Susy Bello Knoll, ‘Photoshop and The (Virtual) Body of Models’

In this paper, Photoshop is analyzed with a special focus on the bodies of models and a detailed analysis on the legal issues posed by this specific area. For the sake of a thorough development of the topic of this paper, it is necessary to define relevant concepts such as photography and personal image. Regarding the first notion, problems related to intellectual property and, more specifically, copyright are discussed in this paper. Additionally, personal image is one of the most complex and comprehensive areas of law since the protection accorded to it is not equal in different jurisdictions of the world, so its study involves an analysis that goes beyond the scope of this paper. However, various safeguard mechanisms undertaken by some legislations chosen for this purpose will be presented, while also mentioning some specific cases both in the European continental system (Spain and Argentina) and in common law (United States of America and United Kingdom). Finally, the focus is placed on the use of Photoshop for the modification of body shape, particularly that professional models, as these are the ones that work primarily with their image. There will also be a description of some new regulations and mechanisms attempting to restrict image manipulation practices and those that warn the consumers against modified images to eventually conclude on the insufficiency of the same ones and the need for new proposed actions.

Bello Knoll, Susy, Photoshop and The (Virtual) Body of Models, Laws 2020, 9, 3.

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