Our Purpose

The purpose of this blog is to educate our viewers about the widespread use of retouching in print publications. Retouching implies making minor changes to photographs. However, modern advances in photo editing software allow photographs of individuals to be transformed into manufactured projections of reality.

Mostly commonly, retouching is used to enhance positive characteristics of an individual, although sometimes negative aspects are emphasized. Unlike a Barbie doll or animated character, these retouched images are portrayed as living, unimagined, portrayals of individuals in society. The truth is that most of the images we see in print publications, as well as online, are just as fake as cartoons. When looking at these blog posts, try to think about the effects these images have on yourself and others, especially younger generations.We are not trying to judge the rightness or wrongness of retouching; rather, we want to increase awareness about the prevalence of retouching so that media consumers are able better construct meanings from the images they encounter.

Five Steps to Media Literacy

1. Describe - Describe media product(s) by indentifying noteworthy elements or characteristics.

2. Analyze - Look for patterns that call for closer attention. Categorize those words!

3. Interpret - Try to determine meanings of patterns. What is the connection between the categories?

4. Evaluate - Make an informed judgment about media product

5. Engage - Take some action!

After viewing our blog, we hope you feel better knowing the world often being sold to us is not as perfect as it seems. We encourage you to post comments. Thank you for visiting!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Not Just Females

Women are not the only ones being retouched in an artificial quest for perfection.  Unsuspecting men are also targeted by hollywood artists for the purpose of a virtually unatainable figure of masculine idealism.  Washboard abs and bulging arms stand for more than the "norm" of male body image.  What does this do for the self-esteem of young men?  How could this effect the perception and expectations of women and their views of a male figure?


  1. Sadly, the effects on males receives very little attention by the media, as well as scholars. Kudos to the authors for the inclusion of this on your blog. With the numbers of males suffering from eating disorders and abuse of "dietary supplements," this issue is very real.

  2. It receives lots of attention by the media. With not only males suffering body image issues and abuse of supplements, this issue also causes them to be violent against others including women who objectify them by looking at hunky males in the media who are digitally enhanced.