Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Sex, Lies, and Photoshop

Yesterday I had to email some photos to a printer in New York so that I can get 9"x 12" laser prints for my portfolio. The photos are from a test shoot I did a while ago (I wrote about it here and here), and I never printed them out because 1) I don't like them all that much (I really hate my expression in these!) and 2) I can't afford to spend my money on these things at the moment. But, I have a casting in the city tomorrow (yep, I'm road tripping up from Delaware and will be in the city for less than 24 hours), and my agent specifically asked me to get these pictures printed.

As I was going through the cd of pictures from the shoot, I was struck by how different I look in the originals and the retouched photos. I wish I knew a way to put the retouched photo over the original so that as you moved your mouse over the picture, it would toggle between the two.

As it is, you can see that there are some pretty major differences between the two. I'm obviously paler, with ivory skin, but also you can see that the bags under my eyes are gone, as well as stray hairs, veins, and my infamous (some people like it, others hate it) cleft chin.

The biggest difference in the second set of photos is that I have instantly lost ten pounds (or 4.5 Kilos). My left hip seems slimmer, and the right leg conveniently disappears into nothingness.
Retouch 2

Retouch 1

Of course by now many people in the blogging community know of the snafu that was Complex Magazine posting an unretouched picture of Kim Kardashian on their website. As soon as the gaffe was realized, the magazine pulled the picture and put the retouched one in its place. Judge for yourself how much work was done on her in Photoshop.


I'll leave it for you to decide how you feel about the retouching of celebrities and whether magazines should let readers know what they're doing.

This is a recent video from The New York Times that deals with this exact subject.

Picture 5

And, just for a bit of humor here, be sure to check out Photoshop Disasters, a website that posts pictures of some pretty awful photoshopping.



Anonymous said...

There. I did it! I read one of your blogs, finally. Sorry it took me so long. Your blog makes me want to retouch TedE, cuz it's been since Sunday (perhaps that sounds creepy). Oh, and I see your posting below about the english singer. You ask if you're the only one that's seen it. You're not the only one. I watched it at least five times today. There's some creative editing going on, but it's still touching. -Mark P

Aysha Photography said...

Hi Cole! I am so happy to have found your very exciting blog! :)

The thing with photographers and photoshop, that the fashion industry pushes us to do a whole big deal of retouching! I used to think that the model herself will be offended if they see the before-after pictures that why I always just hand them the after picture lol .. I think you are naturally beautiful no matter what Cole, don't feel bad about it!

sophiassweetspot said...

wow! interesting...i was just watching a clip a second ago where the actress chloe sevigny was saying that she doesn't mind retouching, especially when its retouching of her waist! she is super tiny as it is. great post!