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Filter My Life: A Humorous Short About Instagram, Its Rise, and Its Debacle


If you’ve been closely following the story of Instagram and its role in the world of casual photography, you might enjoy this humorous short film by photographer Grant McGuire. It’s titled “Filter My Life.”

McGuire says the whole thing started when he came across a post we published back in May 2012 about National Geographic prohibiting the use of Instagram-style filters for contest submissions:

To me this was apparently obvious. So obvious in fact I couldn’t think of a situation where any self respecting or head above shoulders photographer would NOT know this fact. Arguably sometimes we don’t catch the fine print on first glance but to me I thought this was exorbitantly obvious and well known.

I then had a thought. What if someone had zero clue about filters (which after travelling Europe you find out there are such individuals closed off from the American social flare). Not long after this blog I thought up a funny way to convey this. This project took longer than expected. Travel and work inhibited my ability to shoot on location however — something amazing happened. Instagram changed their Terms of Service (ToS). This upset many of their users even to the point of mass departures from the social network. This was just what I needed as a hook. We shot our last scene and we were done!

Here’s the gag reel from the short: