This weekend, a severely cropped version of a Desperate Housewives publicity photo appeared on the IMDb homepage.
I clicked the image and saw the image you see here. My first thought was “You’re kidding, right?” I am no fan of Eva Longoria, but her being the subject of the photo wasn’t the cause of my reaction.
First, the image is crooked. The vertical lines all lean to the right. It’s not a result of perspective. The image is crooked, plain and simple. I have tilted the odd image because the subject looks better. They may be leaning at an angle or have their head tilted. This works fine when the subject nearly fills the image and the background is blurry or unremarkable. The problem here is the setting is an important part of the photograph’s story. If she had to stand with her ass sticking out in some weird attempt at sexiness, the photographer should have had her correct her tilt. Maybe she needed something under her left foot. Surely something in the bedroom could have served.
Second, and even more ridiculous, are the two stalkers! Note the two silhouettes cast on the wall behind the bed. Unless Longoria’s character is polygamous, polyamorous, or just likes having sex with two guys at the same time, these shadows are the photographer’s assistants looking so intently at Longoria’s goods, they didn’t notice they were standing in front of the lights they’d just set up for the photo. If it is an allusion to her having two men on the go, it’s executed poorly enough to look like a mistake.
Third is the framing. Why is there a huge expanse of nothingness above her head? Very few people are concentrating on a the window treatment. I thought perhaps the image was shot with later cropping in mind. While this may be true, the image has already been cropped. The aspect ratio of the photo is 4:3 and the camera used to shoot it takes 3:2 images. So some of the top or bottom has already been cropped. Too bad they didn’t finish the job. Also, her placement in the horizontal centre of the frame is particularly uninspired, but perhaps I ought to stop while I still can.
The photographer’s assignment was a shapely subject in a slinky dress and high heels. A plum assignment! Yet the result looks like he and his assistants (both of them) stood there like slack-jawed yokels who hadn’t seen a woman before.
Desperate Housewives publicity photo ©2007 ABC