Thoughts on Instagram and similar apps

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No instagram, just careful exposure. iPhone 4

It seems that there are several distinctive ‘looks’ that amateur photographers recognize and try to replicate:

- High contrast black and white, sometimes with extra grain, usually all in focus
– Solarized/ retina-searing color, usually all in focus
– Partial bleach-bypass cross-processed color, usually with uneven depth of field or obvious lens flaws (Holga-with-expired-film)
– Very shallow depth of field of any sort
– The ‘miniature effect’ – pseudo tilt-shift

Originally, these styles were either conscious artistic decisions, or the consequences of not enough money and using expired film. They were chosen precisely because they looked unique – either because it was a difficult thing to execute well (using tilt-shift lenses, for instance) or because nobody else did it (cross-processing). The only exception to this is the high contrast black and white style, which was more a consequence of the limitations of the film chemistry at the time, and the requirements a picture of any recognizable description under difficult lighting conditions over fine grain.

However, now that we have a choice of how we process our images – and there’s sufficient latitude even in files from point and shoot cameras – a proliferation of either in-camera modes, filters or apps has taken hold of the photography industry, each claiming to be all you need produce one or all of the above styles.

I’ve got mixed feelings about this. On one hand, it takes the skill out of actually having to do any of these things (learn to process B&W properly, either chemically or in Photoshop, for instance); on the other, it does make crappy camera phone shots a lot more pleasant to look at. Until you’ve seen perhaps five, after which they’re all the same anyway – you might as well just have say five or ten random images that come out of the filter, regardless of what you actually shot – after all, you want your grab shot to look like a HC-B, right?

Yes and no. While filters and apps are great for improving the ease of getting the look you want and promoting the general democratization of photography, it’s also sad to see that the vast majority of people can’t tell the difference between a sloppily applied filter, an Instagram shot, and something that was actually done intentionally with full control. It’s even sadder to see that there are a lot of internet ‘photographers’ and bloggers who claim to be the best thing since sliced bread, but would be completely lost without Silver Efex or similar. Strip the artifice away, and what are you left with? A shot with extremely weak composition.

This isn’t so say that mobile phones are useless as capture devices; far from it. My previous article on using the iPhone as a camera is very much in support of it. If you learn the limitations of your device, you don’t need to resort to overcooked processing to mask its inherent limitations – blown highlights or blocked up shadows, for example. There are definitely undoubted advantages – instant connectivity, the ability to share and abundant abundant processing power all come to mind. Apps that come close to replicating the functionality and control of Photoshop – PhotoForge is a good example – make a very good argument for what an intelligent camera can do.

I’ve long maintained that all of these post-capture applications – be they photoshop or filters – cannot materially add to or take away from the composition of the image, because that’s the one thing that’s baked in at the time of capture. No matter how badly you botch the processing, if it’s a strong shot, it will always remain a strong shot whether in B&W, or color, or run through the Holgarize filter on your iPhone. However, the reverse of course applies: garbage in, garbage out. Composition aside, everything else is merely distraction. The problem is when the distraction portion is so great that the viewer can’t tell the difference, or worse, is drawn in at first by the distraction then disappointed by the lack of substance – I admit it happens to me a lot when browsing through images on flickr.

Put it this way: putting effort into learning how to compose properly will pay off in a much bigger way than putting effort into figuring out which button does what on the app. Or if you want to do both, then at least your image will have some substance to it.

If I sound a bit cynical and bitter about the whole thing, it’s not because I see people doing things with ease that I do the manual way – far from it; if there is an easier, faster workflow I’m usually the first to adopt it. What bothers me is that there are plenty of these ‘photographers’ who are not only ignorant about what they’re doing – ‘oh, I’ll use the Velvia filter’ – without actually knowing what Velvia is, or how it’s actually meant to look. Worse still, they get preachy about it and suddenly become an authority on slide film because they have an app or a button that says so. Never mind the fact that some of us shot commercial product jobs with multiple lights on slide, back in the day when you had to calculate guide numbers manually…man, I sound old.

Remember: it’s a tool, not a religion, and before you spout opinions, make sure you can back them up – it’s quite possible the other person you’re talking to has forgotten more than most people ever learn about the particular topic you’re talking about, but is just too polite to say anything about it. With that, I stand ready to be corrected. MT

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Comments

  1. I seriously can’t stand instagram etc. Or even use of camera phones. Fine if others do but I believe there is no skill, no craft, no mastery of the medium involved with using these things and creativity of the artists suffers long term when relying on something out of the box that everyone else can do.

    No, it’s not for me.

