I think its best to characterize things through the perspective of the characters. If you meet someone, the things you'd note about them during the first conversation would depend on a lot of variables. Are you attracted to this person? Are you preoccupied? Are you angry when you meet? Are the clothes/hairstyle/etc. familiar to you? It would make sense for a tailor to note the intricacies of clothing, or for an experienced tracker to notice minor details in a forest, or for an artist to be captivated by the way something glimmers in the sunlight. I read somewhere an interview by Abercrombie about The First Law audiobooks. He was basically asked what it was like to revisit these books, as the author, years later during the production of the audiobooks. Would he have changed anything, and were there places he thought he could have done better? He mentioned that he didn't like the way he introduced the Agriont as Jezal ran through it during his fencing training lessons. The character wouldn't have been taking in the sights and thinking about the architecture and history of the Agriont as he ran through.