With Photoshop Without Photoshop

by ani castillo

Some days ago I gave Umi her first Photoshop class.

More than anything I was concerned about the pictures in advertising and magazines showing people with their perfectly airbrushed faces. I wanted to show her how they cannot be real and how one can easily manufacture the Photoshop “look” in pictures of one’s self.

As I was showing her picture after picture so full of lies and deceit I was getting so angry!, I showed her how to airbrush age off, just by erasing wrinkles and dark spots… but the editing people doesn’t even stop there, the jerks!, they go on and erase those little lines besides the nose (that even newborns have!), the veins, the pores, they reduce the size of the nose and make eyes bigger, they make teeth 100% white and all hair that looks too uncomfortably real is pruned to perfection… even diaper ads show not much more than what looks like a plastic blob shaped as a shiny baby.

I feel Photoshop makes us jump. Some guy erases the pores of the nose from an ad picture and they make a couple million girls feel bad because we start thinking that something is wrong with our faces. They make the thighs of a model look impossibly smooth and thin and here we go!, another zillion chicks thinking there must be a way to achieve that.

How could anybody be like a man-made concoction? It’s like if horses were all traumatized because they cannot be like cars. And they have to start support groups online because they can’t take the pressure to be faster and be able to fit 8 passengers on their backs.

I wish I could protect my little girls from all bad things that exist in this big world, but hey!, at least I feel like I gave Umi her first dose of the vaccine against believing the lies that can be said with photoshop!