One of the best parts of having a child at a traditional school is picture day. Sure, the kids hate it because we can be a little extra picky on what they wear and how their hair is styled. But if you’ve seen the photos of a little kindergarten kid or an older child just about to hit the awkward but cute tween age – they are the definition of childhood. These little memento snapshots are what we hold on to when our kids turn teen and don’t want anything to do with us for a few years. Most of the time, these photos are so iconic because they’re awkward. We pull the out when we’re older and laugh at the weird spacing of our too-big-for-our face teeth. Most of the time we love these little perfect imperfections, but now an Arizona photographer is being dragged online for offering photo retouching options with their school photo packages. Here’s the full scoop.
Sam Walker from Phoenix, Arizona, took to Twitter to share her shock after seeing the photo packages available at her kid’s school. She shared, “The girls have their school photo today, and there is the option to AIRBRUSH the picture! There are two levels offered!! What the….?! Have complained! What 8-year-old needs to be paranoid about an ‘uneven skin tone’?”
The girls have their school photo today and there is the option to AIRBRUSH the picture! There are two levels offered!! What the….?! Have complained! What 8 yr old needs to be paranoid about an “uneven skin tone” pic.twitter.com/6BGCx3FRZ9
— Sam Walker (@WalkerSam) October 28, 2019
The upset mom shared a photo of the order form along with her tweet, highlighting the retouching options available. It’s understandable why this has so many parents upset, with the diet culture hitting kids as young as 8-years-old. However, for Walker, this stung her hard as her 8-year-old daughter has a rare autoimmune disorder that makes her teeth turn yellow and causes lesions to develop on her skin.
She told Metro US, “When you have a child who has some issues and so to suggest we can wipe that away you can look like everyone else is incredibly dangerous and very sad.” And she wasn’t alone in being upset about this. Reading through the replies to her tweet, others chimed in with stories and notes of solidarity.
My son has Vitiligo this would be an awesome thing for him!
— Megan Sadler (@MeganaSadler) October 28, 2019
This is appalling. My daughter has 9% full thickness burns and we have never attempted to hide her scars in photos. We just taught her that she is amazing as she is.
— Sian Wood. Grow Your Local Business. (@Attencon) October 28, 2019
Chances are that the photography company means no harm—since photo retouching is an option being offered, it’s likely because someone, at some point, requested photo retouching.
My 4 year olds first ever school photo this month. This is also an option. I was gobsmacked then disgusted. Who photoshops school photos?
Lunch cardigan stain ✔️
Dishevelled hair ✔️
Face graze from fall at lunch time ✔️
That makes it a school photo 👍
— Kate (@ellasservant) October 28, 2019
But, we’re solid believers that these little “imperfections” in school photos are what make them so perfect. This incident does offer all of us an opportunity for us to reinforce with our kids that we should embrace what makes us all uniquely different.