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'Video on Instagram' Steps Up to Match Vine But Can Any of These Apps Produce 'Art'?

06.25.13 @ 9:00AM Tags : , , , , , , ,

Video thumbnail for vimeo video 'Video on Instagram' - nofilmschoolThis doesn’t have to be confusing, so let’s briefly recap: various apps and services have quested to achieve the status of being the ‘Instagram of Video.’ Instagram, of course, is known for essentially being the ‘Twitter of Photography.’ Twitter itself has stepped up as a favored contender in this quest with its 6-second-maximum micro-video service Vine. Now, Instagram itself is offering ‘Video on Instagram,’ which allows up to 15 seconds maximum micro-videos. All of which is — well, good — and hopefully fun, but how viable are these apps for the creation of artistic content?

Aside from it’s nine additional seconds — and of course, inclusion of its trademark filters — Video on Instagram doesn’t seem too different from its “cousin,” Vine:


Now, 6 and 15-second caps make Vine and Instagram video essentially unviable for filmmaking in any traditional sense, but each format may offer its own creative storytelling solutions, however silly. As such, it would be almost shameful to not feature at least one story-arc from a particularly prodigious Vine-user, former Mad TV star Will Sasso.

Sasso is the proprietor of at least one self-made meme, involving projectile lemon-ing given various circumstances — the entirety of which is unabashedly silly and completely amazing given the many restrictions of Vine itself (not to mention popular enough to spawn a fan-made inversion/parody). Just to be safe, let’s call pretty much everything after this point NSFW:

The lemon thread, as hilarious as it is, only scratches the surface of Sasso’s usage of Vine. Enter “some badass dude named ‘Corey’” who, according to Sasso’s description, “took over my Vine account. He seems pretty badass. Let’s all be careful.” What ensues is meta-tastic and multi-directional self-reference to profound degrees, especially given the continuity Sasso creates with the character(s). That’s not even to mention the skill and patience it surely takes to perform in-camera edits so precisely and effectively. It’s — kind of post-modern, actually — for Vine, at the very least — and it’s definitely funny.

Another notable thing about this admittedly unexpected narrative is just that, how inexplicable it really is. It’s an open-ended, intermittent continuity, strewn among a number of other Vines created by Sasso (which themselves may represent iterations of other running gags.) No one is demanding “the continuation of the Corey story,” Sasso simply continues it pretty much whenever he feels like it. There’s also no telling where it will go, whether it’s finished as it appears here, or if it will continue unexpectedly on for the next five years. Perhaps most importantly, it somehow manages to tell an actual story within the Vine model, formatted as a back-and-forth Vine dialogue between multiple personalities of Sasso himself. And yes, it also does so in a hilarious fashion.

The Sasso/”Corey” narrative may seem like a strange case study to present here, but his work isn’t the only Vine content worth seeing. There’s always stuff like this, which is kind of generally eye-catching, elegant, and interesting to watch (and watch again, and watch again):

Which probably informed my own attempt at the ‘pseudo-stop motion/time-lapse Vine,’ seen below:

As for the question of which service, Video on Instagram or Vine, will earn greater success, I once more turn to Will Sasso, who also ‘re-Vine’d’ his first attempt at the newer service, which might just be too long for some gags:

What other types of stories can you foresee being told through these art forms? Do you see the restrictions in length as a major handicap, or freeing you to approach things in a completely new way?

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