Rajala Ambassador 2017.1

Jan Viljanen - Rajala Ambassador 2017.1

???? iPhone 7 + Afterlight
I heard I made the cut for Rajala Ambassador competition right before my trip to Puerto Rico. I read the first tasks from my email on Saturday morning before heading to the Old Town of San Juan. The first task was to take a self portrait. The colorful buildings of San Juan provided plenty of nice backdrops for the photo. Once I saw this wall I spontaneously decided to take a selfie with my phone what I don’t do very often. I jumped between the palm tree bushes and reached my hands as far as I could to get some leaves to frame the photo. Then I just waited for good light and snapped the pic.

Jan Viljanen - Rajala Ambassador 2017.1

???? Mavic Pro + Afterlight
During my trip to Puerto Rico I’ve seen and captured a lot of beautiful nature on the ground, at sea and up in the air. Choosing the best nature photo was hard and I wanted to wait until the end of the trip to make the decision. This photo was taken the very last day of the trip when we ended up in Puerto Nuevo beach which turned out to be very picturesque and nice place. I flew the drone along the shoreline and looked for the perfect cliff where the waves hit hard.

Jan Viljanen - Rajala Ambassador 2017.1

???? LUMIX FZ300 + Afterlight
While discovering the Old Town of San Juan we also visited the fort of El Morro. El Morro means the highest spot or the hill where the fort has been constructed. The grass field surrounding the fort is a popular picnik area windy enough for flying a kite. I followed the grandmother and grandchild fly the kite in 4K Photo mode with 30 frames per second and chose this moment as the best one.

More of my photos from Puerto Rico: instagram.com/jstvsl
Competition page: ambassador.fi

#366seconds2016

Last year I recorded one second of 4K video every day. I also shared one frame from every second on Instagram @JSTVSL
Here is my whole year in 366 seconds.

At times my project felt neverending and demanding yet highly rewarding. Even though I wanted to keep things simple, the selecting and editing of photos took a lot of time daily besides the shooting. Every video has been shot with the LUMIX FZ300 camera and frame selected and saved in camera. The photos have been transferred with WiFi to an iPad mini and most of them have been edited with Afterlight app.

I started to edit the final video in December by importing the files already shot and numbered to the timeline. Without the organized archiving I would have had to search for the right files for a long time. I’m glad I had already copied the right videos and photos to a separate folder which helped find the right moments from the videos.

In the beginning of the project I wrote about tips on starting a 366 or 365 photo project. Now that my project is over I feel reliefed but I still want to encourage others to document their year. During the year I learned a lot about videography and forced myself to come up with creative ideas to shoot even on the boring days.

My next big project will be a Finnish vlog on YouTube.

Mobile editing in Afterlight

Do you spend hours editing your Instagram photos in Lightroom or Photoshop? Would you rather spend the time doing something fun?

I edit most of my Instagram photos with my iPad mini which is small enough to carry around and yet really powerful. There are hundreds of good photo apps out there and even Adobe has some good mobile versions of their popular software. My project #366seconds2016 has made me post new photos daily and that’s why I like to keep the editing simple so that I’d also have time for something else. I’m shooting the project with my LUMIX FZ300 in 4K Photo mode and after I’ve selected the frame of the day in camera I transfer the file to my tablet with Wi-Fi and open my favorite app for mobile editing called Afterlight.

My tips for editing photos in Afterlight

Before-After comparison of a 4K photo shot with LUMIX FZ300 and edited in Afterlight
Start by choosing the filter for your photo. There is a lot of choice but you’ll quickly find your favorites.

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After you’ve found the best filter, move the slider to adjust the effect. Don’t go too crazy with the filter. Less is usually more.

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Now it’s time to adjust the photo with the extensive set of tools. Remember you don’t have to use every tool for a good result.

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Clarify tool makes your photo pop but if you use it too much you’ll end up with some HDR vomit.

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If your image looks dark, add some brightness. Simple.

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More contrast makes your photo look fresh and more dramatic.

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Slightly add some saturation if you want your photo to be more colorful.

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Increasing exposure brings up both the highlights and shadows.

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You can bring down the highlights to balance the overexposed parts.

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Show some detail from the darker areas by bringing up the shadows.

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Separately adjust the highlight, mid and shadow tones of the photo.

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You can adjust all the Red, Green and Blue channels to balance the photo.

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Move the slider from side to side to see what color your photo needs.

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Correct the white balance or add some mood with temperature.

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If you’re photo is blurry there’s not much to be done but every photo can use a tad of sharpening.

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Darkening the edges of the photo brings attention to the subject in the center.

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Crop the photo to an Instagram square or whatever. You might also want to save the edited photo before cropping.

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If you’re dealing with a bigger file you can save it in different sizes but always first save the biggest size.

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Hope you find my tips useful! Here’s the final photo on Instagram @jstvsl