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Politician uses Photoshop to create more diverse image

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› Politician uses Photoshop to create more diverse image
  • Published on October 28, 2014

You might think that if an American politician wants a picture with an ethnically diverse group of people, they would be able to find them and take a picture. That's not what Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett's campaign did recently, as they committed a Photoshop failure by adding people into a campaign picture who weren't anywhere near where the photo was being taken.

While many people have become accustomed to images being manipulated with Photoshop, the changes made by Governor Corbett's campaign are significant and obvious to most users. The Governor had his picture taken with a group of individuals who are primarily white. To make the image appear more diverse, a black woman was added to the image using Photoshop. While the group of individuals in the original picture are all looking at the Governor, the lone black person that was added into the image is staring blankly towards the camera. The focus, depth-of-field, and off-center stare are all indicators that the image has been manipulated using Photoshop.

Pennsylvania is a large, ethnically diverse state, effectively eliminating the need to use Photoshop to create an image containing people of different ethnic groups. The campaign admitted to using Photoshop to alter the image, and has since removed it from their website. This mistake from Governor Corbett’s campaign is one of many recent examples of Photoshop being used to add black people into imges in order to make a group appear more diverse, or to change the composition of a group so it may appeal more to an audience in a different culture. A university in Wisconsin even did this in an admissions catalog sevearl years ago, which also did not go unnoticed.

If you are going to be carrying out retouching tasks, Photoshop training classes at American Graphics Institute are a good way for making certain you have the skills needed to produce high quality images. A specialized Photoshop retouching training course is one of the many classes available to improve your skills so that you can avoid making mistakes that detract from your image and your message.

About the author

 is a user experience designer, Photoshop expert, educator and author based in Boston. She is the author of more than 20 books on design tools and processes, including Adobe Creative Cloud for Dummies, Adobe Creative Cloud Digital Classroom, and Photoshop Digital Classroom. She has been awarded a Microsoft MVP three times for her work with user experience design in creating apps for touch, desktop, and mobile devices.

Jennifer delivers UX training and UX consulting for large Fortune 100 companies, small start-ups, and independent software vendors. She has been hired by Adobe and Microsoft to deliver training workshops to their staff, and has traveled to Asia, Europe, India, the Middle East, and across the U.S. to deliver courses and assist on UX design projects. She has extensive knowledge of modern Windows UX Design, having worked closely with the Windows team to create educational material and deliver UX workshops to key partners globally on behalf of Microsoft. Jennifer works with a wide range of prototyping tools including Fireworks, Photoshop, Illustrator, Blend for Visual Studio, and Balsamiq.