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VSCOpycats: The Sad Truth About Filters


Let's throw it back to 2010:

Back when Instagram took the world by surprise. Yes, back when it was the hub for all 1D and JB fan clubs; and yes, back when your favorite filters were Nashville and Valencia.

Presets and filters have become both a blessing and curse in the world of visual arts. Nowadays, you no longer need to edit photos individually, or start from scratch every time you go through your photosets; you just click a saved presets and voilà, there's your masterpiece.

If you ask your neighborhood photographer for editing advice, chances are he will say "bruh, you just download VSCO" [FYI: he probably torrented it]. That's exactly where the problem lies. Nope, not in piracy, but in enabling everyone to make their photos look pretty.

"Bro, check out this photo of my kicks hanging down a rooftop"

If you've heard this walking down the street, chances are you walked by a VSCOpycat.

"Check out this photo of some cool spiral stair" is another popular one. For those unfamiliar with the term, VSCOpycat derives from the greek VSCO and the Greco-Roman copycat. It's a term given to anyone who essentially slaps a filter on top of a shitty photo claiming it's #streetwear #streetphotography #art.

FACT: with every like/share/follow you give a VSCOpycat, you are contributing to society's poor taste and art standards. If all it takes is throwing a [purchased] filter on top of a dully-composed picture with weak subject matter, then anyone could be a photographer.

We live in a very interesting time, where anyone can 'fake it till they make it' with social media stats as validation. People no longer need to spend time learning color theory, curves, color grading, etc. All you need to do is click away! Think about it this way: you may have a shitty voice, but as long as you have a decent autotune software, you're set to break records. Did I mention VSCOpycats really like Future?

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