"Magic - noun - def: the practice of illusory tricks to entertain other people"
There’s something about magicians that people don’t like.
The dawning realisation, as a child, that a magic trick is all trick and no magic, stays with us into adulthood. This is probably why no-one watches magic on TV anymore. We’ve all grown up: even the kids.
Maybe, it’s an English thing. Americans, by and large, seem happy to gasp in disbelief when David Blaine pushes a cigarette “through” a coin. Perhaps they’re playing to the cameras for their 15 minutes of fame or maybe they’re just being polite. Try that on a London Street and 9 takes out of 10, someone will walk casually through the back of shot and say in a loud, cockney voice, “There’s an ‘inge on it, luv. Wiv a spring” before they carry on up the frog and toad to their stereotypical Pearly King and Queen convention.
That isn’t to say we don’t believe in magic, anymore. It’s just that we want magic without deceipt.
When Hollywood shows us the CGI miracles of The Dark Knight’s, Gotham City or even the (now 20+ years old), dinosaurs of Jurassic Park, we don’t boo and cry foul, we look on in wonder. We know it’s a lie, that these things don’t really exist; but we know that the movie makers aren’t pretending that they do. They’re entertaining us. It’s OK. It’s more magic, than trick.
…and this is where we come in.
They used to say that the camera never lies. But, this has never been true.
From the earliest moments of photography, photographers have been using filters, lenses and lighting to flatter their subjects and timing, composition and perspective to deceive the viewer’s eye. Photo’s in every age have been “touched-up”, altered, manipulated, call it what you will. All that has changed, is that instead of vaseline, ink and fine hair brushes, now we use computers and software to make these changes.
Does that make us liars, too? Maybe. Just a little bit. But, the lies we tell are the whitest of white lies. We’re not, after all, publishing heavily modified pics of celebrities which present an impossible body image to a generation of tweenies, in order to sell them something. We’re just offering you the opportunity to modify your own photos, if you want to.
All we want to do, is find a way for you get the best out of your photos.
Imagine it’s your Wedding Day. You’re dressed to kill, you’re in great shape and everything is planned with a precision that would make a swiss watchmaker’s, particularly pernickerty, pa proud.
There’s one thing, though. This morning you woke up, walked in the bathroom and, horror of horrors, overnight a spot appeared just over your right eye-brow.
It isn’t massive, but no amount of tears or concealer is going to hide it. It’s just there, all red and unsightly. In five days it’ll be gone, but by then it’ll be too late. The Wedding is today. The photos, your wedding photos, will be today. And, that spot is going to be in all of them. It’s going to be Charles and Camilla all over again. There’s going to be three of you in this marriage. You, your beloved and that damn spot.
Of course, you could ask your friendly, local photo shop to sort it out.
Now that’s, magic.
(Actually, we have a confession to make. We just told you a little, white lie. We made the spot look worse in the “before” than it actually was. Come on, cut us some slack, we’re telling a story here… Would you have realised, if we hadn’t’ve told you? Done well, photo-manipulation is a subtle art.)