In the Golden Era of Hollywood, re-touching photographic stills of movie stars was the standard. The layers of illusion that the studio machine wrapped around the already striking actors was impressive; makeup, ingenious lighting, and delicate, highly sophisticated airbrushing were applied by teams of trained experts. The image you saw of Joan Crawford was unquestionably removed from what the woman would look like without makeup or manipulation. But the limits of the technology — and the skill and intelligence of the artisans who produced the final images — kept the bounds of physical reality within check; the stars, while greatly idealized, still looked like themselves.
In the digital age, all that has changed. The explosion of outlets for celebrity imagery (ads, music videos, television commercials and magazine covers) have created a much larger market for retouching, and the digital retouching program Photoshop has met this need (albeit with frequently calamitous results). The ever-increasing celebrity frenzy and fixation on looks READ MORE
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