Publication details [#1632]

Sutherland, Clare, Julian Oldmeadow, Isabel Santos, John Towler and Michael Burt. 2013. Social inferences from faces: Ambient images generate a three-dimensional model. Cognition 127 : 105–118. 14 pp.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
Amsterdam: Elsevier


This paper investigates the way social inferences from faces on the basis of ambient images generate a three-dimensional model. A database of ambient images was used and three experiments were conducted. Particularly, experiment 1 investigated the constituency of facial cues underlying trait inferences. Experiment 2 tested the ratings of 1000 ambient photographs and indicated that youthful attractiveness constitutes a dominant factor. Experiment 3 tested the visualization of face averages on the basis of texture and shape and has shown that there are three dimensions of trait inferences: approachability, dominance and youthful-attractiveness. In general, the results indicated that perceptions in face evaluation are subject to the prominence of the three above-named dimensions. All the above results are interesting for the function of conceptual metonymy