Absolute (Photoshopping) Power Corrupts Absolutely
I have mixed feelings about what I’m about to say, because it’s hypocritical. I’ve totally Photoshopped pictures of people, and I have totally Photoshopped pictures of myself.
To fix stray hairs or bad lighting is one thing. But when you make people look skinnier than they are, that’s a little messed up. But when you’re a celebrity that people idealize, I think it’s really extra messed up.
I posted last year about Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty and how much I loved how it took a clear-eyed look at how wrong-headed our cultural ideals could be.
Now Dusty just sent me this article on Faith Hill’s retouching for a magazine cover. And I mean, seriously. If Faith Hill needs to be made prettier and skinnier in order to meet our ideals, doesn’t that show how screwed up they are?
Edited to add: Yes, they are two different shots. But if you look the pattern of the dress, you can tell that she barely moved between the two pictures. And you can tell by comparing them that she’s been Photoshopped to death. Her arm is much thinner, her shoulder and back have been taken in, her collarbone is lightened, the bridge of her nose and under her eyes have been fixed up, her hair has been poofed up, her left thigh has been taken in, and so has her waist. It’s not hard. I could Faith Hill your ass so fast your head would spin. (…If that makes sense.)
Edited again to add: Playing with this old photo took me about 15 minutes. Unretouched, I look dubious, tired, and shiny. Retouched, I look like a teenage drag queen in a bad wig. So it’s not exactly an improvement, and I’d never actually want it. But it shows how different you can make somebody look without much effort.
Edited again again to add: I don’t know why but pictures of me here creep me out. So I took them down.