Time Magazine Cover Mocked for Bad Photoshop, But It’s the Artist’s Style

Brittney Griner Time Mag

The latest Time magazine cover, which features embattled basketball player Brittney Griner, has been mocked for being a “high school Photoshop” job.

The front page shows an image of Griner, the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) star that was arrested in Russia on drug charges, that Time commissioned Lorna Simpson, a photographer and multimedia artist, to create.

A viral Facebook post by Old Row Sports slated Time’s front cover, writing: “Bruh, Time just dropped some high school Photoshop onto the cover of their magazine.”

The Facebook page highlighted the crude cutting-out technique by drawing circles around parts of the photograph that has been edited. Griner’s hair still has the background of the original image clearly visible with it even sticking out from one side making her head shape look odd.

The image contains Griner’s shoulders as well as her head, but the shoulders have drifted unnaturally far from the cranium, and the neck is clumsily cut out with harsh lines.

“Whoa! Amateurish! At the very least the Smudge tool would have been an improvement,” wrote Marco Lagana.

However, Simpson is known for this technique. Using obviously cut-out selections and pasting them onto other images, in a magazine collage style.

“If anyone actually read the article they would know the artwork was intentional,” points out Johnny Prescott.

The portrait of Griner was taken by photographer Stephen Gosling and is just a standard headshot of the basketball star in her WNBA uniform. Time says that “Simpson created an image that reimagined a standard media-day portrait.”

“The collage centers Griner’s steadfast gaze, but with her uniform superseded by a celestial overlay of meteor showers—taken from a 19th-century print—that extends into the background,” writes Cady Lang for Time.

Controvery Surrounding the Case

While a few commentators remarked on Simpson’s unusual Photoshop approach, most people are infuriated with the basketball star’s case. Many people blame Griner for breaking another country’s law.

Today, a court in Russia found her guilty of smuggling .702 grams of cannabis oil into the country and sentenced her to nine and a half years.

Griner addressed the judge today, saying that she “never meant to break any law.” She says that the vape cartridges containing cannabis oil were packed by mistake.

The sentencing is expected to be a formality, with the length of her detainment depending upon negotiations for a prisoner swap between the United States and Russia.

Image credits: Header photo courtesy of Time magazine.