Photography changed many things. History could be documented more in depth, objectively, and "in the moment." We have actual, static portraits of the great figures of history to look over; not just paintings or historical tales, both prone to exaggeration or eccentricity of their creators.
No, since the dawn of the photograph we've continually chased the perfect means to capture the human spirit. To bring an impartial observer removed by thousands of miles or hundreds of years back, instantly, to that moment. And what do we tell these people as we take their pictures? What mental image do we conjure so that they may show their happiness, their "joie de vivre," their bare, smiling essence?
We'll let that sink in while you order this 2-Pound Mezzo Secco Dry Monterey Jack Cheese Wedge.