If you haven’t heard of YouTube sensation Antti Kalhola, then you will have by the end of this interview.
The Finn is a sensation in motorsport videomaking. Singlehandedly, he’s produced almost 40 motorsport clips on his channel, which numbers over 4,000 subscribers and almost one million video views in just a few short years.
Motorsport – Love for Life
His skill is in capturing the essence of motorsport through beautiful footage, soundtracks and narration.
And it’s not just F1 in his radar. His love extends to motorcycle racing, rallying, touring cars and endurance epics like the Paris-Dakar.
You could spend a good few hours exploring the incredible wealth of videos he’s put together, and our new correspondent, Wojtek Paprota, spoke exclusively with him…
Firstly, the most important question in my opinion: how it is that every single movie you make is just amazing and adorable, at least for me?
Thank you very much if you think so. Well, obviously I put a lot of effort into every video I make. I spend many hours on each video and try to do each part of the process as well as I can. Making videos is an important part of my life and a part of who I am.
What do you think about your movies?
Funnily enough, I don’t like all of them when I watch them now. There are videos that if I watch them now, I think to myself ‘Why did I decide to do it that way?’ and so forth. But of course there are also videos I still like to watch afterwards. But in general I rarely watch my own videos myself, sometimes but it’s not often. I prefer to watch new stuff and have inspirations from there.
How did you start your “movie-creator” career?
It started quite accidentally. In April 2005 when I was 14, I found a Windows Movie Maker program on my computer. I had heard about the program, but never used it. So out of interest I opened the program and had a look around. I imported a rally video to the program, and a song. Then I started to edit the footage on to the music and I was instantly hooked.
My first videos were very simple obviously compared to the videos I have done lately, but the basic elements were the same already. During my first year of video editing I did a huge amount of videos, basically one a week. I guess that time was the backbone for my video making and it has grown from there. I do less videos nowadays than back then, but in contrast I put a lot more effort into each video I make.
Why you make movies? Do you have any aim you want to achieve?
I guess the most important thing why I make videos is that I enjoy making them. And as long as I enjoy making them, there is a chance that some people will enjoy watching them as well. I don’t know about aims, but it always makes me happy if I have managed to inspire someone or brighten up their day for a few minutes.
‘Grand Prix – The Golden Era’
What does inspire you?
Inspiration can come from very different things. It can be an inspiring moment in motorsport history or something completely unrelated to motorsport, like a moment in a movie, video game or a song or whatever. Or just an inner desire to tell certain kind of a story. It is hard to tell sometimes where our inspirations really come from. During the making of the video I’m inspired if I manage to make a certain part look very good for myself, it gives me special energy and inspiration.
Are there any special schemes, you try to stick to in your movies?
I guess many of my videos has a happy or inspiring ending to some degree, and some hardships on the way. I try to include different emotions to every video. But it’s not my goal for all of my videos to have the same basic gore elements.
How much time takes you making one movie? Is it a hard work? What is the most difficult part and why?
It’s totally dependent of the video I’m making. But the most time consuming part is always going through the footage and finding the right clips to use for the video. The actual editing is done quickly compared to that. The most difficult part for myself is to find suitable songs, and especially to find new good songs that I have never used.
How do you choose the soundtrack to your movies, as it is really important part of all of them?
I choose the soundtrack according to what kind of emotions I am searching for the particular part of the video. Quite often the good songs come to me by accident without searching. Often when I have to try to search for songs I find myself in trouble and not finding anything suitable. Sometimes when I find an inspiring song to use, it inspires my thinking of the whole video and it gives me new ideas for it. So it doesn’t always happen the way, that I have the video planned and then I just search for the songs for it. Sometimes it can be other way around.
‘Ayrton Senna – Lap of Life’
Which movie you are the most proud of?
Hard to give you an absolute favorite, but I can name you a few. Over two years ago I made a long 45-minute tribute to Ayrton Senna. As a project it’s the most memorable one for me as it obviously took a lot more time to make than usual. The same year later I made videos called Motorsport – Every Second Counts and Countdown To Victory. I’m happy about those two as well. And of the videos I have done lately I especially like Senna – Lap of Life. But there are so many videos I have made over the years that it is impossible for me to give an absolute favorite.
You are young, but do you think about become a full-time movie creator and treat it as your job?
Yes, it is my goal to earn my living by making motorsport videos and documentaries, to be able to develop my skills and do different interesting projects while earning my living off it, it’s a dream.
To subscribe to Antti’s YouTube channel, click here.
Our thanks to Wojtek for sharing this interview, which first appeared on his F1 Ultra website.