I’ve been posting a series on food photography for bloggers and food businesses for the past few years now, and something that repeatedly comes up is the best VSCO filters to use for food photography.
While I use my DSLR for most of my professional food photography (both for freelance work and for the recipe shots I take for this blog), a lot of the food photos on my Insta are taken with my phone.
I always use VSCO to edit my photos (I have a post on my editing process in VSCO here) but sometimes a simple
This is going to be a quick post on my favourite filter in VSCO for food photos.
Read my other posts on improving your food photography:
- Taking better Food photos on your phone
- Editing them in my favourite free photo editing app (VSCO)
- Taking better food photos in winter (when natural light is hard to come by)
- Upping your food photography game by reading the most informative books on the topic
- Shooting your food photography in batches (so you can get more done)
- Editing photos on a PC or Mac in a more advanced (and free) browser-based tool, Pixlr
- Understanding why food photography is so essential for food businesses and bloggers
- Building Your Food Photography Kit
- Choosing the best VSCO filters for food photos
What is VSCO?
While there is functionality that you can choose to pay for, I’ve been using the free version of VSCO on Android for years and have never felt like I’m missing out on features that I could access in the paid version.
In the app, you can upload your photos and then edit them, either by manually adjusting settings or by
Why edit in VSCO instead of in Instagram?
Firstly, VSCO offers more editing options than the Instagram app, so you have more aspects of the image to play with.
The key draw of VSCO against editing directly in Insta though
The options to export also mean that you can edit a photo and then re-use it on other platforms, like Facebook, Twitter or on your stories, instead of it being ‘locked’ in Instagram.
How do you edit food photos in VSCO?
I won’t go into too much detail here, as I actually have a full step-by-step post on editing your food snaps in VSCO here.
When I’m editing food photos on-the-go using VSCO, I normally bring the exposure & contrast up, sharpen the image, take the saturation down and play with the white balance a little (usually taking the temperature down and the tint up a tiny bit).
My editing style has evolved over the years, and this is the way I currently have my Insta aesthetic styled (very pale, with moody pastel tones)*
*I’m very aware that using phrases like ‘my Insta aesthetic’ and ‘moody pastel tones’ makes me sound like a millennial wanker, but I don’t even care. I love working on having a pretty ‘gram so just let me live, mmkay?
What are the best VSCO filters for food photography?
Quick and simple as that manual edit was, sometimes you just want to get your photos out there fast.
As with Insta, thats where filters come in. The VSCO filters are a bit more subtle than the Instagram ones, so I still prefer to use VSCO even in a filters-only level rush.
There are 10 filters to choose from in the free version of VSCO. I tend to use F2 as my go-to filter on VSCO, but it really depends on the overall look and feel you’re going for.
Lets take a look at all the free filters, shall we?
- B1 – Monochrome filters aren’t the best for food, so I wouldn’t recommend
- B5 – Again, monochrome isn’t great for food, but if you prefer the black & white look, B5 is probably the best for food
- C1 – A bright filter, perfect for busy, colourful feeds
- F2 – This is my go-to VSCO filter for food photos, keeping them crisp but not over-saturated
- G3 – G3 probably comes a close second as my favourite VSCO filter
- M3 – This filter is best if you prefer the dark & moody look, again keeping the food crisp and not over-saturating the colours
- M5 – As with M3, this filter can be good for a ‘moody’ look, but with a little more colour
- P5 – P5 is a very dark filter, with lots of blue tones that can make food look quite
- T1 – I love T1 for moody landscapes, but it just makes food look indistinct and grey – probably my least favourite of the colour filters for food
- X1 – As with B1 and B5, monochrome just isn’t well-suited to food photography
The best VSCO filter really depends on the look and feel you’re going for. There is no one-size-fits-all answer, but my personal favourite is F2.