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The Art of Color Correction

double7
August 20, 2014
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The Art of Color Correction

On today’s high definition (HD) videocameras, much of what we capture is FLAT. What may look like an image devoid of dynamic color is actually layered with tons of digital data, allowing the most LATITUDE for color correction and enhancement in post-production. The manufacturers, scientists, and most importantly, filmmakers, behind the technology have opened the doors for more possibilities than ever before. Storytellers, however, must understand what’s happening inside the camera and use their pre-production time wisely to assure their images arrive where they’d like the in post.

The Double7 Squad recently shot a music video for Bronzon’s new single, “Take You For A Ride”. What follows are select screengrabs from the video and explanations as to how certain results were achieved and why.

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August 20, 2014
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  1. This proposal is for your confidential use only and may not be reproduced,
    sold, or redistributed without the prior approval of Double7 Images, LLC.
    THE ART OF
    COLOR
    CORRECTION
    !
    BRONZON
    “TAKE YOU FOR A RIDE”
    MUSIC VIDEO

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  2. 2
    THE ART OF COLOR CORRECTION
    *GEAR | SOFTWARE
    CAMERAS:
    EDITING:
    COLOR:
    On today’s high definition (HD) videocameras, much of what we capture is FLAT. What may look like an image devoid of
    dynamic color is actually layered with tons of digital data, allowing the most LATITUDE for color correction and
    enhancement in post-production. The manufacturers, scientists, and most importantly, filmmakers, behind the technology
    have opened the doors for more possibilities than ever before. Storytellers, however, must understand what’s happening
    inside the camera and use their pre-production time wisely to assure their images arrive where they’d like the in post.!
    !
    The Double7 Squad recently shot a music video for Bronzon’s new single, “Take You For A Ride”. What follows are select
    screengrabs from the video and explanations as to how certain results were achieved and why.
    PRODUCER / DIRECTOR / EDITOR:
    CINEMATOGRAPHER:
    COLORIST:
    *CREATIVE TEAM
    Pete Chatmon
    Dylan Verrechia
    Eric Alvarado
    RED Epic -X @ 5K (except for slo-mo) / GoPro Hero 3 @ 1080P
    Adobe Premiere CC 2014
    Da Vinci Resolve
    @double7 on Instagram

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  3. 3
    RESOLUTION & IMAGE CAPTURE
    !
    !
    The next wave saw manufacturers delivering 1080P
    (1920x1080) for a resolution very close to the 2K
    quality of film. Independent filmmakers applauded as
    tiny DSLRs carried this capability at a very low price
    point.!
    !
    It wasn’t long before 4K became an industry target,
    with manufacturers like RED and Arri leading the
    way. These cameras are capturing twice the amount of
    information than a typical theatrical screen can
    display, stretching the possibilities of post-production
    (reframing shots, color correction, greenscreening, etc). !
    !
    If 5K isn't enough, you can sleep comfortably knowing
    that RED has released a new upgrade, “Dragon”, now
    enabling the camera to capture in 6K. !
    !
    What’s next?
    High Definition begins at 720P (1080x720). The first HD cameras (Panasonic DVX100 & HVX200, Canon XL1, etc) were
    delivering image capture at this resolution. 720P is also the resolution at which most videos are streamed online
    (YouTube, Vimeo, etc).

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  4. The ORIGINAL IMAGE from the RED Epic.
    The COLOR CORRECTED version. !
    !
    Notice how much sharper the REDS
    pop and the heightening of the
    GREENS.!
    !
    We wanted give some warmth to the
    barbershop location while staying in
    line with the cooler feel (read: BLUE)
    that would ultimately be applied in
    other scenes.
    SCN 1 - INT. BARBERSHOP 4

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  5. Although BLUE would be important to
    the overall feel of the music video, this
    COLOR CORRECTED image of a wider
    shot in the barbershop that was timed
    for BLUE did not feel as good as the
    GREEN. !
    !
    Some rules are made to be broken and our
    decision would allow us to give this
    location a distinct feel within the video.
    Before moving on, we tried to play with
    YELLOW a bit, but found this to be the
    least dynamic of our options. !
    !
    It’s important to note how the color
    choices feel in different shots (wide,
    medium, MCU, CU, etc).
    SCN 1 - INT. BARBERSHOP 5

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  6. The ORIGINAL IMAGE from the RED Epic.
    A few of the directions we could have pushed the image. Each gives the video a uniquely different feel (not necessarily
    right or wrong). Color correction choices should be connected to the THEMES and REFERENCES agreed upon in prep.
    Strong GREEN
    Leaning BLUE
    Leaning YELLOW
    SCN 2 - EXT. RESERV
    A
    TION 6

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  7. As you move through the color correct, it’s important to locate the right timing for each of the different SCENES and
    SET-UPS within your project. Ideally, you can find a sweet spot that allows a certain level of color consistency
    (warmth, saturation, shadows, etc). If you’re looking to push the envelope and do something more unconventional,
    then by all means go to town with whatever you like, for whatever reasons you may have. Just have reasons!!
    !
    In this scene, unfortunately blown out by the sun (our 2-person skeleton crew could not set up flags or diffusion to
    control nature’s light), we were forced to find a middle ground as the white sky only allowed so much latitude. !
    !
    With BLUE as our motif, where possible, we pushed toward that side of the color wheel, while still working to
    separate Bronzon from the background.
    DESATURATED and FLAT Leaning BLUE Leaning ORANGE
    SCN 2 - EXT. RESERV
    A
    TION 7

