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I was reading an essay by a photographer who shoots 4x5 format for landscapes. Its very entertaining to read about how he focuses on a ground glass screen and then uses a loupe to check focus. But here's a sentence that I found entertaining because its technically wrong, but I think I know what he means:

"Fourth, the inverted image on the ground glass creates a more direct visual impression because the brain does not have to flip the image upside down. This last remark is based on the fact that our eyes act as lenses and thus project an upside-down image of the world to the brain, which then has to flip it right side up. Because the ground glass image is inverted it is projected to the brain right side up thereby nullifying the need for the brain to rectify the image."

Its hard to explain why this is wrong but basically the brain is used to how it gets the images and it is harder for the brain to process an upside down image. Consider the empirical results that we find it harder to recognize upside down faces, and read upside down writing.

But I think what the author (Alain Briot) experiences is his brain reacting to the novelty of the upside down image. Because the image is upside down, and is harder to recognize, his brain starts to analyze the picture as individual components (note his use of the loupe to focus). At this stage of the artistic process he is trying to extract detail from little pieces of the image (hence his need for large format). The upside down image forces him to do this.


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