Blog / 2022 / How to Friend People When You’ve Quit Facebook and Instagram

October 4, 2022

It probably shouldn’t be this complicated, but, almost twenty years into the world Facebook built, moving to a new town without a social media account makes it a challenge to get to know people.

So much of our interpersonal vetting happens online these days. Half the time, we don’t even realize all the details we glean about new acquaintances from their socials. Plus there are the community boards and hashtagged threads that live only in the Meta company’s corner of the web, which is often inaccessible to those of us who’ve deleted our Instagram accounts. How’s a person to know what’s going on in her own community if she’s quit the Zuckerverse?

Cutting myself off from all that info has been equal parts liberating and frustrating, but maybe the most astonishing part is what it’s inspired me to do: without Zuckerberg’s Facebook, I decided I needed to paint a personal book of faces.

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Including this portrait of Carolyn, who owns Union Coffee, my favorite coffee shop in the LBV—which is what I like to call LamBertVille.

Carolyn Gadbois, proprietor of Union Coffee acrylic painted portrait, created by Lambertville artist Gwenn Seemel
Gwenn Seemel
acrylic on paper
7 x 5 inches

This new body of work is called Friend Request, and it’s portraits of the people and pets of Lambertville who’ve done the most to make me feel welcome since I moved here seven months ago. The series will include 44 paintings and it will be on display starting later this month in the window of Winifred Weiss’ studio on Church Street.

Winifred’s studio window
17 Church Street
(at the intersection with George)
Lambertville, NJ 08530

Open: October 22nd through November 30th
Hours: whenever (you can look in from the street)
Reception: Saturday November 5th from 1p to 3p

Maybe this post made you think of something you want to share with me? Or perhaps you have a question about my art? I’d love to hear from you!


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