A facepalm worthy Photoshop job is one thing.
But when a recent Target ad ruffled feathers with a half-assed editing job on model's bikini clad body (no – literally – half of her undercarriage is missing), it was cause for questions, like: “Why’d they cut off her lady parts?” and “Will this mid-kini give me some sweet underarm and hip spikes too? Sold!”
There was a hypothesis that perhaps a Target photo editor (finally fed up with illusory and mass distributed ideas of beauty) sabotaged the snapshot on purpose. I’d like to believe that actually happened, but I can’t confirm.
In the latest, related, debacle with Old Navy, the company was slammed for allegedly "Photoshopping a model" to have a thigh gap too.
I’d call the model “plus size” like everyone else seems to be doing. But, firstly, it's a mannequin. Secondly, the sizing question is: plus what? We can’t say “plus-the-industry-standard", can we? Well, you can if you like. It’s a free country. But if you feel empty enough inside to eschew that freedom in favor of chaining yourself to some Platonic barometer for where your own weight should be, you’re gonna have a bad time. Why? 'cause we can’t even tell what the dictated standard for body types are supposed to be anyway. Even super physically fit chicks get chop 'shopped into some deluded ideal (or an Aquateen Hunger Force alien, if you're Target).
Thus, when an Old Navy mannequin became the object of controversy, it was a bit of a head-scratcher:
Yet another Photoshop fail, Old Navy Photoshopped a thigh gap onto plus-size jeans. pic.twitter.com/7u2jucI4HW
— Nico Bellay (@IAMFASHlON) March 18, 2014
Is Photoshop really the issue here? It's a mannequin. If you’re going to ask about unrealistic body standard-setting, ask why it was constructed with unnatural body proportions. That said, is it possible that "Photoshop accusation" just sounded like a perfect synthesis of pity buzzwords for piggybacking off press of other companies? ("Old Navy's the victim of haters! Put on your protest hats - we're gonna go buy all their mom jeans in a show of solidarity!")
Better yet - can we please assess the false advertising that seems to be tacitly approved by everyone?
The retailer stated, “At Old Navy we strive to show our customers the most accurate representation of how product fits the body."
Okay. That sounds good so far. But wait! There's more:
"This includes pinning garments on body forms to show how they will actually appear," they added, "While we do remove these pins in post-production, we do not use any photo-altering techniques to deliberately distort the actual look or fit of our product."
Wait. What is this non-logic? Since when does “pinning garments” show how they'll actually look on a body? The claim that clipped clothing hopes to show how apparel will appear (assuming they mean "on an actual body") is like saying, “I am beginning the Big Mac, Little Activity diet to get a thigh gap."
Does anyone reading this walk around with clothespin laden garb?
Wait! Is that what was underneath that Target model’s underarm?
Time to spring clean these notional norms from our noggins!
Have a beautiful day and remember - most models don't even look their own ads.
Images via Youtube