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A creative blog by Brian Leighton on The Whole 9

First Impressions

They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression. I was raised by the town beauty, who to this day “pulls herself together a little bit” before heading out. My 5 trips a week to the gym, complemented by wearing only t-shirts and jeans that showcase my hard work, make me a cog in the wheel of vanity. I, too, pull it together before going out the door.

I also pay a lot of attention to what’s inside. A never ending process of being non-judgmental and kind, I live what the town beauty (she still is) taught me by example and get along with most everyone (though a sense of entitlement doesn’t really work for me). I trust that I generally know my “customer” within 5 or 10 seconds of meeting them. It’s visceral and I’ve always trusted my gut, which hasn’t steered me wrong, in seeing people for who they are on the inside. Pretty can turn to ugly in a few seconds, though what’s inside usually is what it is from the get go. This may explain why the friends I have and cherish have been around for a long time.

My shoot this weekend was an incredibly smart woman, creative in her own right, able to play 4 instruments and juggling careers in law and film production. 800 things going on in one mind at one time was my first impression. Something I can definitely relate to, and the catalyst for me falling in like with her immediately. Cut from the same cloth of having the ability to channel all those thoughts, for a moment, to create something beautiful pouring out of our soul; again visceral. She felt it too, trusting me to do my thing from start to finish, creating beauty with her body, her tattoos, and the one or two props she brought along.

She tells me she’s coming back for round two with her instruments in tow.

Do you trust your first impressions?

  1. Lovely as always Brian…and yes, I always trust my first instincts, and find that more often than being disappointed, I’m pleasantly surprised as I get to know people and discover even more to admire. Kind of like my relatedness to you :)

  2. As always beautiful.

  3. Wonderfully said. You have a great way with words.

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