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High contrast pulls the eye, and one rarely wants high contrast close to the edges as it moves the eye out of the frame.
It's a device used in painting, and as an artist you're the master of the world. If one chooses to to de-emphasize something, it in turn emphasizes something else.
I am a Nature photographer first, and certainly no artist. Sometimes I want the image to depict what you really see, and other times what you want to see.
Photography is a distortion of reality, but art is even more of a distortion of reality.