I love Photoshop and all those wonderful programs that allow me to play with my pictures. That said, since I very first discovered how easy it is to manipulate pictures, my distrust of print media has continued to grow.
I've watched as images in the media become more and more unreal, particularly those of women. I'm aware that photos have always been manipulated, but really, things have gotten completely out of hand.
I've watched as women's skin got smoother, their eyelashes longer and thicker, their teeth whiter, their legs longer, their waists tinier, their breasts bigger . . .
It's all unreal, and a part of my brain knows that, but still, it seems to beat into our collective consciousness that this is possible. And it isn't, that's just the truth.
Now, it seems that the Advertising Standards Authority in Great Britain has thrown down the gauntlet against the advertising industry. They've started policing ads, barring those that use "overly perfected and unrealistic images". While I'm not necessarily in favor of government policing the press, I have to say I'm in favor of this.
L'Oreal would like us to believe
that if we use their anti wrinkle cream
(Revitalift Repair 10),
we can all look like this . . .
Here's a quote from the letter that the ASA sent to L'Oreal regarding the ad.
"We told L’Oréal Paris to ensure that they did not use post-production techniques in a way that misrepresented what was achievable using the advertised product. Although we considered that the image in the ad did not misrepresent the luminosity or wrinkling of Rachel Weisz’s face, we considered that the image had been altered in a way that substantially changed her complexion to make it appear smoother and more even. We therefore concluded that the image in the ad … misleadingly exaggerated the performance of the product in relation to the claims ‘SKIN LOOKS SMOOTHER’ and ‘COMPLEXION LOOKS MORE EVEN’.”
And here's the response from L'Oreal
“We do not believe the ad exaggerates the effect that can be achieved using this product.”
See, this is what happens to me when I'm stuck inside, sick. I must have too much time on my hands. I'll get off my soapbox now.