According to several patrons of Margie Hansborough’s recent social gathering, the question posed by a Cenegenics television advertisement – “How does this 70-year-old have the body of a 30-year-old?” – was answered unequivocally by local graphic artist and Photoshop expert, Tyler Brister. Hansborough and two other witnesses distinctly heard Brister mutter under his breath, toward the television, “Photoshop. Duh.”
Hansborough has been described by her husband, Mark, as “an adman’s wet dream” because she believes wholeheartedly in what any and all advertising sells her. “I have a garage full of once-used weight loss and exercise equipment to prove it,” said Mark. So the proclamation from Brister that Cenegenics may have tweaked the photographs used in their ad came as a shock to Hansborough despite the fact that for years Mark has pointed out numerous faked photos and videos that she has excitedly told him about.
“Mark’s such a buzzkill,” said Hansborough. “He and Tyler have been best friends forever so he thinks he knows all the Photoshop tricks from him. I’ll forward these amazing photos to Mark and get so excited and all he’ll say is, ‘Photoshop.’ My entire family now considers him a Photoshop snob and refuses to send him any cute Youtube videos. Like that one with the dancing squirrel – Mark just walked in and pointed out variations in lighting, halos, feathering, and a lot of other nonsense he says is proof."
“Are you saying that picture isn’t real?” queried Hansborough to Brister.
Several in attendance said that the room got eerily quiet as Brister explained to Hansborough that while the picture was “real,” it was a combination of two photos and that, in fact, Brister himself had done the graphic design portion of the ad in question. “It’s the first time I’ve seen it,” said Brister. “Normally, with freelance stuff like this, I don’t really ever get to see the finished product. So this was kind of cool.”
Hansborough then dived into specifics about Cenegenics, but Brister was of little help. “Cene-what? Cenegenics?” said Brister. “I don’t know anything about that. I rarely know anything about the product. The assignment comes in: put this head on this body. No problem, that’s what I do for a living.”
Brister went on to explain that in his estimation, 90% of his job entails putting a specific head on a specific body. The other 10% involves turning perfectly attractive women into unrealistic cartoon versions of themselves with breast augmentation, waist reduction and the removal of minor skin blemishes.
Hansborough was utterly flummoxed. “So you’re saying Cenegenics doesn’t work?”
“I have no idea,” answered Brister. “I’m simply saying that I put an old guy’s head on a young guy’s body. Nothing more, nothing less.”
Mark stood off to the side with a smirk on his face. He then looked at his wife and mouthed the words, “I told you so.”