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How photoshop impacts women: The blemish free images of women's beauty we see all around us do impact our sense of our selves.
A tool that shows how much photoshopping has been done on an image? You’d be amazed. Do click the link and check it out.
So you think photo shopping images of women doesn’t concern you and is a frivolous matter? Unfortunately not. The false striving for a perfection that cannot exist in the human form affects us all. You will start to look at your own body critically. Or, if you’ve reached a stage of self confidence where you think, ‘models are models, I’m never going to look like that so it doesn’t matter’ you may look at younger, thinner women and find them lacking.
Have you ever met a celebrity in real life and been disappointed at the difference between what has been portrayed and what is? This difference is PHOTOSHOP.
Debenhams in the UK has decided not to photoshop images of it’s models. This is a huge step forward. They said ‘Millions of pounds a year are spent by organisations retouching perfectly good images,’ says Sharon Webb, Head of Lingerie buying and design for Debenhams.
‘As a rule we only airbrush minor things like pigmentation or stray hair and rely on the natural beauty of models to make our product look great.’
This image shows what the kind of ‘touching up’ that’s routine. (Image courtesy Debenhams)
There are others who are as passionate about the pursuit of real beauty as Debenhams. In March this year Dove created an app that reverts the image to it’s original state.
“The Photoshop action, which is a downloadable file that applies an action with a single click, promised to add a skin glow effect, but actually reverted the image to its original state, is aimed by Dove at art directors whom the brand suspects of creating such ads, Mashable reports.”
Last week I wrote about the phenomenon where thin, perfect bodies are leading to an epidemic of anorexia amongst models. Models aren’t a breed apart – what affects them will affect us too eventually. We’re much more likely to go on unhealthy diets after looking at stick thin people. There’s a reason why people in general are so much thinner now than twenty years ago when a fuller body was the acceptable norm. It’s because the thinness bug is seeping into our collective consciousness.
Being thin is fine. It’s better than being fat. But best of all is to be healthy. And I don’t mean that in the tongue and cheek way that we use it sometimes where we’re actually saying, ‘You’re a fatso’. When I say healthy I refer to your ideal weight. The weight at which you have the most energy to perform your tasks. You can’t be productive if you’re either too thin or too fat.
Whether it’s dieting or looking at photoshopped images or oooing at Kareena Kapoor’s size zero look, we’re all contributing to the unhealthy propagation of stereotypes of women that pressurise young women to conform to the Barbie doll like figures that are unattainable and that forever leave you feeling inadequate.
Yes, we are more than our bodies – but we are definitely impacted by media comments in gossip magazines. I recently read an article where Deepika Padukone was lambasted for ‘spilling out of her dress.’ Can you believe it? Yes, she is an actress, and owes it to her fans to remain presentable, but for how long can she continue to look like a leggy teenager? And why do we want that? A mature women’s body, with natural beauty is just as gorgeous as that of a sylph-like girl.
What do you think? Do you feel strongly about photoshopping and compulsory thinness? Do you feel it should be our right to choose the size that’s best for us?
I’d love to hear from you.
A freelance journalist and teacher, Kalpana is a feminist, an animal rights activist, passionate about the environment and fitness through yoga. She believes in a holistic and sustainable lifestyle and she also happens to be read more...
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When Jaya Bachchan speaks her mind in public she is often accused of being brusque and even abrasive. Can we think of her prodigious talent and all the bitter pills she has had to swallow over the years?
A couple of days ago, a short clip of a 1998 interview of Jaya and Amitabh Bachchan resurfaced on social media. In this episode of the Simi Grewal chat show, at about the 23-minute mark, Jaya lists her husband’s priorities: one, parents, two kids, then wife. Then she corrects herself: his profession – and perhaps someone else – ranks above her as a wife.
Amitabh looks visibly uncomfortable at this unstated but unambiguous reference to his rather well-publicised affair with co-star Rekha back in the day.
Watching the classic film Abhimaan some years ago, one scene really stayed with me. It was something Brajeshwarlal (David’s character) says in troubled tones during the song tere mere milan ki yeh raina. He says something to the effect that Uma (Jaya Bhaduri’s character) is more talented than Subir (Amitabh Bachchan’s character) and that this was a problem since society teaches us that men are superior to women.
As parents, we put a piece of our hearts out into this world and into the custody of the teachers at school and tuition and can only hope and pray that they treat them well.
Trigger Warning: This speaks of physical and emotional violence by teachers, caste based abuse, and contains some graphic details, and may be triggering for survivors.
When I was in Grade 10, I flunked my first preliminary examination in Mathematics. My mother was in a panic. An aunt recommended the Maths classes conducted by the Maths sir she knew personally. It was a much sought-after class, one of those classes that you signed up for when you were in the ninth grade itself back then, all those decades ago. My aunt kindly requested him to take me on in the middle of the term, despite my marks in the subject, and he did so as a favour.
Math had always been a nightmare. In retrospect, I wonder why I was always so terrified of math. I’ve concluded it is because I am a head in the cloud person and the rigor of the step by step process in math made me lose track of what needed to be done before I was halfway through. In today’s world, I would have most probably been diagnosed as attention deficit. Back then we had no such definitions, no such categorisations. Back then we were just bright sparks or dim.
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