07/09/2009

"Why don't we write a little note to Michaelangelo and tell him to put the spots back on"

''Airbrushing of photos should be banned,'' Liberal Democrats say
Ironically 59 year old Twiggy's new Olay campaign has caused this uproar, considering she has recently publicly rejected botox stating that she is "embracing" aging and "I'm grateful for my lines of wisdom."
We talk to fashion photographer John Lindquist about lawmakers threats to ban retouching (or airbrushing as they called it, which was a process made redundant in the 70s) on beauty shoots, and/or to add cigarette packet-esque warning labels where it has been used on campaigns.
So it seems perhaps politicians are a bit bored and have nothing more important to focus on...? Lib Dem MP Jo Swinson says
" Today's unrealistic idea of what is beautiful means that young girls are under more pressure now than they were even five years ago. Airbrushing means that adverts contain completely unattainable perfect images no one can live up to in real life. We need to help protect children from these pressures and we need to start by banning airbrushing in adverts aimed at them,"
 

Does the fashion industry need to accept some responsibility for those with underlying insecurities. Or can we assume girls are intelligent enough to realise these images are there to inspire them.

John Lindquist shoots models everyday and retouch's his pictures where its needed. He tells us;
"There's a place for every image, sometimes we want to look at something we can escape into, that its a fantasy and sometimes we want something more "real"

I often find myself retouching a girl to give her more shape or make her shorter, it's not just to make girls thin and blemish-free. Also some girls ARE just perfect, should we not shoot her because she is an unrealistic beauty for teenage girls to feel pressure from. If we can't retouch models then only the 'perfect' models will get booked, what will happen to the girls that do get blemishes or are older? They will have even more pressure.
Before retouching photographers used lighting and makeup to change body shapes and cover wrinkles/spots, technology has just advanced and yes, some images aren't real but what ever was? Should we send a little note back to all the renaissance artists and tell them to put the spots back on!"

So it seems fair to say that photographers are well and truly against this idea. Are you? Is it possible to even ban this? Retouching it often an answer to budgets saving on lighting etc not just removing wrinkles.. Do we want to see wrinkles/spots/flabby bits on our campaigns? Possibly we have a problem occurring regarding false advertising and if it was not portraying unrealistic results to a product being sold then it would be fine.