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  8. Leaning BLUE Leaning ORANGE
    Once you identify the sweet spot, it becomes a lot easier to determine where your color corrected images should land.
    This song is about bringing the listener into the world of Bronzon as he reminisces about dramatic moments in his
    life that have shaped who he is as a person and artist. The ORANGE feel does not support that emotion as much as
    the BLUE does. !
    !
    It’s important to assess what every adjustment does to the ENTIRE IMAGE. How are shadows affected? Blacks? The
    details of the mise-en-scene? Though you may not be doing the color correction yourself (and we do NOT recommend
    you do), directors must train their eye to scan the entire frame for the pros and cons of each tweak.
    SCN 2 - EXT. RESERV
    A
    TION 8

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  9. We wouldn’t be thorough if we didn’t run a pass on our rooftop location leaning ORANGE. In the journey toward
    our final decisions, this made it very clear that there would be NO PLACE for this color in the video. Don’t be afraid
    to try something before ruling it out wholesale.
    SCN 3 - EXT. ROOFTOP 9

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  10. BLUE also allows us to retain more of the information in the sky, draw your eye to Bronzon, and keep the blacks
    from getting “crushed” altogether.
    SCN 4 / 5 - EXT. STREET / INT. CAR
    Leaning BLUE Leaning ORANGE
    10

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  11. The GoPro Hero 3 footage did not provide as much information as the RED Epic, but on a bright, sunny day it
    produces a beautiful image. Our goal was to do our best to match this footage with the rest of the music video by
    pushing for as much saturation as possible across our BLUES and any incidental colors like the ORANGE car.
    11
    SCN 6 - GOPRO HERO 3
    The COLOR CORRECTED IMAGE
    The ORIGINAL IMAGE from the GoPro Hero 3

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  12. THE DIRECTOR’S CUT
    Check out the final video to see how it all came together. https://vimeo.com/102582426!
    password: “bronzon”
    12

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  13. THE COLORIST’S REEL
    Eric Alvarado is a Senior Colorist at Prime Focus in NYC. Click above to check out his reel.
    13

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  14. COLOR CORRECTION APPLICA
    TIONS 14
    Adobe Speed Grade Da Vinci Resolve Apple Color Red Giant Magic Bullet Tiffen DFX Film Convert Film Emulation
    Colorists have their preferred programs for color correction. Depending on your post-production workflow, !
    one application may integrate more easily with your system than another. !
    !
    When budgets are tight, time is short, and you just can’t hire a professional, many of these programs offer !
    simple plug-ins to enhance your videos.!
    !
    Online communities such as lynda.com, Creative Cow, and Video Co-Pilot offer helpful tutorials to assist !
    you with these programs, in addition to any forums & support offered by each company.

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  15. LOG SETTINGS FOR HD CAMERAS 15
    Canon Cinema EOS Line
    Native ISO: 850
    Sony F55
    Native ISO: 1250
    Arri Alexa
    Native ISO: 800
    Red Epic-X
    Native ISO: 800
    HD videocameras are RATED differently as far as what the NATIVE ISO settings are to capture an image !
    that offers the most DYNAMIC RANGE and LATITUDE in post-production. !
    !
    Before your shoot, make sure you and your cinematographer have discussed !
    how to best exploit the camera’s technology to tell your story.

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  16. Our award-winning, multi-platform experience as storytellers separates us from the competition. Plus, we’re fun to work with.
    How do you raise $500K to produce a film that
    everyone loves, but no one wants to finance?
    That was the question posed by our first project
    “Premium”. We decided to write a check on
    our own account called “creative hustle”,
    designed proposals and newsletters, produced
    short films, commercials, and marketing videos,
    staged live events, and appealed to our
    community for support. Creativity collided with
    commerce as we identified our competitive
    edge — communicating to any audience.
    This is what we offer to you.
    PHILOSOPHY
    DOUBLE7 IMAGES
    Pete Chatmon
    Creative Director
    A camera is a camera until you put it in the
    hands of an artist. If you’re serious about your
    brand, you value the experience and
    e x e c u t i o n o f e x p e r t s . O u r c re a t i v e
    collaboration ensures that by the time we
    grab our tools, the blueprint of your story has
    been designed to engage your audience in
    the most entertaining and effective way
    possible.
    You keep doing what you’ve done to get to
    this point. We’ll be your partner in the journey
    to the next level.
    MISSION SERVICES
    ✴ PREMIUM VIDEO CONTENT
    ✴ SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGNS
    ✴ STORYTELLING STRATEGIES
    Putting Story First is our promise.
    Tell us who you are and we’ll tell the tale.
    To create compelling content of the highest
    quality at the most affordable price.
    The Double7 Squad
    Creative Collective
    CLIENTS
    16

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  17. [email protected] | d7i.co | 973.420.7294
    Studio Address!
    Double7 Images c/o Bravo Studios!
    40 West 27th Street, 2nd Floor!
    New York, NY 10001 USA
    Mailing Address!
    Double7 Images!
    300 Communipaw Avenue, Suite 162!
    Jersey City, NJ 07304 USA
    * * *
    We want to make awesome
    videos for you and share
    them with the world.

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