Face Distortion Effect for Fun and Art — Instagram Filter Review

Published on May 7, 2019 | Filter name: "Funny Mirrors"

Filter creator: Clay Weishaar (@wrld.space)

As I browse through the amazing Spark AR creator filters, I came across one that was so hilarious, that I just couldn't put the phone done. This Instagram filter is called "Funny Mirrors". It has a collection of 8 different mirror-like distortion effects. Some of those effects work only on the face, while others on a larger portion of the frame itself.

Remember those stores or pedestrian malls where artists can draw a cartoon version of you? Well, you can use these filter to create a hilarious cartoon-style version of yourself, or if you are with a friend, this IG face filter can work on two faces simultaneously.

There are plenty of effects to play with and they produce distinctive and unique results. Also, the distance from the face, do to the nature of the effect, also affects the result.

OK, this IG filter review will be full of crazy pictures. Some of the results you might find funny, entertaining and beautifully artistic, others might look horrid or ugly. It's kind of different than having a cartoon-style image than seeing real faces of people get distorted in such a weird way. This is why I was also thinking that this can be a great idea to pass some of those filters through a cartoon/comic style filter. This will help turn your pictures into a funny cartoon-style artwork like the one that is drawn by cartoon artists, kind of.

You can then use it as a profile icon for your Twitter, Instagram or other social network's profile image. I am great in drawing, and although I didn't take my time actually learning it, using these type of filters and combining filters, can allow me to come up with my own cool creative digital artworks.

Oh, although I didn't mention it yet, of course, you can use it in videos, whatever fits your goal best. This is one of the reasons why I keep repeating that I want to be able to apply multiple filters at once for more creative results. Maybe it's too computing intensive, I don't know, but I want it!

Here is the first example, showing how the filter works with two people in the frame. Each filter yields very different results.

face distortion effects using Instagram filter

This image was actually very hard for the face segmentation algorithm to work with. It was hard for it to pick up the two faces, maybe because they were so close together. Furthermore, because many of the optical distortion effects are done on the frame itself, one face effect can affect a nearby face. I know what you are thinking right now, the girl in the right side in the left image looks like the sister of Sméagol—right? (OMEGALUL incoming).

I actually don't see it as a negative thing at all, in fact, it produces some very interesting looking results and this is why it's so much fun experimenting with this filter.  I remember playing around with morphing and distortion effects quite a lot in 3D modeling software like 3D Studio Max and in Adobe Photoshop, that excitement of morphing images and 3D models is still here.

As Base Filter for My Other Digital Artworks

I wanted to prove my point about really wanting the option to apply multiple filters and what cool things we can achieve with it. In this filter I went the extra mile and applied different pre-made filters, play with them, until I come up with the results that I liked. I used different filters like Lomo art, grunge effect, color painting filters, vintage coloring, played with contrast, saturation, hue, etc.

Please click this image below to see a larger version of the digital artworks that I've created using both "Funny Mirrors" as a based filter for morphing the girls in the image and other image filters on top of it, combine them to come with interesting results.

Morphing with other image filters applied

The part that I liked is experimentation with colors, different brush widths, and sketch variations. The third one is my personal favorite one. All artistic digital process that combines an Instagram filter and other photo editing process outside what Instagram offers. I wish everything was in one tool, it would be easier, but each one of these tools is great in doing a specific thing.

Fun for Everyone!

For those of you who just want to enjoy distorting and morphing your friends, this filter offers plenty of options to do just that. Try the different filters by tapping on the screen, move your smartphone and rotate your face around until you get something that makes you laugh and share it with others.

Face distortion Instagram camera effect

although there are only 8 distortion effects available, you can achieve many different results, depending on the face shape, hairstyle, facial expressions, etc. You'll find out that you can play with this filter for a long time. I do find it more interesting as an artistic digital tool more than just a filter that can produce hilarious images. This is why I recommend everyone who is into digital art to experiment with it

Funny distorted faces using an Instagram camera effect

One thing to keep in mind is that the face image can be pixelized as the filter also enlarge parts of the image, depends on the filter being used. Because this is still digital image manipulation. Obviously, for the targeted audience, this isn't an issue and even for digital artists, as you can see, depends on the image processing you intend to do, sometimes it really doesn't matter. In fact, some of the stretchings even created fine lines that look great after applying some other filters on it.


OK, one last set of images I promise. It's just that there is so much I can do with this filter. If I had more spare time, I would have set down and combined this filter with other image manipulation filters. I might do this in the upcoming days and share it on Instagram. I can create so many cool things with this filter as the base that I could literally spend days and even weeks just creating with it.

Digitally distorted human faces using IG camera effect

I think that by now, you understand why this filter is so awe-inspiring and amazing. It's one of the most interesting filters I tried to date, artistically speaking. It encouraged me to add it to part of my digital design pipeline and see what type of results I can come up with. the more I experiment with it alongside other non-Instagram filters, the more I learned to appreciate it.

What can I say? I spent a lot of time on this review because I think that some of the advantages of this filter might go unnoticed. It's a filter that so many people can enjoy using both creatively and for pure entertainment purposes. It's definitely one of my favorite filters. I intend to use it more in the upcoming days and share some more digital artworks. 

This "Funny Mirrors" IG effect goes beyond a few laughs that's for sure. If you haven't tried it out yet, I recommend doing so. Special thanks for Clay Weishaar for making it and allow me to become more creative with it.

If you enjoy my review, please, don't forget to share it with others. This is the only way I can continue doing what I do and share my stories and art with you all, and of course, spread the word about Spark AR creator's amazing filters with the everyone—Thank you.

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Face Distortion Effect for Fun and Art