July 31, 2009 — -- She's showing in real life, but in her ad campaigns Gisele Bündchen's baby bump is nowhere to be found.
The supermodel and wife of football star Tom Brady bares her belly and just about everything else in a new set of ads for trench-coat company London Fog. Considering she's carrying a child, she looks suspiciously slim.
A London Fog spokeswoman told Women's Wear Daily that the company airbrushed Bündchen's baby bump out of the ads to "respect her privacy." Behind-the-scenes video of the photo shoot reveals Bündchen wore underwear that was also digitally removed from the campaign.
It's just the latest instance of over-the-top airbrushing. Photographers, magazines, models and even celebrities have relied on digital trickery for years, but lately, it seems the retoucher's Photoshop tool is being wielded less like a brush and more like a knife, slimming and sculpting stars into shapes that bear fleeting resemblance to their actual bodies.
"The more and more we use this editing, the higher and higher the bar goes. They're creating things that are physically impossible," said Hany Farid, a Dartmouth College professor of computer science who specializes in digital forensics and photo manipulation. "We're seeing really radical digital plastic surgery. It's moving towards the Barbie doll model of what a woman should look like -- big breasts, tiny waist, ridiculously long legs, elongated neck."
Below, Farid dissects some of the latest acts of what he sees as out-of-control airbrushing.
Given that, it's surprising another magazine would apparently commit a similar sin. But Winslet graced the December cover of Vanity Fair looking svelte beyond belief. A photo spread inside the issue features Winslet sprawled atop a fur throw, the small of her back carved out as if it was made of clay.
Winslet opened up about this cover too, but this time it was to deny her image had been manipulated.
"Kate is furious at suggestions that her body has been airbrushed," her publicist told People magazine in November."She is in terrific shape and what you see is how she looks or she would never have agreed to pose for those shots."
Farid isn't buying it.
"All the body fat is removed, all the wrinkles are removed, the skin is smoothed out," he said. "Some of that is makeup and lighting -- professional stylists can do wonders -- but almost certainly what's been done is all of her blemishes and wrinkles have been digitally altered. There's a Photoshop tool that creates a very smooth effect. Effectively what you do is paint over the whole body."