Notating has a vast and multifaceted history that contrasts strongly with a most limiting theory of notation. In this essay, I trace the epistemic productivity of notational acts, particularly those aspects that cannot be grasped within an analytical scope derived from investigating notational systems. For this purpose I consider both historical and present day notational materials. Beyond exploring the interplay of encoding and capturing notated information, I discuss how notational practices determine our patterns of perception, how they affect the social construction of knowledge, and how they shape our understanding of art.