impress as

impress (someone) as (something)

To please and affect someone by exhibiting a particular skill or manner. I think she'll make a great receptionist—she certainly impressed me as a calm person, especially under pressure.
See also: impress
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

impress someone as something

to be memorable to someone as a particular type of person. She didn't impress me as a particularly wise individual. Liz impressed us all as a skilled artisan.
See also: impress
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in classic literature ?
His countenance was therefore fully displayed, and its expression was calculated to impress a degree of awe, if not of fear, upon strangers.
"As a Board, we believe this proposal represents very good value for our shareholders, particularly in light of the significant new Cooper Basin funding requirements that lie ahead for Impress as a standalone company," said Mr Smith.