Photo retouching has received lots of criticism. They argue that manipulating images is wrong. Nothing can be called perfect in this world.
The Photo retouching services industry has consistently been blamed for encouraging unrealistic and distorted self-images, especially in younger people. One identifiable industry that has been predominantly associated with the use of photo retouching services is the fashion photography. Obviously, this is a concern as a lot of people look up to celebrities seeking to embody their ‘ideal figure’.
Whether this technique is commendable or condemnable, one thing is certain: it is rising in popularity on a daily basis. Maybe we believe that it is possible to make things look perfect, so to speak.
Deep inside we know that the manipulated images are not real anymore, but we still get them edited. This is especially more true about the showbiz industry. In the same way, marketers get the product images edited to make them look more appealing.
Advertisers, especially online advertisers, have a history of objectionable behavior. We are exposed to advertising on a daily basis whether we are at home watching TV or in the market shopping for our favorite stuff. Everybody knows that the pictures of celebrities that can be seen on the Internet are not as real as they look. Each image is edited and retouched before it goes on a website or blog. Similarly, every product photo goes through the same procedure.
The reality is that, while we may know deep inside that these images are fakes, we appreciate their artfulness and they have become part of a visual language that we understand. While we may wish for more honesty, particularly from advertisers, when it comes to the marketing of their products (and I think we can all agree that retouched photographs are one of the minor issues here – pseudo-scientific diagram of a skin wrinkle, anyone?) we have become so used to this visual language that is has become its own entity. It exists outside the realm of reality and as long as we realize this and do not take it too seriously… is there really any harm?
However, advertisers have a long reputation of irresponsible behavior and the most important thing to remember is that they do not care about anyone except themselves and their clients. In this age of Internet and television and 24-hour “news” broadcasting, we cannot escape the net of advertising and all the evil that goes along with it. Advertising manages to creep into almost every facet of our daily lives… and there is only one way to deal with it. Ignore it. While previous generations may have been overcome by new harsher methods and by a greater quantity of advertising, the X/Y generations are increasingly numb to the advertising that exists all around them. They have to be.
So what are the benefits of the beauty retouching services that exist now?
Just like the use of make-up very common nowadays, working on images or photos on a computer is also all the rage. The purpose is to make photographs look better but not to deceive anyone.
So, there is no harm in getting pictures retouched a little bit just to make them more beautiful. The next time you take some photos of you, make sure you go over them to find out ways to make them better. At times, you will find that you just need to increase the sharpness, brightness or contrast of the pictures. With the art of Digital photo retouching, you can do a lot of things. For instance, you can remove the shadow from your face in a photo. Sometimes, just cropping a photo a bit can change it considerably.
Using professional photo retouching services for creative purposes is the future, rather than for commercial intentions. What matters a lot is how soon we embrace it because it will absolutely determine how soon we rescue the adorable art from the evil corporations and hand it to the well-intended creative minds.
In a nutshell, though there are clearly no reigns to the scope of photo retouching services, it is paramount to note the difference between the ethical and unethical use of the same. It is prudent to prevent photo retouching of images used for the journalistic or documentary purpose. Though the technology has proved immensely useful in varied fields, one cannot deny that it demands strong actions against the unscrupulous use of the same.
In the future, hopefully, the technology won’t be misused and will be used for creative purposes only. This art is not bad itself. What is required is to use it for good purposes only.