>> In the March 2008 issue of Vogue, premier retoucher of fashion photographs, Pascal Dangin, tweaked a total of 144 images, from ads to editorial spreads, and in The September Issue, which focuses on the making of Vogue's September 2007 issue, Anna Wintour definitely displays a reliance on retouching, asking Mario Testino to superimpose cover girl Sienna Miller's head from one shot onto her body in another shot, and requesting that a cameraman's gut from an editorial shot be diminished, to Grace Coddington's dismay: "Everybody isn't perfect in this world. It's enough that the models are perfect."
When digital manipulation programs first came into use in the early '90s, reports Eric Wilson for The New York Times, art directors originally used them to create a heightened sense of reality like images achieved through movie special effects — "hyper real" style, as former The Face art director and current Love creative director Lee Swillingham coined it — as a reaction against the images of supermodels that looked too perfect. Editors weren't suggesting the resulting look be attainable, Swillingham explains: “We were trying to create a future fashion. You could do something that looked gritty and real or something that looked like plastic.”