Yeah, I said mind games because it's fun to think about it. Some of it is pretty proven theory on a theoretical level.
As for our sense or testability of time, we are of course dealing with our ability to reason and test these things and that in itself may be suspect.
A couple of things:
Our reality may that our universe is merely the dirt under the fingernails of a large being. I'm sure a flea or a microscopic being thinks that their reality is pretty important too.
The thing you mentioned about photography is what probably drew me to it. The ability to stop time. To freeze it and display it for others to see as well. That's a pretty amazing thing, all things considered.
As for time lapse, it's a mind fuck to take a time lapse shot of a scene and have someone walk through it and when you develop it, the person is not there.
So the analogy is we live about 80 years. In two hundred years, were we ever really here.
So the question is are we real? Are we really here? And where is here?