Greg Lutze, Co-Founder of VSCO

Illustration by  Jeffrey Phillips

Illustration by Jeffrey Phillips


Greg Lutze is the co-founder and Chief Creative Officer of VSCO, a community for expression. VSCO has been named Apple’s “App of the Year,” Google Play’s “Best Apps of 2015” and Fast Company’s “Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Social Media.” Before co-founding VSCO, Lutze worked as Creative Director for various agencies, with work being recognized by The Grammy Awards, Taschen, Communication Arts, Print Magazine and Graphic Design USA.

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Seeing Things: A Kid's Guide to Looking at Photographs,
by Joel Meyerowitz

"As a father of three young kids, I’ve come to terms that life is all about perspective. Is that Sharpie marker on the wall an act of toddler defiance, or vibrant creative expression? Are those Cheerios in my bed an uncomfortable nuisance, or a crumbling reminder of storybooks, snacks and snuggles? It’s all how you choose to look at it. 

Joel Meyerowitz’s book Seeing Things — A Kid’s Guide to Looking at Photographs is an exercise in perspective, an introduction for kids on how to find meaning in ordinary moments. Referencing renown photographers including Mary Ellen Mark and Walker Evans, Meyerowitz walks young readers through basic concepts such as composition and the interaction of light and shadows. Seeing Things is a fantastic foundation for helping children discover magical moments all around them through the power of photography."


Grays the Mountain Sends,
by Bryan Schutmaat

"I first met Bryan Schutmaat in the early 2000s, at the advent of the social media age. Bryan and I were part of a small photography collective, inspired by masters like Garry Winogrand and Stephen Shore. We sought to document our surroundings in a manner more consistent with what we saw in worn books, than what we saw on computer screens.

Grays the Mountain Sends is a testament to Bryan’s relentless pursuit of capturing timeless images of America’s oft-forgotten people and lands. The images are captivating in their honesty, spellbinding in their sense of isolation and melancholy. Grays the Mountain Sends feels delightfully out-of-place in today’s popularity-driven photography, transporting the viewer into a haunting world of empty eyes and broken down towns."


A Beautiful Ghetto,
by Devin Allen

"Late one evening in April of 2015, I was scrolling through my VSCO feed when I came across a black and white photo of a masked man running, with an army of riot police advancing behind him. The image was striking in its composition, dystopian in its nature, and powerful in its urgency.

Photographed during the Baltimore uprising in response to Freddie Gray’s murder, A Beautiful Ghetto is Devin Allen’s documentation of his beloved city and the people who call it home. Devin’s images are raw and intensely personal, with access to people and places only a local could obtain. While A Beautiful Ghetto could easily be a book rooted in despair and anger, Devin uses his lens to humanize a polarizing situation, finding beauty and even joy during a dark time. The book succeeds as a celebration of the indomitable spirit of the people of Baltimore."


Modern Color,
by Fred Herzog

"Like many other new photographers, I was obsessed with color photography pioneer William Eggleston. I’d pour over Eggleston’s Los Alamos and Guide, as if it were gospel. It wasn’t until much later in my photography journey that my friend Jerad introduced me to Fred Herzog, a Canadian color photographer from the 1950s and 1960s. It is somewhat astonishing that Herzog is not mentioned in the same breath as the aforementioned Eggleston, though that’s likely due to marketing, and by no means due to the quality of his work. 

Herzog immigrated from Germany to Canada in 1950, and immediately went to task documenting Vancouver in a cinematic fashion — Modern Color acts as a vivid time capsule to midcentury life in the northern city. With Kodachrome as his film of choice, Herzog’s images are unabashedly vibrant and alive. At the risk of hyperbole, this book is essentially a perfect 10."