Prior notes that certain works may contain guidance on how they should be interpreted and understood. Referring to science, he notes that articles, papers, and text books actually construct the image of science (Using Documents in Social Research).
A similar process may have been at work in the theatrum machinarum. Consider Zeising's take on Besson's earlier plates. Zeising distorts the perspective and shifts the focal point of the plates from the machines to the onlookers: gentlemen who have some sort of commercial interest in the operation. While Besson's work is about the machine, Zeising's is about the investor.