Because you can't have depths without surfaces.
Linda Grant, thinking about clothes, books and other matters.

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Pixel by pixel

I have a subscription to Vanity Fair and when it arrived yesterday I was a bit baffled as to why they had printed some ancient photos of Catherine Deneuve and Sharon Stone.

But it turns out to be Kate Winslet. I might as well just buy my own version of photoshop, take some pix of myself with my mobile, send them out to the media and never leave the house. Yes, I actually do look like Bianca Jagger in her 20s, of course I do.

** The shoes in the picture are the ones Avsh Alom Gur gave me for the Booker which I couldn't walk in.


Anastasia said...

This picture is a prime example of the High Art of Photoshop. It's time we acknoledge Photoshop as an art form, I think, working on pictures like this takes a lot more work than simply clicking and saying "look cool, please".
Photoshopping to this extent is serious work.
Of course it has less to do with actually depicting a living woman than an oil painting. But while the woman doesn't really still look like Kate Winslet, it is still a good picture.

Tiah said...

They always seem to do this to her. Wasn't it FHM that cut off half her thigh?

I find it all very sad. Kate Winslet has a beautiful body in her own right. Refreshing to see somebody who is gorgeous AND might actually be in the healthy zone of the BMI index.

Why turn her into somebody she is not?

Duchesse said...

The inference here is that Ms Winslet has been thinned down by Photoshop. Is this true? Note the strategic placement of garments and draping. I've seen her on screen recently and would not describe her as large. Not a skeletal wisp, but not large.

Linda Grant said...

The inference from me is that looks like some other person altogether

StyleSpy said...

It does look like a different person, but I think that's the point of the photos. These pictures aren't about Ms. Winslet, they're about the skills of the photographer and styling team. And skilled they are, you must admit.

So, are the shoes by any chance a size 39 and still lurking unworn in your closet? Because I'm pretty sure I could manage 'em...

Linda Grant said...

They do happen to be size 39, yes.

greying pixie said...

anastasia, it's amazing how often people mistakenly think photography consists of 'simply clicking'. To take such a photo without Photoshop is the art form, as many accomplished photographers will tell you. Using computer technology (or any other technology) for what it was intended, ie. photoshop to enhance and alter images, is not an art form. Surely it is when technology is used in ways for which it was never intended that the outcome arguably can be considered as art.

In the world of digital art, photoshop has been left way behind. There are highly accomplished practising artists now able to write their own programmes. They are producing imagery and animation that explore way beyond the boundaries of photoshop. This is where the art is.

Personally I see this photo as a rather sterile and run of the mill exercise in styling. It reminds me of things David Bailey used to do with Marie Helvin in the mid 70s when it really was ground breaking.

bonnie-ann black said...

aren't these the photos that Winslet *swore* were not photoshopped?

Anastasia said...

Greying pixie: We have a slight misunderstanding here. I meant "simply clicking" as in "simply using your camera and click the trigger".
Of course I agree with you that Photoshop isn't the last word in digital art, I just think it's underappreciated a bit.
I'm not really sure it's possible to take a picture like this without using a computer programme, so much has been altered here - her skin is so polished and glowing, her hairline is different, shading looks very skillfully redone or altered a bit to be more flattering. I think it's a bit more than the right light and the right filter on the right lens.
The thing is, there are not many photographers out there who don't use the computer to work on their pictures.
All pictures in fashion magazines are photoshopped. I'm not saying that this is a good thing, I personally would prefer if they were rather not, because today it often looks like an array of overly perfect stepford wives but not like women who actually breath.
But still I think it's an art, in the same way that advertising was the art of the 80ies, photoshopping might be the art of this decade.

greying pixie said...

Well, in my opinion it is an art in the same way as icing a cake is an art. And I can assure you there are many many photographers who don't go near it, unless it is to lighten or darken shadows, etc.

As an example I refer to the work of the artist/photographer Larry Dunstan who held an exhibition entitled 'Beauty' earlier this year at the London College of Fashion, sponsored by the charity Changing Faces.

Photoshop is a medium just as acrylic paint, oil pastels, photocopiers, etc. Simply because something is created with the help of photoshop does not make it art. I would say that is not a good picture whether photoshop was used or not; it is not original, it is not particularly erotic, it is not shocking, it is not interesting, and it certainly will not be memorable. It doesn't even make me feel discontent at my own body shape!

Anonymous said...

A picture is good if it makes you feel discontent with your body?

Anastasia said...

Art is in the eye of the beholder, isn't it?
On some days, walking past cakes, chocolates and pastry makes me feel bad about my body shape, so I'm right with you that icing might be art, too ;)

StyleSpy said...

::gulp:: Did I mention the shoe orphanage I'm runningout of my ome?

Linda Grant said...

And how exactly are these orphaned shoes treated? Lovingly placed on a shelf and dusted daily, kept locked up in their boxes in the dark or cruelly placed on actual feet and worn?

dana said...

Shoe orphanages are for amputees.

But seriously, I'm waiting with bated breath for the consummation of this shoe relationship!