In the majority of the common definitions, seeing is suggested to be the faculty of vision, whereas looking indicates a more superficial action of glancing or gazing. The word ‘see’ is regularly used in photography to intimate a depth of visual engagement that is not present when we simply look.
For centuries, the work of the eye has had a powerful influence across culture and philosophy. Seeing has been used as a powerful, figurative metaphor for how we perceive truth, reality and knowledge. Since at least as far back as the “Allegory of the Cave”, in which Plato emphasizes the differences between belief and reality, much has been written about how seeing informs knowing and epistemological inquiry.