Arm Chair Perspective Preferences
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Do generic observers in their free-style viewing of postcard-size pictures have a preference for specific modes of perspective rendering? This most likely depends upon the phrasing of the question. Here we consider the feeling of ‘presence’: does the observer experience a sense of being ‘immersed in the scene’? We had 40 Italian naïve participants and 19 British art students rate three types of rendering of ten ‘typical holiday pictures’. All pictures represented 130° over the width of the picture. They were rendered in linear perspective, Hauck maps, and Postel maps. The results are clearcut. About a quarter of the participants prefer linear perspective, whereas the Hauck map is preferred by more than half of the participants. Naïve observers and art students agree. Architectural scenes are somewhat more likely to be preferred in perspective. Preferences are not randomly distributed, but participants have remarkable idiosyncratic affinities, a small group for perspective projection, a larger group for the Hauck map. Such facts might find application in the viewing of photographs on handheld electronic display devices.