VSCO Is Back! Can Adobe Alum Make Them Great Again?

The big news today is that VSCO is making a return. Not that they were gone, but we haven’t heard very much about them for a while now. When they first launched, VSCO felt like a community that would take on Instagram the same way EyeEm did. While the latter seemingly turned their editors into AI algorithms, the former became quietly focused on itself. VSCO is still around and has worked on many ways to make your photos look cool, and they’ve been hard at work on other things. Today, they’re announcing that former Adobe employees have hopped onboard to their upper management. Will this make them the apple of a photographer’s eye again?

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So, here’s the big question: what now? How will VSCO evolve for creators, photographers, and video makers? If the recent hires are anything to consider, it seems like they’re going to try taking on Adobe in some ways. According to the company’s press release, a bunch of folks from both Adobe and Figma joined. (Admittedly, I’ve never heard of Figma, but they let designers collaborate on projects.) So if you look at it, it seems they’re going to take on the Adobe Creative Cloud in some way or another. 

And to VSCO I say, “Good for you!”

Adobe has dominated the field for photographers for years. Our staff uses Capture One because we feel it’s better for making nicer-looking pictures. With Capture One making a type of cloud service later on, we’re pretty excited at the possibilities. And that makes me wonder if VSCO will launch its own version as well.

What’s more, I wonder if VSCO will launch its own cloud service and revamp its community to make it a better space for photographers. It’ll be really nice to not be recommended millions of images of scantily clad women when I double-tap the image of a photographer or a model I support. What’s more, I hope VSCO gives both sides equal attention and doesn’t follow Adobe’s mistakes. Adobe’s Behance is wonderful, but I wish they gave it more love. 

According to the press release, here’s what new today:

Introducing VSCO Spaces

VSCO is launching Spaces, shared galleries built by creators and those who inspire them. These collaborative galleries are visual conversations for creators to share work and feedback while growing meaningful connections. This feature will be available to VSCO members beginning today, and will be rolled out to all users in July.

Studio updates

Users will notice an update to their Studio, which will include more detailed descriptions of creators’ favorite presets and tools and how best to apply them in addition to draft support and auto-save for all media types.

Collage Mode

Collage is the latest feature in VSCO’s multimedia creation suite. Collage provides an intuitive way for VSCO members to remix photos with shapes, colors and more, with the help of layouts. This tool will give VSCO members more ways to reimagine images into visually compelling compositions.

Looking ahead, VSCO believes in fueling a healthy creator economy to drive further success. The company is in the early stages of unlocking new ways to empower creators to monetize their work both in the app and on the website.

The VSCO app is free for both iOS and Android with access to basic presets and tools. VSCO Membership is $29.99 per year and $7.99 per month with a limited time, risk-free 30-day trial.

Personally, I’m pretty excited for the newly revamped VSCO. I’ve looked at our archives on stories we’ve done on VSCO, and I hope they’ll be launching more and better things besides just presets for photographers. These new additions are a hopeful start.

Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.