  2. Ming, I stumbled upon your site accidently whilst searching for OMD E-M5 reviews. Just purchased one and am having a love affair with it. Your site as is your photography, simply wonderful. I know blogging takes allot of time. Your information is informative, timely, succinct and very well thought out. I’m kina wondering if you were in the tech field before how you’ve come about know so much about the specific mechanical composition or working of camera gear? Love to know more about that. Just wanted to leave you a comment and thank you for sharing your superb work and sharing it so openly. A bit jealous of your travels, ahhh, but I have some nice travels this coming year including Paris and Asia. Be well my friend. Your blog is now an iPad favorite for me.

    • Thanks for your compliments, Marc. I’m a full time photographer now but was a corporate raider before (senior director at a couple of MNCs, before waking up one morning and deciding ‘now or regret it forever’.) I’m a physicist by training, a hobby engineer and a design consultant in various fields previously. I was also editor of a photography magazine for several years. My knowledge of cameras is partially because I’ve got a good relationship with most of the companies who supply my gear, and partially because I’m curious and own screwdrivers :) I suppose you could say this site is the culmination of all of that…safe travels!

      • Ming, just spent quite a while perusing your blog. My thought was an engineer after more reading. Physicist totally makes sense. I think its wonderful that you are doing what you want. Working for yourself, is not for everybody, but when it works and you are passionate about like you are [an myself too], it the best of all worlds. Not like work, but paid to play in our wonderful field. Safe travels to you my friend. If you find yourself in the states, specifically Southern California, let me know, drinks are on me.
        p.s. What part of the world do you live in?
        p.p.s. I saw my Omega Speedmaster in their. My wife bought it for a wedding present for me. Used to have a Rolex Sea Master and much prefer the Omega. Most likely the only watch I’ll ever need for the rest of my life. My dad has his dad’s wafer thin gold, Pilippe Patek that i believe my grandfather purchase for under a grand some 50 years ago. I’ll inherit it someday. But I’m not in a rush for it.

        • There are 300 articles on here to date (give or take a few), and north of 300,000 words of content, so you might be perusing for some time :)

          Passion only gets you so far – at some point, it does become about paying the bills. But, three months down, so far so good. Fingers crossed it stays that way.

          I’m in Kuala Lumpur, but I travel around Asia a bit and Europe, too – our local market is frankly rather ignorant and undeveloped when it comes to photographic clients; most of mine are outside the country. I’ll definitely drop you a line if I’m out there – in fact, I think I should make a habit of doing reader meet ups if I’m traveling…there are a lot of people in various parts of the world who’ve expressed interest.

          I don’t think you can get anything from Patek Philippe these days under a grand, not even a strap…prices have gone crazy. I have to either buy second hand, or work out contra deals…

      • Ming I agree. Passion will only get you so far. I’m lucky though to have combined my passion with doing what I love and that is running a successful photography studio for over a decade. Although I venture to say you are passionate and making a living too. Keep doing what you are doing and you will flourish.

  3. I agree with your point that applying a preset filter is not the the same as having full control over the editing of an image…. but I’m not quite sure I get you on the silver efex vs. photoshop thing. How is a like Silver Efex any less “pure” or basic a processing tool than something like photoshop? Both of them are just different interfaces to manipulate the same digital data. Silver efex offers pre-set filters, but they’re mostly a starting point for further editing. Lightroom and Photoshop offer the same thing, even if it’s not as baked in.
    I know Silver Efex makes a lot of references to traditional film techniques, and has film simulations – but i’m not sure that takes away, or cheapens the experience of working with “actual’ film, rather it reminds me that I’m working with a photograph, and not merely a “digital image”. Digital photography has always borrowed the vocabulary of analogue photography, and far from that being a bad thing, I think that may be what keeps film in the game at all – I think all this interest in faux-retro photography techniques is actually encouraging *some* people to go out and buy film cameras again, I know I did.

    Great post though, love your work.

    • Silver Efex on its own doesn’t give you the same control that Photoshop does. You can replicate most of the darkroom techniques directly – most importantly, dodge and burn – which you can’t do with Silver Efex. Most of the great B&W images you see have had this process done, but done skillfully enough that you can’t really tell without having seen the original. Bottom line: I know that I can’t produce the same tonality with any filter that I normally do with my Photoshop workflow.

