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Camera vs Human Vision

Updated: Jan 13, 2021

People get really disappointed when their pictures come out not the way they saw it. Most of the time, they think they need a better camera, where In fact, there are other reasons. What are the five major differences between how we see and how camera does?

1. Camera has a frame, we do not.

When we say this view is beautiful, for example, its because our eyes saw certain elements that was translated, all together, in our mind as beautiful; the purple flowers on our right, the bluish mountains far away, the green trees on our left, etc. The camera records only what comes in the frame, which may not be all the elements that gave us the feeling our mind recorded. Therefore, it is very important to ask ourselves: Why we feel so? What are the elements that gave us such a feeling? To include them inside the camera frame.

2. Camera does not select, we do.

Our brain filters out what the eye records, directing us to see only what we consider most important; the center of interest (COI). Camera doesn’t have a brain, it doesn't select, it doesn’t know what is important for you & what is not. We have to select for it. If not, the photographer will miss distractions around the COI.

3. Camera has 2D vision we have 3D.

There is no real depth in a 2D photo, just an illusion of depth. Perspective is the way real 3D objects are presented in a 2D visual; photo. This Includes their relative positions, their relative sizes and relative spacing between each other. A tower that we see far away, may look like a funny unicorn coming out from someone’s head.

4. Camera can’t cope with light as does the eye.

Tonal dynamic range and white balance are two main issues to discuss here.

5. Camera plays with time, we can not.

Camera can freeze very fast objects that we can’t easily catch. It also can blur motion in away looks dreamy, while we can’t. Low speed & high speed photography are the subjects to discuss here.

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