Fairly recently the world had the privilege of seeing Kim Kardashian’s naked behind, and front side in the publication Paper. It was supposed to break the internet. I am not sure if it did, or not, that isn’t what interests me.
What does interest me is the lunchroom conversation that erupted about her rear. What part of it was real or photoshopped? All of the women instinctively knew that it wasn’t her real butt, the men didn’t care because it produced the desired effect, arousal.
I, being the mother of two, had to find some evidence. No matter how many hours spent with a personal trainer could not, in anyway, produce the results that were shown in the picture.
I found an article on the internet that discussed the picture and the pressure to photoshop less than perfect pictures for consumers. It included the photoshopped Kim butt and then the non photoshopped butt. THAT was the butt I was waiting to see, the unphotoshopped derriere that was discolored and looked real, not cartoonish. There is no evidence to support the real butt is anymore ‘real’ than the photo of the #BreatktheInternet butt. We may never know which butt is the real butt (I can’t believe I just typed that sentence).
All this got me thinking about this photoshop phenomenon and the pressure put on artists, models, photographers, and humans in general. I am not going to say that photoshopping must stop. It won’t. IT WON’T. Because we do like to see idealized forms of the human body. That truth has existed since humans have put the human form in any medium. I mean, nobody looks like the sculpture of David. I take that back, very few people look like the sculpture of David.
So, what’s the solution? I have one. I think it actually could work. I say we create a rating system that appears on pictures. In today’s age it would be simple enough to include a simple, yet elegant, rating system that could be put on the corner of a page. That would be on the internet or in print. That way consumers could have a general idea of how ‘real’ the picture actually portrays its subject. Young women could have a more informed portrayal of those super thin, seemingly perfect, models.
Here is my suggestion. A rating scale based from 1-4. Or A-D, whichever appeals most to the public. I would have to contact an advertising exec to get the research.
A: only coloring has been modified in the subject’s skin.
B: at least one major body part has been modified, such as arms or legs. Can also include skin coloring.
C: upper or lower body has been modified, including (but not necessarily) limbs, and skin color.
D: complete body has been done over to give a more artistic interpretation of the human body.
P: the picture is pure and untouched in anyway.
The scale is a work in progress, but since photoshopping will never be banished, now that it is common practice, maybe we can label the truth. What do you think? Label photos for photoshopping or let the world continue to believe that all photos are the real deal of the subject?