Day 1837, something to read.

 

“Imagination enters into the taking of the photograph, if only by the choice of a point of view, which then becomes the point of view of those who look at the photograph. But imagination can enter into the photograph more deeply than it can into the map making. It is true that maps of the same area can differ precisely according to the purposes for which they are drawn – land use maps and geological maps for instance -but the business of the map maker is nonetheless to record information in a neutral way. The photographer by contrast can choose a point of view precisely in order to give the landscape a particular focus of interest. Furthermore, the more imaginative a photographer is, the more he or she is likely to select a point of view which, left to our own devices, we would not have chosen. In this way the photographer gets us to see what we would not otherwise have seen. Imagination chooses a point of view and the photograph directs our perception accordingly. It is not fanciful to speak of a photograph’s revealing new, and hitherto unimagined aspects of a landscape. All this of course is to be contrasted with doctoring the photograph. A photograph of a landscape, however imaginative, is to be distinguished from the celebrated ‘photograph’ of fairies at the bottom of the garden. It is at one and the same time a work of imagination and concerned with what is really there.”

From Philosophy of the arts. An introduction to aesthetics by Gordon Graham (ISBN o-415-16687-X ISBN)

Chapter 3, art and understanding Page 51 (E-book 2001)

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