Exactly!There is no varnish on one nail and, as was already noted, no locomotive either. So what? If this were a "formal portrait of a woman", whatever that means, we would also correct the varnish on her other fingers, the lack of makeup, the blemishes on her legs, the harsh front light, weird perspective and then probably the clothes and pose as well. Then it would be a completely different picture and, I think, not necessarily a better one. That particular picture is quite engaging, because it is not a "formal portrait" but shows what is objectively a young attractive woman in an unusual way.
Anyone can take a "formal portrait" but not anyone can take an interesting portrait.
To me, Will gave us an immediately engaging Portrait.
Nicolas surprised us by make it more compelling with a remarkably effective crop, that I certainly had not imagined.
...and as you imply that “fixing” that nail would not only have made a different picture
....but in addition seems implied that we’d then have ruined a key part of the “proof of authenticity” of the picture that perhaps, subconsciously makes it so valuable.
“Vogue” is valuable in that it perhaps, it gives women the wanted delusion that they cannot find in a mirror!
OTOH, the natural blemish, pen in a pocket or shaving cut, each build in our minds the authenticity and worth we value in a real person.
This is so important as we fear getting advice from a pretty shape in plastic, but love a word from friendly strangers, reaching out and acknowledging us!
More than that, anyway, as a general rule in art, perfection can be the mortal enemy of wonderful!
Perhaps these are two sides of the same coin.
I have always loved this photograph by Will, but now I value it more and have learned from you and Nicolas such a lot!