'This Woman Is Recreating Famous Celebrity Instagram Posts To Prove A Very Good Point' by Stefan Armitage in Viral Thread

"Scrolling down your Instagram feed is a perfect way of looking at how glamorous everyone else’s life is compared to yours, and realising you have to live the rest of your life filled with jealousy.

And perhaps there are no other people on this planet that make us feel worse about ourselves than celebrities. All that money, all that fame, and all that respect. Yes, no matter how many selfies you take in your gym leggings, you’re just never going to enjoy the lifestyle of the rich and famous.

Although, when you really strip back the filters on many celebrity posts, you begin to realise to how pointless they really are, and you think to yourself, “Could these people get away with this if they were a normal person?” One person who is determined to make the world aware of just how much crap celebrities post on their timelines is comedienne, Celeste Barber, who has her own Instgram account, mocking the poses and pictures posted by celebs."

See the images here.

' ‘Removed’: A Photographer Captures the Isolation Effect of Cellphones' by STEVE MOLLMAN in The Atlantic

"Eric Pickersgill’s eerie photo series serves as a reminder to put your devices away.

As we’re sucked in ever more by the screens we carry around, even in the company of friends and family, the hunched pose of the phone-absorbed seems increasingly normal. So the American photographer Eric Pickersgill created “Removed,” a series of photos that remind viewers how strange that pose actually is.

In each portrait, electronic devices have been edited out so that people stare at their hands, or the empty space between their hands, often ignoring beautiful surroundings or opportunities for human connection. The results are a bit sad and eerie—and a reminder, perhaps, to put our phones away."

Read the full article and see the photos here.

'From EyeEm, Technology to See and Tag Photos' by Mark Scott in The New York Times

Photograph by: Lorenz Aschoff

Photograph by: Lorenz Aschoff

"EyeEm, a photo-sharing service started in 2011 that has drawn parallels to Instagram, announced new technology in Brooklyn on Friday that uses a sophisticated algorithm and machine learning to analyze the details of online photos.

The technology, called EyeVision, automatically scans images and tags them with certain keywords, from “landscape” and “New York” to the perceived emotions of people in each photo, which makes them easier to find through web searches. 

While other companies have tried similar techniques to categorize online images, the German start-up’s efforts — which comes after roughly three years of development — are based on analyzing millions of photos already shared on EyeEm’s photo-sharing social network. The company has roughly 15 million users compared to about 300 million on Instagram."

Read the full article here.

'Instagram Exerts a Force in Beauty Trends' by BEE SHAPIRO in The New York Times

"In days, New York Fashion Week will inspire a burst of beauty trends. But are the runways still the best place to source fresh ideas?

Some would argue that Instagram has supplanted some of fashion week’s influence. This summer, at least, Instagram has driven the makeup conversation. Self-made beauty gurus like @Belladelune and @heidimakeupartist have enticed their followers to try “clown contouring,” “baking” and “strobing.”

Even if the terms sound new, the methods sometimes are not. "

Read the full article here.

'This algorithm can create a new Van Gogh or Picasso in just an hour' by Matt McFarland in The Washington Post

"While the great art of yesteryear was an exhaustive process to create, today the style of those masters can be mimicked in minutes. Last week German researchers released a paper detailing how a computer algorithm could be used to pump out images borrowing the styles of the world’s greatest artists.

“The key finding of this paper is that the representations of content and style in the convolutional neural network are separable. That is, we can manipulate both representations independently to produce new, perceptually meaningful images,” write the authors. Their paper has been submitted to Nature Communications. Leon Gatys, a PhD student at the University of Tuebingen is its lead author."

Read the full article here.

'Photography Just Can’t Make Up Its Mind About the Square' by JENNA GARRETT in WIRED

"Instagram’s DITCHING THE SQUARE , and everyone is freaking out. But the social network isn’t the first to champion the shape only to dump it later. Photography’s had an on-again, off-again relationship with the shape almost from the start.

Given that some 70 million photos are posted daily, that’s a lot of rectangles and circles and other shapes.

Instagram doesn’t offer any insightful, or especially compelling, arguments for embracing the 1:1 format. “Square is simple, it’s aesthetically pleasing, and it’s part of our DNA,” says product designer Christine Choi. Still, it’s not a surprise, given the app’s many nods to the bygone days of photography. The original Instagram logo all but mirrored the Polaroid OneStep SX‑70, for example. And there a plethora of filters make your pictures look like a Holga, or a Polaroid, or the washed-out photos every cheap camera of the 1970s made. Even as Instagram has revolutionized photography, it has nodded toward its roots."

Read the full article here.

"To View or Not to View: Viral Internet Images" by Joanna Schroeder in The Huffington Post

"As you probably already know, Lenny Kravitz recently experienced a pretty extreme wardrobe malfunction. The 51-year-old rocker was wearing leather pants while performing in Stockholm, and during a particularly impassioned squat with his guitar, his pants ripped, resulting in his entire groin region being exposed. Yes, the whole block and tackle fell out, and people photographed it.

There are a lot of tricky factors to this case. As many have noted, it's somewhat similar to the time Apple's iCloud service was hacked and hundreds of celebrities (mostly women) had their private nude photos splashed all over the internet, including Jennifer Lawrence and Gabrielle Union. It's also similar to crotch-level paparazzi photos that caught Lindsay Lohan and Anne Hathaway sans panties. Many argue that Kravitz's case is different because he was on stage, and when you're on stage you recognize that there will be people snapping photos."

