But you made a statement beginning: "If a tree falls in a forest..." and in the context of this thread imaginatively "picturing" such an event does perhaps make photography relevant?
Hypothetically lets say a person goes into the forest with an intention of taking some photographs of a waterfall. Initially on arrival at the site of the waterfall the person, as an observer, sees the pleasing movement of falling water within it's surroundings. Then she or he takes a photograph of the waterfall using a slow shutter speed and the resultant image (the camera's observation) may give an impression of fluidity. Next with a fast shutter speed cascading droplets of water might be captured in the resultant image (a different camera observation) giving an impression of the the drama of the event rather than the event's flowing fluidity.
So concerning your image of "...a tree falls in a forest..." this dynamic event can be appreciated both aesthetically and physically and as an analogy, in the context of this thread, photography is perhaps applicable regarding the observable qualities of moving phenomena.