sent it to me in August, 2008. David has been working for the last 7 years working as a volunteer building a hiking trail on a 1,000-foot mountain at the edge of our neighborhood at the north end of Kitching Street, Moreno Valley, California - about 70 miles east of Los Angeles. David wrote...

About 3 months ago I stumbled on what I think is one of the most incredible coincidences of nature that I've ever seen. It's a rock formation that looks just like a giant puppy sitting on the side of the hill. It's got all the features of a puppy; the big head with the little body, the long floppy ears, and the sad, droopy eyes. The illusion is so compelling that I made some signs pointing to the best place for viewing. I've named it "Puppydog Rock", and the people who've seen it think it's fantastic.

This rock is maybe 15 or 20 feet tall, and what you see is all natural. The only thing I did with Photoshop is adjust the brightness and contrast. I took this photo in sunlight, but the illusion is even better at twilight or on a cloudy day when there are no shadows.

Personally I think it's one of the most amazing coincidences of nature that I've ever seen. And please note that NOTHING on the rock has been painted. It's ALL natural. The main part of the rock it made of granite, and the puppy's eye and eyebrow are natural inclusions of a darker finer-grained rock rich in the black mineral, pyroxene.

David also gave detailed instructions on how to find this rock...

Go to the city of Moreno Valley, California in the 92557 zip code. It's in Southern California about 70 miles east of Los Angeles. When you've found Kitching Street, drive to the far north end of Kitching Street about a mile north of Highway 60. Park at the end of the pavement, and walk up the dirt road to the base of the mountain maybe 200 yards away. At the base of the mountain you'll see the beginning of a hiking trail.

Follow this trail up to the main ridge. On the way up, as it crosses the front of the mountain, you'll see a steep zig-zag trail that takes off to the left. You can follow this trail up to the ridge, or the main trail that continues across the front of the mountain, then winds up to the ridge. It doesn't matter because each trail will get you there.

When you've reached the main ridge. Follow it straight up toward the top of the mountain, and 100 to 200 yards up you'll find a sign that points to the best place to view "Puppydog Rock".

This page created 29th June 2002, last modified 12th September 20088

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