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Old March 14th, 2014, 11:31 AM   #1
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Color Correcting Advice Needed

I am fairly new to video production and for the most part, I white balance everything pretty well but I'm interested to see what color correcting in post could do for me. I don't think I have a huge need for it, but I really would like to learn how to do it a little to enhance my videos.

I currently edit on FCPX and I know how to go in and add color correcting that comes with FCPX (like the themes) and I know how to go in and do it manually, but I don't think I'm doing any of it correctly.

Does anyone know of any tutorials or have and advice on how to color correct more effectively?
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Old March 14th, 2014, 12:12 PM   #2
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

This is a reasonable place to start.

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Old March 14th, 2014, 12:31 PM   #3
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

All I ever needed was a bride getting ready in a room with a mix of sunlight and floruscents and I learned some basic color correction. Even just a basic fix of skin tone, if you like your settings in camera, will do you favors and not take too long. I do almost all of my correction in my editing software (Sony Vegas for me).

I did just ger DaVinci Resolve to tackle a blown out shot of a first look, though. Wow. That sucker has a massive learning curve but is powerful.
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Old March 14th, 2014, 01:00 PM   #4
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

Color Correcting is something I've really just gotten into myself in recent weeks.

I shoot with several different guys and we all have different cameras (Sony NX5 - FS100, Canon XF300 - XA20 - HV40, Nikon, Go Pro etc)

Earlier this week I ordered a DSC Labs One Shot chart from B&H and just got it yesterday evening via UPS. It provides a "true" or "standard" set of colors that conforms to HD standards... so when you shoot it you can ensure you have accurate colors in post production when you color correct.

I got it primarily to help match all these different cameras we use and am hoping to get things much more consistent.

Setting a custom white balance in the field and then having this in the shot initially should go a long ways to making everything look its best.

I've got a lot to learn though. lol

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Old March 14th, 2014, 02:53 PM   #5
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brock Burwell View Post
I am fairly new to video production and for the most part...
The place to start is Van Hurkman's Color Correction Handbook. Best technical book on any subject that I've ever found. 4/4 stars.
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Old March 15th, 2014, 01:10 AM   #6
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

Here is a free tutorial, actually part of a series, using FCPX: Free Final Cut Pro X Grading Tutorials

Besides color correcting he goes into "look building" and uses a step-by-step procedure.
Shadows, Midtones, highlights, exposure, skintones, waveform, RGB parade, histogram vectorscope, Color grading, Dynamic Range or Contrast, etc.

There is so much to learn.

Last edited by John Nantz; March 15th, 2014 at 11:14 AM. Reason: Spelling: ContraCt > ContraSt
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Old March 15th, 2014, 08:29 AM   #7
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

Yes. I think it is important to know there are two main parts: Primary color correction and Secondary color correction.

Primary color correction is where you make the colors look "correct". Whites are white, greys are grey and skins tones are proper. Basically, make the scene in balance and to your needs, how things look in real life.

Secondary color correction (aka Grading) is where you stylize your images to fit a look or need. This is where you might add a vingette, push the scene cool or warm, or just bring out a certain area that you want noticed.

Bottom line, to do any of this stuff you need a calibrated monitor you can trust. Otherwise, the decisions you make might not line up with the rest of the world.
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Old March 17th, 2014, 08:26 AM   #8
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Nantz View Post
Here is a free tutorial, actually part of a series, using FCPX: Free Final Cut Pro X Grading Tutorials

Besides color correcting he goes into "look building" and uses a step-by-step procedure.
Shadows, Midtones, highlights, exposure, skintones, waveform, RGB parade, histogram vectorscope, Color grading, Dynamic Range or Contrast, etc.

There is so much to learn.
I haven't had a chance to look at the other links listed here yet, but the Color Grading Central website is amazing! I went through all of his tutorials and am completely blown away by the difference color grading makes in my video (and this is just in FCPX). I thought I was done with a video this weekend and then I watched those tutorials and tried them on my videos and it made my video look wayy better. Unreal.

I can't even imagine what something like Divinci Resolve can do. I own it, but I haven't watched any tutorials yet. I keep hearing there is a big learning curve so it's kinda scared me from working with it.

Thanks!
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Old March 17th, 2014, 11:14 PM   #9
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

I have had a couple of goes with DaVinci Resolve (Lite) and found not as scary as I though it might be. I used it for just primary colour work, but found the improvement to be considerable. I used this tutorial:


It has a bit of stupid guff at the start re FB, but gets into a very good overview of the processes of using resolve. I found it not too basic to be boring and not too challenging to be daunting. You certainly see the difference it makes to his footage.
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Old March 18th, 2014, 11:05 AM   #10
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Re: Color Correcting Advice Needed

I just browsed BM's site and looked at the side-by-side comparison between the different Davinci products, and it looks like the average person would have plenty of tools to work with, with free version. I'm going to download it and check it out!
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