The Spectrum

Photoshop Me ... Please

Technology is causing a stir in the battle to determine who will represent Ohio’s 15th District in Congress.  Not tweeting or spamming – but photo-shopping.

I rudely eavesdropped on a conversation Republican Steve Stivers was having with a couple of friends at a bagel shop.  He was telling them that Democratic incumbent Mary Jo Kilroy is making public statements criticizing fliers sent out by the Ohio Republican Party.  The fliers apparently show a picture taken from the statehouse lawn of a large rally by the loosely organized Tea Party – but, the G.O.P. photo-shopped onto the photograph a poster that says “Vote Stivers May 4th.”  Apparently Congresswoman Kilroy is taking Republicans to task for altering reality with a fake poster.

I didn’t want to just rudely eavesdrop (and I realized hovering inches behind the candidate was not a good idea since the people he was talking to could see me) so I rudely injected myself into the conversation.  Stivers tells me his last face-off with Kilroy included a “head off.”  Democrats photo-shopped his head onto the top of a picture of a man wearing a prison uniform, and put a caption with it that implied bankers belonged in jail. 

Photo-shopping is a pretty common campaign tool, and it seems doubtful that voters really believe the outlandish fliers they get in the mail, or even the altered images that flash through television commercials.  But, the National Academy of Sciences believes images can reflect a person’s political views.  Do you remember the magazine cover that caused such a stir because it portrayed a darkened, sinister version of Barack Obama?

The Academy published a study that finds a correlation between a person’s political views and images they selected as “representative of” then candidate Obama.  Participants whose partisanship matched that of the candidate consistently rated lightened photographs as more accurately representative of Obama, whereas participants whose partisanship was opposite consistently selected darkened images as more representative of the candidate.

You can find the study results here:

Wouldn’t it be nice if a little photo-shopping really could alter reality?  I would put my head onto the body of a 25-year-old model.  Then I would put a 35-year-old face onto my head.  Then I would make myself taller so that I would look better leaning over the rail of the yacht that I photo-shopped myself onto. Then I would photo-shop my husband into the picture and ask him to empty the garbage. Hey, you can only alter realty so much…

Posted by  on 04/28 at 11:07 AM



I took a photo that I did some post-production work on—along with a caption—that I think (can’t prove it yet) would sell fairly well as a poster—for example, for students in dormitories, etc? Is there a list of such publishers? On the chance that one was interested, how would a contract be drawn up—I wouldn’t want to sell it for a flat fee, and I wouldn’t consider this a ‘stock’ photo.
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Posted by irvinelmo  on  09/16  at  12:26 AM


What is the best way to hang up a photograph or poster without damaging it? thumb-tack?I also have seen some 3m special tape for photos. not sure though.I just want to affix some special and dear posters and photos to my wall without a frame.
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Posted by irvinelmo  on  09/18  at  01:38 AM


Hey, maybe this is a little bit off topic here, however I had been reading your website and it looks great!. Iā€™m creating a website and attempting to make it interesting, however every single time I touch it I mess something up. Adidas Adizero Adios

Posted by Niccy Hall  on  02/25  at  01:15 PM


Technology is becoming a huge factor in today’s politics!  That and social networking!

Posted by Double Jogging Stroller  on  02/09  at  08:46 PM


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