It is easy to imagine a culture much like our own except where altering or “photoshopping” images had become a celebrated and expected ideal, for the purpose of portraying more of what it felt like to truly be there.

Cameras do not capture well the feel of a place or an event. It’s the rare photo that does this, and even then it’s usually incompletely so.

In a different world, photographers would be more like painters where the images are expected or demanded by the public to be altered to better tell the truth of an event.

We’re accustomed to the way it is now, so to some the thought will seem monstrous; but the other culture is just as plausible, and they’d be just as appalled at our claim that an unaltered photo represents any truth of the world.