Pictures of people are remembered, but not scenic photos

A new study found that while photos of landscapes are beautiful, it is the pictures of other Homo sapiens you will remember long after you have put the album back on the shelf.

Researchers from MIT in the U.S. have found that photos that include people are most memorable. Indoor scenes come second. Landscapes are the least likely images to be remembered, no matter how beautiful they may look.

Phillip Isola is an MIT graduate student and one of the principal authors of.

Researchers asked 665 subjects to view a collection of 10,000 images, which included streetscapes and interiors as well as people, nature, and other scenes.

When an image that they’d seen before appeared, they were asked to press the key on their keyboard. Landscapes without people were the most likely images to be forgotten, whereas photos of people were more likely.

Researchers said that the results of their research were used to develop an algorithm that can predict memorability and could be useful for book publishers, photo editors, or developers of smartphone photo apps.

Izabela Plut, a lecturer on photomedia at the School of Media Arts of the College of Fine Arts, said that the discovery may also be useful for businesses who want to use memorable images in marketing.

When we see a person or a human being, we recognize the contact. Eye contact increases the sense of interaction, and so something is etched into your memory.

“I think that color and composition also have something to do. I noticed that many of the memorable images featured the color red. “The study said that images can also be memorable if there is an unexpected element in them, which makes perfect sense,” said she.

Images that are unsettling or change our expectations will be remembered.

The MIT study received funding from the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of the Interior.

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