VSCO: Adding Mood to Photos Through Filter

Editing photos is a major part of content creation. Of course, the foundation for a perfect Instagram post is a great photo. Cropping effectively, fine-tuning color, and playing with lighting can take a great photo to an amazing photo! I use VSCO (free iOS app) to filter photos taken on both my DSLR and iPhone cameras.

I had been using a very minimal filter on my photos to give them a soft, natural appearance. This worked so well with product shots taken against a white background! I really wanted to add more depth and mood to my Instagram profile, especially with the amount of face shots I was sharing. To create more impact, I wanted to choose a new preset that would enhance the contrast created by using flash photography.

Ultimately, I wanted bolder colors to “pop” more without being oversaturated. I still wanted my feed to look crisp and clean. While I initially wanted to go warmer with my photos, I decided to give that brightened effect, I would have to go cooler.

I’ve saved my edits as a recipe on the VSCO app, but I also go in and adjust brightness, contrast, or color as I see fit for an individual photo. Let me show you.



Here’s the photo I’ll be editing. As you can see, it’s a decent photo to begin with. Using flash on my DSLR, I posed in front of a solid background with a little bit of natural lighting.

Since I am a beauty blogger, the purpose for my photos is to highlight certain beauty products. In this case, I wanted to keep the “glowy” effect of my skin.

To create that editorial Glossier vibe, I went with VSCO preset N1 from the New Modern pack. Right off the bat, you will see that the photo transforms. I messed around with the preset a little and saved these parameters as a recipe:

Now, I can go ahead and use this recipe on all my photos. Using the same filters on all of your Instagram photos creates a consistency that is very aesthetically pleasing.

After the Edit


Another Before and After



In this case, I also cropped the photo. I mostly chose this crop because it hides the tangled hair that’s visible in the original photo! Draw focus away from distractions using the crop feature.

I hope this post was helpful to you if you are trying to up your Instagram or blogging game. I’ve found that creating consistency through photo editing makes a big difference in the perceived quality of your content.

Do any of you use VSCO? Let me know your favorite presets, what types of photos you use them for, and why you choose certain filters. Also, if you have any photo-editing tricks up your sleeve, be sure to share them below! I’m always looking to learn more and improve my photos.

P.S. If you aren’t already following me on Instagram, please do! I like to poll my followers to find out what content you’d like to see next. I think Instagram is just the easiest platform to get feedback on. Regardless, I love hearing the comments you have to offer on my blog posts, so let me know your thoughts below!

The Offbeat Venusian

Psalm 25:15 My eyes are ever toward the Lord, for He shall pluck my feet out of the net. 

Thank you for taking the time to hear what I have to say. I hope you’ve found something helpful, or at the very least interesting. You can keep up with my beauty adventures by following me on Instagram @offbeatvenusianI also share my favorite photo memories from travel and life on my photo diary Instagram account @offbeatandaway. Instagram isn’t your vibe? I’m on Facebook, too. If you have any questions or comments, I always love hearing what you have to say. You can comment below or you can contact me here.

Email Updates- The Offbeat Venusian Blog

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