Taking and sharing photos is a big thing on the iPhone, mainly because it’s just so convenient to have a very capable camera with you at all times that also happens to have instant access to the internet.
But, while sharing photos as they are right on the camera roll is what most people do, the right editing can vastly improve even the simplest photo, which is why in this entry we take a look at VSCO Cam, the free and very popular photo editing app for iPhone.
Ready? Let’s get started.
VSCO Cam Basics and Camera App
Developed by the Visual Supply Company, VSCO Cam is perhaps the best photo editing app for the iPhone. That’s expected though, since these are the same guys behind some of the finest image software out there, including several plugins for Lightroom, the popular photography software.
Even before you start using the app’s editing options, VSCO Cam shows it offers more depth than most other apps. For example, when you use the app’s camera option, you can not only define the focus and exposure points separately like with other similar apps, but you can also lock the white balance independently on top of that.
Library and Editing Tools
Being a photo editing app though, VSCO Cam’s library is where the meat of the app really is. To access it, slide the screen to the right to reveal the app’s main menu and there tap on Library.
VSCO Cam’s library provides the option to sort your photos in different ways, like showing you only photos you’ve edited, or just the ones you’ve flagged for example, which is very convenient for those used to do some heavy editing on their iPhones.
To start editing, tap on any photo to bring up the bottom toolbar. From there you can flag the photo, edit it, share it (through a quite extensive list of different social services) or delete it.
Choosing the Editing option (the icon of a wrench and a brush) reveals a set of free filters which are pretty excellent, giving you more than enough room to work with most of your photos.
You can also get almost 40 additional filters via an in-app purchase if you feel the ones available by default are not enough for your needs.
These filters are only the start though. Tapping on the white horizontal bar below them, you will be able to access four additional options in the form of icons: A paintbrush (currently active filters), half an arrow, which allows you to undo the previous step, a full arrow that lets you revert to the original version of the photo you are currently editing and a wrench that represents the advanced editing tools, which we’ll take a brief look at just now.
This set of advanced photo editing tools, while naturally not able to compete with any popular desktop application, is in itself pretty powerful and effective.
Among them you can find tools such as exposure, temperature, cropping, a really cool vignette tool and even a faux film grain that looks really nice with some photos.
And that’s about it for VSCO Cam. This app not only provides more tools than most comparable alternatives, but the quality of the results you can achieve with it easily surpass any other photo editing tool out there.
So, if you are looking for a photo editing app that is easy to use, that sports great default filters and, most importantly, that provides a nice set of advanced editing tools that make for really nice-looking photos, you should definitely give VSCO Cam a try, even more so considering the app is free.