Yes itís possible that someone canít visualize. I never realized anyone COULD do that (form a clear mental image) until I was in my late 20′s. Once you realize that pretty much everyone takes for granted something you canít do, you tend to obsess, and I did. As a result of subsequent conversations, Iíve concluded that the total inability is very rare and most people donít believe that anyone canít do this. As a consequence, Iíve never had much success at finding current research into it.
Here are the conclusions Iíve drawn from my subjective, non-scientific inquiries of 100+ people. While anecdotal, itís as much as Iíve discovered.
* < 15% of people can visualize full motion, change colors, substitute objects and rotate individual elements within their mental image.
-For these people, the image appears head's up (hanging in space right in front of them)
* Most people can visualize in color, < 20% are BW only.
* This visualization occurs (relative to a 'point in the center of your brain') in the following locations and typically, the order presented represents the ability to form these images:
- Heads up (in line of vision), eyes open, true vision unobstructed. [Greatest ability]
- High right/left Ė eyes averted, no need to turn head.
- High right/left Ė head 'cocked up' to side, eyes often closed.
- Head down, eyes closed Ė heavy concentration [Least ability]
* Less than 2% Ė total inability.
* A surprising number of artists fall into the lower end of the scale of ability to form mental images.
*Graphic visualization doesn't necessarily correlate with spatial visualization (the ability to know which way a complex object needs to be oriented to fit through an opening, for example)
There you have it. Pretty much non-scientific and unproven (except to my own satisfaction). I'd love to see any real data or information on this. It has a huge effect on how one processes data, remembers things and generally lives day to day life.