Most with a smart phone and eye for creative photography would probably already know about VSCO (pronounced visko).  It is also called VSCO Cam sometimes. This app has been around since 2012. I'm going to share what I love about VSCO and why it works for me. 

My current phone is the iPhone X, but have had VSCO on my phone right from the iPhone 5/6 version. Over time a lot of iPhone camera app has come and gone. Some boasting megapixels others with unnecessary features.  VSCO largely stayed the same with one major user interface change around 2016. Some notable research studies were made and here as well.

My love for VSCO comes for a few reasons

  • Their film emulation presets for recreating vintage film looks from Kodak, Agfa, and Ilford are pretty awesome. Film cameras or Film look/emulation to flat digital files will never go away until digital large format photography becomes lifelike and affordable for most.

  • A6, N1, SS2 & SS3 preset filter makes street photography look stunning. If street is your genre experiment with these. SS3 gives beautiful deep dark shadows. Great for moody photos

  • L2, L3 preset for landscape love. There are a whole lot here depending on whether you are shooting snow, mountains, seascape or even ariel.

  • The way the VSCO camera catches light and detail is almost a little better than the native iPhone camera. When using the camera function with VSCO touch the screen with 2 fingers to fine tune focus and exposure on different part of the scene. Shoot RAW, apply film simulation, and breathe your creativity into it.

  • The VSCO community are not focussed on likes or hash tagging and/or commenting or telling the world how great their lives are, unlike Instagram and Facebook.

  • There is no right or wrong in the VSCO community. There is no camera gear talk its all about using what phone you have and the filters that work for you.

  • Its a platform where creativity soar because you are devoid of self-affirmation and the number game of being liked and acknowledged

You can download VSCO here. There is also a paid membership of about US$20 per year for VSCO X membership. I’d recommend it if you like photography. That is less that US$3/month. 

It includes exclusive presets, transformation tools and a whole lot of VSCO education from around the globe. This is my second year of membership with them and I do enjoy the nuggets of wisdom I receive. Back in 2017 we spoke about this in our photography class in Vietnam with Eric Kim. Definitely a worthy membership in my view.

Amit Karmakar

378 Miller St, Cammeray, NSW 2062, Australia