Until very recently, AR filters from social media were the exclusive domain of platform developers. However, recently, platforms have been releasing toolkits allowing individuals to create their own filters.
For many, this was a fun way to flex their creative muscles in augmented reality. However, for others, it is opening up a cottage industry.
Here, we’ll introduce you to CREATORS AR, a new platform helping independent creators find work creating custom augmented reality filters.
A Brief Introduction to AR Filters
Before we talk about creating filters, for profit or for fun, let’s talk briefly about AR filters themselves. We’ll also talk about why they’re so important to the XR community, regardless of whether you personally use or make them.
AR filters, also called “lenses”, are features commonly offered by social media platforms, particularly Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram. The features allow users to capture images through their cameras that include augmented reality artefacts.
Most of these filters are just for fun. However, many of them are used to promote or sell various products.
Between their applications in retail and their incorporation into popular apps, AR filters are how many people experience AR for the first time.
The Dawn of User-Generated AR Filters
The first AR filters in social media apps started to pop up around 2015. As AR technology has become easier to use, it has only become more popular. There are also more and more people that are able to make these filters themselves.
Recently, tools like DeepAR have made it easier than ever to create AR filters that are both simple and complex.
With that, let’s get into CREATORS AR.
Introducing CREATORS AR
CREATORS AR is a new platform claiming to be the first-ever online marketplace for custom Instagram filters. The platform is a project by LEADERS, an Israeli marketing agency that works with social media influencers.
“With a huge demand for unique creator-generated content, the only available option is to find and approach the creators manually. CREATORS AR enables us to actually communicate with the people creating the most viral content on the internet,” LEADERS CEO Eran Nizri said in a recent press release. “LEADERS understands that one of the most viral trends lately is coming through the work of talented and skilled artists, called creators, using augmented reality and real-time visual effects to design IG-filters that spark conversation and engagements.”
The platform is currently marketed to marketers, event planners, influencers and gamers. Organizations interested in using the platform can pick from a number of basic filters or sign up to have a one-of-a-kind filter created for them by creators on the platform. Right now, those basic filters range from $25 to $700.
How to Become Involved
LEADERS started out the platform with a group of AR filter creators that they were already aware of and working with. However, AR filter creators can apply to join the site’s creative community. The only fees that they have to pay to post their work on the site are the withdrawal fees involved in digital payments with platforms like PayPal.
Right now, the platform only works with Spark AR, the engine used by Facebook and Instagram.
Why You Should Care
To recap: Organizations have access to a platform to get custom AR filters. Independent filter creators have a platform to sell their content to organizations. Social media users can expect a more rich landscape of AR experiences through two of the “big three” social media platforms.
If there’s anyone in the XR space not in one of the above groups, you can still look forward to more and more future XR users being introduced to AR for the first time through these experiences.