The Real Image
Throughout the decades, media has expanded above the horizons. With advanced image editing software, the advertising industry has hit its peak on what each and every company want to portray audience to. Not just a perfect body, face, and complexion, the insecurity, self-esteem issues, and suicide, comes together in a package in which the cost is expensive. In November of 2000, the Campbell Soup Company launched a series of new ads for its television campaign. The ad included little boys and girls. The boys offered soup to the girls, while they declined it stating the reason, for they are watching their weight! That commercial immediately captured attention of many, for the concern of pre-pubescent girls already thinking about managing their weight at such young age(Perfect Illusions, 2000). The previous example is the exact reason, which proves my point on how media influences the society in a bad way. What factors of media contribute to strictly influencing our society? What should be done to ease the process? What kind of harm is the media bringing to the table for young women, teenagers, and adults? To get rid of the tragic messages, we all need to love ourselves more each day, and should not compare our bodies to the models on the TV screen. How is our body image and self-esteem impacted by Photoshop images? Your body image and self-esteem are intimately tied together, especially in women, but increasingly for the male body too. Increasingly more women and men are dieting to improve their self-esteem and it comes about from the media and body image distortions. But what images are we buying into when we start to diet, what are we thinking is relative to body image and self-esteem? And, are they realistic? Those are questions we may not have stopped to ask ourselves. What about all those Photoshop images we see in the magazines, billboards, and on the television plastered everywhere? Somehow we all let them affect our outlook on our bodies in ways we might have never imagined. When it comes to body image and the media, what we see are often photo’s that are edited by the Photoshop software and one thing is for sure, they do simply nothing to help develop positive body image! In fact, if anything, they increase body awareness and lead to body image problems. The American Medical Association has added a recommendation regarding Photoshop (and similar photo-editing software) to its list of new policies. Jezebel, an online magazine, reports that the AMA has made a statement discouraging advertisers from using Photoshop to alter the bodies of models and celebrities in advertising campaigns. Photoshop "flubs" have become all too common, from the Ralph Lauren ad that contained a model whose waist appeared to be smaller than her head, to photos that consistently distort models' limbs and other body parts(Jezebel, 2009). The American Medical Association has come out and condemned these sorts of images as wholly unhealthy for the development of women's self-esteem and self-image. In the AMA's press release, one doctor commented: "In one image, a model's waist was slimmed so severely, her head appeared to be wider than her waist. We must stop exposing impressionable children and teenagers to advertisements portraying models with body types only attainable with the help of photo editing software." Ever since I have moved to United States, I’ve been exposed to retouched photographs, TV shows, and commercials that want us, as a society to believe what we see. From a very young age, I’ve always wanted to be super skinny, perfect skin, teeth, smile, but what I did not understand is that some of those goals I will never achieve. Looking at a photograph that I have in hand, shows the before and after of a model. I look at one side, and her chin is longer, eyebrows lower, teeth not so white. At the next side, I see a woman with perfect hair, blue eyes, straight teeth, and a different hair color. I wonder, do these people...
Cited: 1. Perfect Illusions. PBS. Eating Disorders. http://www.pbs.org/perfectillusions/eatingdisorders/preventing_media.html November 2003.
2. Ralph Lauren’s Ridiculous Photoshop; More Ridiculous Rage. Jezebel Online Magazine. http://jezebel.com/5376418/ralph-laurens-ridiculous-photoshop-more-ridiculous-rage October, 2009.
3. Bump Shack. Andy Roddick Speaks out on doctored image. http://bumpshack.com/2007/05/26/andy-roddick-speaks-out-on-doctored-mag-cover/ May 26, 2007.
4. Submission Stream. Jersey Shore: Taking Over America. http://siteslab.org/pitjournal/node/598 February 3, 2011.
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