These two images are a before and after. The first is a scan we made of the negative, the second is the final photographic print that was modified by the photographer in the printing.
Remember, these photographs were printed by hand in a darkroom! The way in which this is printed made Jackie's skin porcelain-like and emphasized John's rugged sturdiness. Notice that some of JFK's wrinkles, Jackie's dress along the back of her shoulders, a lock of hair on her right cheek, and a strand of hair by her left cheek were removed.
By burning and dodging, the half-moon on Kennedy's left sleeve—a darkroom processing mishap—has been removed. By darkening the sleeve and lengthening it, it changed the overall contrast and highlights of the couple's hands and faces. The brightness of the whites in the image emphasize the way we might read this image—JFK directly engages us by looking at us and Jackie's look of admiration towards him is more obvious. He is steady and poised with an openness and the support of his wife. How do you feel about him as he is presented in this picture? –Shannon, photography curator, National Museum of American History
Image 1, scan of negative, John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy by Richard Avedon, 1961. Gift of Richard Avedon. Catalog number 67.102.079N
Image 2, Gelatin silver print, John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy by Richard Avedon, 1961. Gift of Richard Avedon. Catalog number 67.102.079
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