      Digital photography isn’t the same as analog photography. Using the same language to describe it works up to a point, but I think it’s complete nonsense to describe this button as ‘add Rodinal’ for instance, when a) it’s not really an accurate representation/ effect, and b) it’s meaningless for most users of the program. I think a lot of people who do land up going back to film are finding it very different to the plugins, and in an odd way, probably more satisfying too…

      • No offence, but i need to take you through my SilverEfex workflow one day. It’s really more complicated than what you make it sound (unless you use a pre-set, which i don’t — well i do, but i created the pre-set myself based on several variations of B&W processing i like, so that doesn’t count; it’s just like a Photoshop action).

        As a web developer in my early days working for the infamous Leonard Foo (him of MIR FTZ fame), i was full exposed to the power of Photoshop. I know what it can do, and how powerful layers and masks are. And yes, pretty complex for the uninitiated. The bar on entry into understanding PS and using it well is certainly quite high. It exists and it works, but just because of its power and versatility, it doesn’t make it the be all and end all of professional grade processing.

        And yes, for the record, SilverEfex does dodge and burn (and a lot more than that). It just doesn’t call it that. :) I’ll show you how next time.

  4. SilverEfex is a useful tool for creating black and white images from digital color.
    As for the others, my feelings are not mixed at all. The first time I saw a “cross-processed” digital picture, I thought “Oh, interesting.” The second and third times, not so much. By the 200th time, I was pretty much inclined to just skip over any picture that had had any of these effects applied. I’m open to any creative process, but this has nothing to do with creativity; now it’s just a signal that the creator is deep and artsy.
    A few weeks ago, I came across a web site purporting to show “50 up and coming New York photographers.” Of the 50, fully 35 had presented pictures with the “I-left-my-film-in-the-hot-car” filter, or the faded Polaroid filter, or the cross-processed filter. (Probably the rest used one of the other filters that you mentioned, but I didn’t notice.) There were interviews with the “artists” in which it was mostly clear that, as you noted, they had no clue what “Velvia,” or “cross-processed” actually meant. Some seemed to believe that color photography actually looked like that “in the day.”
    As an old film guy, all of these effects meant that either I or my film lab had made a disastrous mistake, and the pictures were ruined. I can’t get past the aura of failure that they convey.
    As a TV personality in the US said about Facebook’s purchase of Instagram: “They paid a BILLION? Of dollars? For something that basically ruins your pictures?”
    The only hope is that it’s a fad, and that soon it will be yesterday’s fad, and go away.

    • I have a new theory about this: people like it because it’s different to what they’ve seen; most of us pros have been striving for perfect color and tone (and still are) – which is much more difficult to make a big wow with unless you get it spot on. The tough part with digital is you’ve got the viewing medium to contend with; somehow I don’t think many people are using calibrated monitors. However, this does (hopefully) mean that once the ‘my-camera-has-light-leaks-and-I’m-using-x-rayed-film’ filter gets too commonplace, we’ll stop seeing it. And I can’t wait for that day.

  5. yoshi360 says:

    I absolutely agree with you. Very often a fake-vintage filter is added to make a picture look interesting. But if it isn’t interesting by itself, the filter can’t do anything besides mask that lack of quality for a very short amount of time (until the viewer realizes this). I also dislike that filters often seem to be applied to pictures just for the sake of applying filters. Any filter, no matter if it’s B&W or cross processing or those stupid sepia effects, should only be applied to a picture if it can enhance the picture in some way. B&W puts a focus on patterns and lines, various cross processing filters can change the colors in a way that emphasizes the mood or just makes for a unique visual appearance, and so on. It’s quite okay to experiment with filters, but often it seems to me the addition of filters is merely a reflex after having taken an image. As if this was something that just “had to be done”, with no real vision behind it. There are a lot of Instagram photos that don’t really show the “why”.

    There is one thing I disagree with you though: You are suggesting real B&W, be it chemically or in Photoshop, has to be learned. But at the same time, you mention SilverEfex of being like Instagram, a simple filter for people who can’t create strong compositions. I think this is unfair, because SilverEfex is a really powerful tool and certainly one of the best ways to create digital B&W images. Sure you could settle for one of its presets (which are indeed inspired by old analogue techniques), but that just doesn’t do the app justice.

    • There are a lot of photos, period, that don’t really show any kind of why. That ‘must shoot it’ reflex as you call it is very much part of the modern photography gestalt; I find myself shooting a lot less these days – perhaps partially because it’s a job as opposed to a hobby, but I think mainly because I’m thinking a lot more before I do shoot – the net volume of keepers is the same, but the keeper rate is higher.

      I don’t think SilverEfex gives you enough control. There are a lot of conversion techniques that create decent B&W conversions, but none of them will be perfect for every subject – which invariably will require a different curve or different local contrast adjustments via dodge and burn – this is why I’m saying that you have to learn the mechanics of the conversion in order to understand how to perfectly optimize each image.

