With so much falsehood in fashion advertising, just how much are we affecting the minds of the younger generation? Magazines, billboards and other print media push an unattainable fantasy world upon us. So when laws are being considered to have publications clearly label ‘Photoshopped’ images, personally, I’m all for that.
French public health officials want to combat eating disorders by having magazines say to what extent their photos have been retouched.
“These days, altered images are ubiquitous; the fairytale world threatens to engulf our own. The illusion is more complete, too — with digital technology it’s harder to see the smoothing. Stalin would have drooled at the possibilities.”
— MORE HERE IN DAVID BYRNE’S JOURNAL
I’ve previously mentioned the topic, with the twisted reality of fashion advertising, and it’s one I believe should be given a lot more attention.
Here’s a related video that clearly outlines the ‘Photoshop effect’.
Visit YouTube if you can’t see the embedded video above.
Further discussion on image retouching
- The Photoshop effect
“…whenever one of my videos begins to do well on YouTube, the commentators berate me over my weight.”
- Women who say no to Photoshopping
“Retouching. Photoshopping. It’s everywhere. Want to be considered beautiful? You must have no pores, no wrinkles, no moles, NO PERSONALITY.”
- Has photo retouching gone too far?
“Remember Jessica Rabbit? I wanted her va va voom figure, long red hair and white skin as a girl, but I knew she was a cartoon. There was no illusion of reality. Is what we are seeing in print these days any more real than Jessica Rabbit?”
- Kim Kardashian Photoshop controversy
“So what? I have a little cellulite… just because I am on the cover of a magazine doesn’t mean I’m perfect.”
- Striving for perfection is dangerous
“If we are never exposed to the imperfections of celebrities, how can they possibly serve as healthy, responsible role models?”
Should magazines disclose to what extent their images have been retouched, or should we carry on as we are?
I don’t agree with those who blame the media for every teenage girl with an eating disorder, but there should at least be some accountability for fueling the fire.
Some people want to ban retouching entirely, but any form of media censorship isn’t good in my opinion. I’d like to see a high profile fashion magazine publish an issue without any retouching at all. Now there’s a publicity generator, and it would go some way to dissolving the myth of fairytale beauty.
Update: 17 April 2009
French Elle has published a ‘no makeup’ issue — causing a stir.