Read the full article here.

'Copwatch vs. Cops: After Freddie Gray' by POH SI TENG in The New York Times

"In a year of violent police encounters, much of the conversation has been about cameras: Who should have them, what can they achieve and how can they improve the broken relationship between the police and African-American communities?

Copwatch, an organization created to document police activity and possible harassment, has been at the forefront of the activity since its founding in 1990. But in the wake of Michael Brown’s death in Ferguson, Mo., last August — after a white officer shot him and left his body in the road — the movement has gained a new urgency."

Read the full article and watch the video here.

'Yes, androids do dream of electric sheep' by Alex Hern in The Guardian

"What do machines dream of? New images released by Google give us one potential answer: hypnotic landscapes of buildings, fountains and bridges merging into one.

The pictures, which veer from beautiful to terrifying, were created by the company’s image recognition neural network, which has been “taught” to identify features such as buildings, animals and objects in photographs.

They were created by feeding a picture into the network, asking it to recognise a feature of it, and modify the picture to emphasise the feature it recognises. That modified picture is then fed back into the network, which is again tasked to recognise features and emphasise them, and so on. Eventually, the feedback loop modifies the picture beyond all recognition."

Read the full article and see the project here.

'Creating video ads on the iPhone: fad or future?' by Jefferson Graham in USA Today

"Film directors and advertising producers are starting to use Apple's popular iPhone to shoot movies, TV shows and commercial advertisements.

The recent Sundance festival film entry Tangerine was shot entirely on an iPhone, as was an episode of TV's Modern Family.

Now comes a new ad for Bentley cars, shot entirely on an iPhone, as well as online spots for Frye Boots and champagne maker Veuve Clicquot."

' 'Instagram Guru' Pete Halvorsen on Online Communities and Photography' by Bibbi Abruzzini in Huffington Post

"In a culture immersed in technology, Instagram is reviving adventure, face to face community and real relationships. How can something so digital actually get people out from behind their devices into the analog world?" 

"This is the question explored in the documentary 'Instagram Is' by filmmaker Paul Tellefsen, a project which birthed out of the desire to see genuine, authentic community, expression and relationship on Instagram. To the rhythm of quick snapshots, this social network tribe has changed the way people represent their lives and connect with each other. But how can aspiring photographers make the best use of Instagram and in what ways can online communities bring about social change? I interviewed Pete Halvorsen, a commercial and travel photographer based out of the Los Angeles coastal town of Manhattan Beach with one of the top Instagram accounts out there, to get some answers."

Read the full article and watch the preview here.

'A Flattering Biographical Video as the Last Exhibit for the Defense' by STEPHANIE CLIFFORD in The New York Times

Photo by: Jim Wilson

Photo by: Jim Wilson

"GILROY, Calif. — About 3,000 miles from New York, members of a camera crew gathered around Anthony Quijada, trying to do for their not-famous, not-rich client what some high-priced lawyers are doing for theirs in New York courts: Make a video that can keep him out of prison.

Lawyers are beginning to submit biographical videos when their clients are sentenced, and proponents say they could transform the process. Defendants and their lawyers already are able to address the court before a sentence is imposed, but the videos are adding a new dimension to the punishment phase of a prosecution."

Read the full article here.

'New on Snapchat, Music Videos' by BEN SISARIO in The New York Times

Photo by: Sam Comen

Photo by: Sam Comen

"Over the last year, Josh Legg, an electronic musician who performs under the name Goldroom, has noticed a change in how his fans interact with him online. More have turned from Twitter to Snapchat, the mobile app on which short messages digitally self-destruct after a few seconds.

“It immediately transforms the conversation into something that’s much more intimate and appealing for both sides,” said Mr. Legg, 31. “Anything they say, they don’t have to worry about it going out to the public — and neither do I.”

This week, in a further embrace of the platform, Goldroom will release four music videos on Snapchat, made with the company’s involvement and shot in a way that takes advantage of how people hold their phones. Unlike virtually all music videos, TV shows and films, Goldroom’s videos will be in vertical, or “portrait,” format."

Read the full article here.

'How Smartphone Startup Light Plans to Replace High-End Cameras' by Ina Fried in recode

"From a small space in Palo Alto, Calif., startup Light is looking to turn the camera industry on its head.

Smartphones have already decimated the market for compact, point-and-shoot cameras. Now, Light says it has a plan for the smartphone to replace high-end cameras too.

The company has been working for the last couple of years on an array of small cameras, each with a different focal length, taken in aggregate, that can mimic the zoom and high resolution of a larger camera without the unsightly bulge of a traditional zoom lens. It also sees a role for such arrays inside security cameras and other small devices."

Read the full article here.

'Introducing: the Tel Aviv Cafe Crafted for Your Social Media Experience' by Ashley Ramnarain in Shalom Life

"One Tel Aviv Cafe may have just saved thousands of Instagrammers the trouble of attempting to snap that picture-perfect meal. 

Catit - one of Israel’s most popular eateries - has taken it upon themselves to create special plates that allow visitors to take quality pictures of their food, before they eat them. The project, dubbed “Foodography,” is aimed at a “new generation of consumers” or “youngsters who experience food through the lens of a smart phone”."

Click here to read the full article.