Instagram Sensation Connor Franta, With 4 Million Followers, Shows His Mobile Editing Workflow

Photo editing is something that is completely subjective and depends on the personal preference of the editor. Pretty much everyone knows this, but despite this fact, people are always interested in how popular photographers get their final results. In this video, we not only get to see how Conner Franta goes about taking his images, but we also get to see which apps he uses to achieve the final result. 

In the video, Franta talks about some of the techniques he uses in order to capture an image. Because he likes to use his iPhone, “which is slightly limited,” Franta suggests getting creative by getting low, close, or abstract. When looking for what images to take, he looks for either depth, symmetry, color, or contrast.

After the image is complete, Franta relies on four apps for the majority of his post-processing. The heavy hitter in this is VSCO Cam. Franta uses this app for pretty much the majority of his editing and explains his favorite presets within the app. The next app on the list is Afterlight; this app is mostly used to adjust things such as highlights, grain, and midtowns. From here the image may go into Facetune in order to remove any unwanted objects such as power lines or street signs. The last app on the list is SKRWT, which is used to adjust perspective.

Do you have a mobile editing workflow? What are your favorite apps and what do you use them for?

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Tam Nguyen's picture

This kid's video made me wanna punch him thru my monitor.

geoffreybadner's picture

I actually punched my monitor around the 1:20 point.

Steffen lock Nilsen's picture

anger management class next stop?

geoffreybadner's picture

Identifying jokes class next stop?

Jason Vinson's picture

hope it's not an expensive monitor.

David Vaughn's picture

Jump cuts
JUMP cuts

jeremyslayterphotography's picture

Yeaaaa and why do I care as someone who takes photography seriously and has just an ounce of what I should be doing, care as to what this pop culture fool thinks is right?

Andrew Strother's picture

Because he takes good photos?

Percy Ortiz's picture

scrapping the bottom of the barrel for articles aren't we?

Jason Vinson's picture

Not everything can be award winning. Feel free to leave some suggestions on what you would like to see.

Percy Ortiz's picture

well this is fstoppers so how about something photography related? I'm not asking for award winning but at least something we as professional photographers or semi pro or at least serious about photography as a profession can be interested in. If i wanted amateur advice on how to instagram I'll visit youtube or just simply google it, surely I'd find ten million articles like this one or better.
On the other hand, if you would have focus on what does this mean for professional photographers like yourself, how much can your income benefit from more social media following, what does exactly 4 million followers translate into numbers and paying customers then the song would be different. I am yet to see verifiable proof of how social media success can make or break your photography business (or at least have a significant impact) oh and notice how i said "photography business" I have no doubt this kid is making money out of his instagram but i doubt any of it is photography related. Unless you know something i don't in which case maybe you should've put that on your article?

Sean Molin's picture

Not everything can apply to your specific subsect of photography. Fstoppers appeals to photo enthusiasts of ALL levels. Besides, there are several articles on here already about social media and Instagram for full-time pros.

Alain Mitchell's picture

Hey Jason I personally thought the post does have value. As a NY based professional fitness photoragper I understand the importance of getting your name out there, even if this kid is not a "professional photographer" there is still something to be learned from someone who has gained such a large following at a young age. If Percy would like I could write an article on how I got this months cover of Women's Running magazine from concept to print if that's more appealing to him. However, one thing I did learn from working in NY fashion and fitness for the last 5 years is if you are so concerned with Instagram celebrities and hating on other people's work you clearly have too much time on your hands and aren't working hard enough on your own craft .

Jason Vinson's picture


Cameron McKinlay's picture

real talk
how many of us here have 4 million followers? Kids can teach us a lot about whats trending and how to stay current in the ever changing world of social media. As a photographer/ artist, I never stop learning or growing. And this article made me realize that I need to start learning the method to instagramming success and in turn grow my business. Social media is free PR.

Cobus Basson's picture

Wow, I just signed up as member of fstoppers and I am what I would call an advanced amateur/hobbyist. I hardly got my teeth into it and the first thing I see is this type of comment! Are all so-called "professional photographers" like this? Arrogant, talking down at others, thinking themselves better than others that are not "professional" in their opinion? It's a sad day for photography if that is the case. The sad thing for professional photographers is that any person with a camera or a smartphone can take pictures and if they are good at it, there is no reason for them not to take work away from the so-called professionals. If professionals feel threatened by that then they are insecure and they need to look at themselves rather than to blame others.

Jason Vinson's picture

don't let trolls scare you off. The majority of us are very nice.

