Posts Tagged ‘How magazines stretch models legs’


Make me feel real loose like a long legged goose!!!

May 4, 2010

Everyone knows that women’s magazine editors digitally alter photographs of models that appear in their mags. When I finally did the maths I was shocked.  See: Odd Bods in Marie Claire

This model had legs 89% longer than a standard size 12 model in the same edition of the magazine and with the same waist to hip measurement! Looking at this model made the standard size 12 model look like a dumpy little garden gnome. Looking at these images distorts our view of normal body sizes or anything close to it.

Models can be given the appearance of long legs by the angle of the camera (Looking up at the model on the catwalk, for instance), by wearing extra high stiletto heels and/or by wearing bathing costumes with high cut legs. Then photo editors use photoshop to stretch their legs.

While pictures of male models may be digitally altered to remove skin blemishes, body hair and add abs, it seems to me that their legs are not digitally stretched and certainly not by 89%! But we have this 89% number now and we should use it.

So Mathspigs here are some male celebrities with a standard pic and then with their legs – from the hip down – stretched by 89%.

This was very simple maths. I used photoshop to edit the pictures and set their legs at a 189% vertical stretch. 

Check the maths:

Standard leg length = 100%

Vertical Stretch        = 89%


Look at these pics and you decide if they look OK or ridiculous. I cannot decide for you. But I have thrown in the pics of the horse and the giraffe just to show how the practise of digitally stretching models images distorts reality. 

Here we go mathspigs. Lets play STRETCH LIMBO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Zac Efron

Maybe these

long legs would

help his

dancing, but…..  if he did the splits he’d never get up again.

Robert Pattison


Edward Cullen

in the Twilight series. See TWILIGHT MATHS II

Edward is an ethical vampire

at this height he’d have to chase giraffes.

Justin Beiber

As my photoshop leg stretching skills improved

I found that

our eye begins to accept legs stretched

from the top of the thigh but not higher up the body.

Check out these stretch-horses.

Both images have legs stretched by

89% but the second horse has been stretched from the mid-body point down. Now look at the normal horse. It looks like it has SHORT legs!!!!!!! These images have distorted our sense of reality.

Here are some sports stars.

Sam Gilbert plays Aussie Rules football 


PS: Mathspigs dad and two Uncles played for St Kilda.

My Dad broke his leg when he ran into the goal post. 

They sent him off to hospital using the local bus!!

This was along time ago.

My dad


two uncles

are in the

St Kilda team





Heath Grundy 


Aussie Rules 




Sydney Swans.


 Usain Bolt

 We would like to believe that Usain Bolt has long,

long legs.

 However he doesn’t need legs as long as the stretch photo suggest.

He is already the world’s fastest runner.


  The giraffe looks quite reasonable with extra long legs.

 Then again you could argue that

the real giraffe shape

is weird.

Now for a few rock stars.

 This is Vampire Weekend.

 The long Weekend is  Left.


Cut Off your Hands UNCUT is Right.

 This is the rock group GRIZZLY BEAR.

Look at the way our eye works.

Look at the guy in the shorts. His leg has been extended from the knee down. Looks wrong.

The guy in the black pants legs look OK even though extended 89%.

The guy squatting is totally distorted as his whole body and head have been stretched.

 Now you’ve seen a horse, a giraffe and a grizzly bear. 

Finally, a bit of fun.

Here are some fictional characters. 

Harry who???? The batman toy looks appears in proportion mainly because action figure toys are usually made with short muscly legs.


  – I used the standard 89% stretch here. I was hoping to give Spiderman legs like a spider.