      • yoshi360 says:

        With SilverEfex you can locally change contrast, exposure and structure. And of course SilverEfex supports curves, too, as well as color filters.

        • It supports everything photoshop can do, but whilst trying to give you adjustments across different axes (if that makes sense). I don’t honestly think it adds anything if you know what you’re doing with Photoshop – personally, I’ve not had a single image which I thought would have been improved by using it. Of course, we can always agree to disagree :)

      • yoshi360 says:

        I know what you mean, but I don’t think the way Photoshop does things is the only right way to do things. In other words – SilverEfex might not be more powerful than Photoshop, but it offers a vastly different UI that’s obviously optimized for B&W and which is highly flexible in some areas. The patented u-point technology for example is one of its biggest strength, offering an extremely flexible and quick alternative to conventional masks. Photoshop is a great tool and there is little it can’t do (good noise reduction comes to mind), but it’s basically a general purpose tool for everything image-related. SilverEfex is one of those specialists that just shine because of their specialized UI, and personally I love it for exactly that even though I’m not bad in Photoshop (same goes for Viveza). It’s also significantly faster in operation than just-go-grab-a-coffee-it’s-gonna-take-a-while-till-I’m-done-starting-up-over-here Photoshop.

        You’re right, this is a matter of personal preference and it’s absolutely not a problem if we disagree on the benefits of Silver Efex. I just felt it’s more powerful than you gave it credit in your article, because though there are similarities, it’s still a far cry from simple filter collections like Instagram.

        • Very true. It *may* be possible to do what I want it do do, but I just don’t have the time to spend on it – it’s a rare commodity for me these days :) So I’m going to stick to the workflow I know and which has become intuitive over the years. I can get something passable out of Silver Efex, but I need to muck around with it for a good five minutes or so – my normal PS workflow (assuming there’s no retouching or dust spotting for commercial images) is a minute or less, by comparison.

  6. oh, and here is one that escaped from the chaff for me!

    play. with me.

    Even with me being a cat person and all!

    • Hmmmmm…I’m going to refrain from saying anything. :)

      • Yeah I know, cliche on cliche…its the only one in my “favourites” like that, and it does make me smile. My mission now is to find a proper photo within these “Instagram” styles, that doesn’t rely on hitting the “awwwww” button to create a reaction. You have any that fit the bill you want to share Ming?

  7. As a newcomer to photography, you might expect me to fall into the “wow, hipstamatic/instagram is sooooo cool! Look at this awesome picture of my half-eaten sandwich!” category. With some relief I can say that I have managed to become enthralled by photography in the current age whilst bypassing this phenomenon entirely (well almost). Frankly, I am bored and disappointed by the endless stream of dull, same-looking smartphone shots proliferated on social networking sites. To me, it would be the equivalent of a whole generation of painters all choosing to paint the same bowl of fruit with the same palette of colours. The upside for genuine photographers using these processes knowingly is that if their images manage to catch the eye amongst all the chaff, then they must be doing something right!

Trackbacks

  1. […] based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make” (Ingram). Therefore, these photographers view these filters as a tool that cheapens their own […]

  2. […] of these pretty hazes originated from processes coveted either for their artistic or unique merits, as photographer and blogger Ming Thein explains: “Originally, these styles were either conscious artistic decisions, or the consequences of […]

  3. [...] it. But why am I against it? My full (and definitely not-objective) thoughts can be found in this article, but the gist is that basically you’re outsourcing a large chunk of the creative decision [...]

  4. [...] of these pretty hazes originated from processes coveted either for their artistic or unique merits, as photographer and blogger Ming Thein explains: ”Originally, these styles were either conscious artistic decisions, or the consequences of [...]

  5. [...] Instagram满足了人类的两个欲望,一个是炫耀,还有一个是假装拥有自己没有的才能,这一点靠的就是神奇的滤镜。当我们夸赞一张Instagram上的照片时,一般不是因为照片反映了作者独特的艺术造诣,而仅仅是因为滤镜。摄影师Ming Thein在自己的博客中说:“这些照片的背后既没有深思熟虑后的艺术加工,也不是因为缺钱所以用过期胶卷处理得到的效果。它们的存在只是因为它们看起来很独特——不管是因为这种效果通过人工处理很难实现(比如移轴特效)或者只是因为没有人试过这种特效(比如交叉处理)。”Instagram让普通人能使用这种技艺,抹杀了其本来的价值。有了Instagram你根本不用去掌握摄影的种种微妙艺术,比如如何处理白平衡,或者如何布局背景光线。 [...]