Cameron McKinlay's picture

Welcome to the jungle Cobus! Watch out for the wedding photogs...they tend to bite :)

Chadwick Gantes's picture

How easily we forget there are people on the other end of this article and that video that you just watched gentleman. I hope you encourage people in your daily life since you're not doing so on the internet. At least the author of this article and the author of the "guide to a perfect instagram" are in the arena attempting do something. They're out in the world trying, doing, authoring, testing, researching and presenting. Unfortunately, people like you who think they are critiquing when in all actuality are actually tearing down those "creating" therefore tearing down the discussion.

Claude Lee Sadik's picture

Thank you :)

Jason Vinson's picture

Rock on Chadwick!!

Nathan Nellans's picture


David Hynes's picture

Chad- 1
Percy- 0


Brandon Ericksen's picture

Mobile photography is doable, but I'd use a Camera FV-5 compatible phone (LG G4 would do) and Photomate R2, maybe some other apps for other effects. Not perfect, but will do in a pinch.

Jason Vinson's picture

Photomate looks interesting.

Steffen lock Nilsen's picture

Dear trolls. I smell you coming out to venture your opinion.

Do you have 4m followers on any social media?
From the little I know of the subject ill venture my uneducated opinion that this kid makes more money than you, and as such is a more successful photographer. so rain in your rage and go went somewhere else :)

good going to this kid for bout taking and sharing his thoughts and work posses, personally applaud anyone that can make a descent living doing what he/she loves.

Jennifer Kelley's picture

I'm sure Starbucks is paying him something LOL.

gabe s's picture

He doesn't need to come off as arrogant to do so.

Sébastien Bouvier's picture

Man that music at the end! Simple and efficient, definitely my favorite part of the video ;)

Zoli Tarnavölgyi's picture

the thing, he's doing is okay, nice. but the personality, the style...aaaahhhhh. so annoying. that's all

Jason Vinson's picture

It's definitely made to target a younger crowd.

Jennifer Kelley's picture

Now that I've actually seen the video, I'm going to agree. But I find a lot of teenagers super annoying too. He's definitely not targeting the mid 30's group for sure.

Jennifer Kelley's picture

I haven't watched the video yet, but I'm curious how he got so many followers. While I don't hate his IG, I honestly don't see anything terribly remarkable about it either. One of the accounts I follow is a fairly well known children/YA book author who has a really fun IG page and he only has a couple thousand followers.

Jason Vinson's picture

It's definitely interesting to see how some great accounts have a small following and some mediocre accounts have a massive following. It may have to do with the amount of time they spend interacting within the app or how long they have been using the service.

Mac MacDonald's picture

He is a published author as well. His memoir was on the best seller list. Yup, he has a memoir published....been on the planet 20-minutes and already has a books worth of stuff to talk about?!?!?! Good for him...bad for Earth.

Jason Vinson's picture

at least its titled "A Work in Progress"... but its has great reviews too, so cant be bad, right?

gabe s's picture

While I am jealous that somebody like this can get so many followers with some pretty boring photos, I would love to the look on his face if you ask him to set up a off camera flash system.

Manuel Yumar's picture

you can make all of this only with SNAPSEED, you can even edit RAW files... its not lightroom but for "on the go" it really works

Charles Gaudreault's picture

Pretty sure he his a popular youtuber with a real fan base that also follow him on instagram so i guess he is legit!

Jason Vinson's picture

he has a massive twitter and facebook page as well

Crystal Provencher's picture

One thing that people need to remember is that this individual is a social media celebrity and is speaking to their audience so that they can learn how to use photo apps and post better IG photos. Not so they can become professional photographers. I find that these individuals can also have some great tips about marketing themselves and how they layout their social media pages to attract viewers, followers and likes as they have so many others to try and differentiate themselves from in order to achieve that.

Christian Hartmann's picture

It feels like the "Connectivity Lost" post right after this one somehow relates to this.

jon snow's picture

Welcome to the future. I`d better get my technique updated and my teeth bleached......

Carl Rug's picture

Does the number of followers you have really say that someone is a good or a bad photographer? just saying......

Dave Bigbird's picture

My favorite apps are Snapseed and Poalrr.

Bill Peppas's picture

It really saddens me ( in a very selflessly way ) to see that 277k people liked this "photo"

Gave his "gallery" a quick view, there are a few interesting shots ( in terms of composition, subject ), but most of the photos are... "garbage" by a semi-pro or professional photographer's standards.

A photographer... he ain't.
A capable social media manager ? yes.

Art Sklut's picture

I prefer the Dan Bilzerian approach to building an IG following...guns and naked women. ;)

Jason Vinson's picture

hahaha that's always a valid option!

Prefers Film's picture

I found him in the dictionary, under "banal".

Andrew Strother's picture

I had not heard of this SKRWT thing. Seems worth checking out.