The #1 Killer of that Childlike Sense of Wonder: Photoshop

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You know what the #1 killer of that childlike sense of wonder and amazement is?

No, it’s not seeing the zipper in the back of the Easter bunny costume (which is how I first figured out that there was a human inside that big cuddly bunny). And no, it’s not learning elementary science and where things really come from. It’s not even seeing Santa sneaking a nip from his hip flask as he rings the bell on the street corner.


It’s Photoshop.

I’m serious.

I cannot tell you the number of times in the past few months that our child has seen some really cool picture – of something truly amazing – perhaps staged, perhaps not – and rather than being awed at the wonder of it all, he has said “it was probably Photoshopped.”

And you know, I realize that I respond that way to beautiful and amazing pictures now, too.

We saw a series of beautiful pictures hanging in our local REI – the moon over Half Dome, a bear in a stream, a wolf way up close. And you know what my first thought was? Well, my first thought was actually “Wow!”, but that sense of wonder was immediately killed by “Yeah, they were probably Photoshopped.”

Perhaps real Professional Photographers ™ who Want to be Taken Seriously should start providing a disclaimer in their photo information: “actual unretouched photo, not Photoshopped.”

In fact, let’s take that a step further. Maybe photos which have been altered in Photoshop should carry a label disclosing that fact.

Because otherwise, isn’t it really just a lie?

2 thoughts on “The #1 Killer of that Childlike Sense of Wonder: Photoshop

  1. The fashion magazine industry would die instantly if they actually showed the blotchy, (un)naturally proportioned, goose-bumped, slightly asymmetrical human body as it really looks.

  2. Online model/actress portfolio sites, too, would lose their “value” if Photoshopped pix had to be indentified as such. Imagine: this could lead to TV shows, movies, and such being populated by people who don’t look like they’be been airbrushed. Imagine that!

    Fortunately, if such a regulation were to be passed, my photo editing would be safe. I use Corel PhotoPaint! 🙂

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