The debate seems to be that this is giving women in general unrealistic expectations, striving for perfection when that perfection we see on a magazine cover doesn't exist in real life, resulting in low self esteem. I have heard this issue talked about so often on TV and radio that I believe it has been done to death.
|Does Kate's waist look airbrushed?|
Advances in technology have given the average computer owner the ability to subtly transform their holiday snaps or birthday photos before they are uploaded onto Facebook for friends to see. Relatively harmless in itself, but could this trend actually be more damaging to our self-image than the more publicised magazine airbrushing?
To be perfectly honest, I hadn't given the issue much thought until this week. I don't have a Facebook account and apart from photos for the blog, I haven't taken any of me since university. What brought it to my attention was the discovery of Photoshop. I've been struggling away for the past couple of weeks attempting to create a website to sell my handmade cards from and thought Photoshop would aid the process.
I vaguely recall reading some criticism a long time ago about bloggers and YouTube 'gurus' using Photoshop behind the scenes. As I didn't have the software, I didn't really understand what the problem was. However, after just a few hours spent playing around with it, I can now see what people were talking about.
Trying to get to grips with Photoshop, I followed some of the guided tools and one of them was called perfect portrait. With a name like that it was obviously the first thing I tried! Previously, all I have ever done with photos is cropped and rotated. This was something else. I can now blur to get rid of lines and wrinkles, add glow, erase spots and sun damage, whiten teeth, slim my face and body and even darken my eyelashes and eyebrows. What's more, it is so simple to do. I am in awe of this new discovery and have wondered why it had taken me so long to find what others had been talking about for ages.
|One of the pictures I contemplated Photoshopping: Love the photo because I look happy, hate the double chin & shine!|
I don't think that personal photos should be about perfection. They are memories in visual form, a captured moment. My face was shiny because I'd had a wonderful time dancing all night, my face was flushed because I was stood next to a guy I'd had a crush on for months. Why would I want to alter that? I like looking like me, not an airbrushed version, the real me. It is said a picture is worth a thousand words, but is that still true of an airbrushed picture?
|Another picture with Photoshop potential, but it holds happy memories, even if I am shiny, slightly flushed and with devil eyes!|
Could we soon find ourselves in a time where people are almost unrecognisable from their picture?
I for one will be sticking to the line drawing and pop art features on Photoshop, one of the major reasons being that I would hate someone to have seen a touched up photo of me and then be disappointed when they met me in the flesh. I would much rather it be the other way round, even if that did mean there were some less than flattering pictures of me floating around on the internet.
Have you ever airbrushed any of your own photos? Would you if you had the chance? Do you see any problem with it?