  6. [...] The very basis of Instagram is not just to show off, but to feign talent we don’t have, start&#105&#110&#103 with the filters themselves. The reason we associ&#97&#116&#101 the look with “cool” in the first place is that many of these pretty hazes or&#105&#103&#105nated from processes coveted either for their arti&#115&#116&#105c or unique merits, as photographer and blogger Mi&#110&#103&#32Thein explains: ” [...]

  7. [...] Instagram满足了人类的两个欲望,一个是炫耀,还有一个是假装拥有自己没有的才能,这一点靠的就是神奇的滤镜。当我们夸赞一张Instagram上的照片时,一般不是因为照片反映了作者独特的艺术造诣,而仅仅是因为滤镜。摄影师Ming Thein在自己的博客中说:“这些照片的背后既没有深思熟虑后的艺术加工,也不是因为缺钱所以用过期胶卷处理得到的效果。它们的存在只是因为它们看起来很独特——不管是因为这种效果通过人工处理很难实现(比如移轴特效)或者只是因为没有人试过这种特效(比如交叉处理)。”Instagram让普通人能使用这种技艺,抹杀了其本来的价值。有了Instagram你根本不用去掌握摄影的种种微妙艺术,比如如何处理白平衡,或者如何布局背景光线。 [...]

  8. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  9. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  10. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  11. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  12. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  13. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  14. [...] Instagram满足了人类的两个欲望,一个是炫耀,还有一个是假装拥有自己没有的才能,这一点靠的就是神奇的滤镜。当我们夸赞一张Instagram上的照片时,一般不是因为照片反映了作者独特的艺术造诣,而仅仅是因为滤镜。摄影师Ming Thein在自己的博客中说:“这些照片的背后既没有深思熟虑后的艺术加工,也不是因为缺钱所以用过期胶卷处理得到的效果。它们的存在只是因为它们看起来很独特——不管是因为这种效果通过人工处理很难实现(比如移轴特效)或者只是因为没有人试过这种特效(比如交叉处理)。”Instagram让普通人能使用这种技艺,抹杀了其本来的价值。有了Instagram你根本不用去掌握摄影的种种微妙艺术,比如如何处理白平衡,或者如何布局背景光线。 [...]

  15. [...] Instagram满足了人类的两个欲望,一个是炫耀,还有一个是假装拥有自己没有的才能,这一点靠的就是神奇的滤镜。当我们夸赞一张Instagram上的照片时,一般不是因为照片反映了作者独特的艺术造诣,而仅仅是因为滤镜。摄影师Ming Thein在自己的博客中说:“这些照片的背后既没有深思熟虑后的艺术加工,也不是因为缺钱所以用过期胶卷处理得到的效果。它们的存在只是因为它们看起来很独特——不管是因为这种效果通过人工处理很难实现(比如移轴特效)或者只是因为没有人试过这种特效(比如交叉处理)。”Instagram让普通人能使用这种技艺,抹杀了其本来的价值。有了Instagram你根本不用去掌握摄影的种种微妙艺术,比如如何处理白平衡,或者如何布局背景光线。 [...]

  16. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  17. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  18. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  19. [...] Coincidentally, another rant about Instagram appeared at The Atlantic on the exact same day as Bevan’s piece, this one by Atlantic Wire staff writer Rebecca Greenfield. In it, Greenfield looks at the recent meme known as “Rich Kids of Instagram,” which makes fun of the cheesy snapshots that presumably wealthy users have taken of themselves with helicopters, famous people, etc. Like Bevan, the Atlantic writer also talks about how the filters Instagram features were actually based on classic photographic effects that often took a lot of money and time to produce, a point professional photographers also like to make. [...]

  20. [...] of these pretty hazes originated from processes coveted either for their artistic or unique merits, as photographer and blogger Ming Thein explains: ”Originally, these styles were either conscious artistic decisions, or the consequences of [...]

  21. [...] of these pretty hazes originated from processes coveted either for their artistic or unique merits, as photographer and blogger Ming Thein explains: ”Originally, these styles were either conscious artistic decisions, or the consequences of [...]

  22. [...] of these pretty hazes originated from processes coveted either for their artistic or unique merits, as photographer and blogger Ming Thein explains: ”Originally, these styles were either conscious artistic decisions, or the consequences of [...]

  23. [...] However, now that we have a choice of how we process our images – and there’s sufficient latitude even in files from point and shoot cameras – a proliferation of either in-camera modes, filters or apps has taken hold of the photography industry, each claiming to be all you need produce one or all of the above styles.  [...]

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