Airbrushed Preschool Picture Angers Mom

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by Paco Haus

In The News: Airbrushed Preschool Picture Angers Mom

CameraWould you be upset if a school picture photographer took it upon himself to "improve" your child's appearance by removing a birthmark from her picture? How about furious?

A photographer in the U.K. decided to airbrush one little girl's birthmark, a large port wine stain, before printing and delivering her school picture.

Apparently, when the proof was shown to the little girl, Omnee's mother, Nikki Allan, she was happy with the picture and ordered prints. One can only imagine her surprise when the prints arrived and she found the purple birthmark had been airbrushed away!

Mrs. Allan told the Daily Mall,

"I think it’s absolutely disgusting. Who is this man to decide my daughter isn’t perfect?"

Although the owner of Little Stars Photography, Luke Joyce has apologized and claims the incident was an honest mistake, saying that he believed the photo was of another child, the child's mother remains upset, saying,

"We live in a world which has all manner of pressures to conform and look perfect and for someone to decide that a two-year-old isn’t pretty enough because she has a birthmark on her face is scandalous. Where does it stop? If one of the kids had wonky teeth, would he have altered them to make them 'perfect'? It’s not up to him to play God. There are enough worries about the prejudices she may endure later in life without having to worry about adult male photographers, especially when she’s just two years old."

The photographer, however, insists it was an honest mistake. He says he would never alter a child's picture for cosmetic reasons. He said,

"I was mortified when I realized the mistake...I hold my hands up and admit I made a mistake but that’s what it was, a genuine mistake. I would never alter a photograph in that way. How dare I? Who am I to decide what features should and shouldn’t appear in pictures? We are a small business with limited resources and this was a genuine oversight for which I am eternally apologetic."

How would you feel if this happened to your child? Do you believe this was an honest mistake? Should this mom accept the photographer's apology?

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Annie6543's picture

Submitted by Annie6543 on

I would be upset. And disgusted. Beauty and appearance aren't synonymous. What a child does, their personality make them beautiful, not their appearance.

As you looked back through the photos, how would a kid feel knowing that their "normal" appearance wasn't good enough? I'd rather my preschooler knew that I loved and accepted her just as she is.