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Old February 10th, 2005, 08:10 AM   #1
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A little novice color correcting help?

Hi all,

I'm starting to edit quite a few interviews that we've done. Most of them were shot in a controlled environment indoors with our own lighting rigs. The one in particular I'm working with now was shot outdoors and with a Canon GL1 and a single CCD Pano.

I've been going through a bunch of the color correction FX in Vegas 5 but can't get these close. Can anyone offer any pointers? Here are two stills:

Pano: http://externalis.com/br/kkOtis.jpg
GL1: http://externalis.com/br/chOtis.jpg

Any pointers would be great!

Thanks,
Kevin
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Old February 10th, 2005, 08:27 AM   #2
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Old February 10th, 2005, 08:34 AM   #3
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Thanks.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 08:44 AM   #4
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meh. The picture looks a little too green for my liking. Try bumping the saturation a bit and try edging the corrector a bit to the green if that's to your liking. Personally, I like a bit more reds in my picture to accent the face.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 12:02 PM   #5
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Edward, what tools did you suggest be used here? I'm working on an interview that was shot with 3 different cameras, a GL2, a newer consumer Panasonic 3CCD and an older 1 chip. I can get the colors pretty close on the GL2 and the Panny using Color Corrector and Color Curves, but I'm having trouble getting the older JVC 1 chip to match.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 12:22 PM   #6
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If you had known in advance, you could have shot a color chart with both cameras for reference.

In any case, when I have to match two cameras, I usually take a similar frame grab and open it in Photoshop. Using the tools there to look at the color components in different common areas of the frame. Look at the values in something that is "white" and something that is "black" and some common feature, the same point on someones face, or something static in the background, for instance. You'll be able to see that overall one camera has too much blue, green, whatever. If one cam is more saturated, you usually have to eyeball that.

A little trickier is matching gamma and contrast. You'll want to pull up Levels in Photoshop and look at a histogram of each of the images to see the spread of lights to darks, and where there are peaks in between. You can adjust the top and the bottom to match, and if the peaks still don't match, you probably have to adjust the gamma as well.

The one thing that can not be fixed is edge enhancement/sharpening that has been done. If one camera is overly sharp, it's tough to undo that. In extreme situations, you might give that a slight blur, and a slight sharpening on the other source, try to get them to meet in the middle.

Best thing to do is to test in advance, shoot a color chart, get those manual picture adjustment settings so the cameras are very close, manually white balance against the same card under the same light.
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Old February 10th, 2005, 12:55 PM   #7
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<<<-- Originally posted by Kelvin Kelm : Edward, what tools did you suggest be used here? -->>>

In the example I sent back to him, I did the following:

1) Applied Color Corrector - and then essentially did a "white
balance" on both clips.

2) Applied Color Curves - to fine tune the colorings to match better.

3) Applied the Secondary Color Corrector - used that to help pop the greens in the grass

I'm sure a better job can be done and only spent a few minutes on it and did NOT look at it on an external monitor.
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Old February 12th, 2005, 10:45 AM   #8
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Edward...

I don't suppose you can expand on the "white balance" method that you used. It turns out that half of my indoor interviews don't seem to match up on white. It wont happen in the future as I have since added that into our routine.

These were our first attempts at interviews. Anyhow, one camera is properly white balanced and the other isn't. How would I go about manually white balancing using the color corrector?

Thanks,
Kevin
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Old February 12th, 2005, 11:15 AM   #9
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Add the Color Corrector effect and then do the following:

On the "High" section, click on the "Choose Complimentary Color" eye dropper, and then highlight a small section that is supposed to be white.

On the "Low" section, click on the "Choose Complimentary Color" eye dropper, and then highlight a small section that is supposed to be black.

On the "Mid" section, click on the "Choose Complimentary Color" eye dropper, and then highlight a small section that is supposed to be gray.
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Old February 12th, 2005, 11:49 AM   #10
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Spectacular. Thank you once again.

So... for the future, If I do a color chart first I can use it to help in post white balancing, right. I ask because there are no greys in some of what I have but just doing the black and white has improved the look tremendously.

If I start all future multi camera interviews with a greyscale chart, I should be able to get to a common ground between the camera's white levels?

Thanks,
Kevin
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Old February 12th, 2005, 04:02 PM   #11
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It is ALWAYS best to have the cameras properly white balanced. While this procedure can help, it is best to start with video that is properly shot.
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Old February 12th, 2005, 06:55 PM   #12
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Okay... I got that loud and clear.

One place where it's been difficult is when we're doing live music shoots. From what I understand the white balance is supposed to be based on where the subjects are going to be.

So in the case of live shots outdoors, sometime's we're quite far away with some of the cameras so even zooming in full would require a quite large whiteboard to balance from.

Can we use digital zoom for the purposes of white balancing or will this be problematic.

Also, for these outdoor shows, the natural light obviously changes throughout the day and into the night. How often (if at all) should we be recalibrating for white?

-Kevin
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Old February 12th, 2005, 08:23 PM   #13
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I would not use digial zoom for anything. And I understand it's not always possible to properly white balance. This technique will, generally, get you started in the right direction. Then you can fine-tune from there.
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Old February 12th, 2005, 11:32 PM   #14
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Hi Kevin,
I took my own crack at matching your images.

http://www.glennchan.info/matching/matching.htm
It has all the steps I took with roll-over images showing before/after. You can also download the original .veg file and the two JPEGs I played around with.

Basically, I did what Edward did plus adding a soft focus effect to combat the excessive edge sharpening. You might want to download the original veg and see how it looks on a TV... because it's very different and frustrating looking at the image on a computer screen. When you see the thing in its full glory resolution, the two images look more different and are harder to match because the Panny 1 chipper just doesn't have that much resolution. It also has some extra noise, which the soft focus effect helps mask.

2- (directed to Kevin) Copyright/permission:
May I use those two images for educational/tutorial purposes?
May I use those two images for demo reel/demonstration purposes? They might just be useful to me to demonstrate whatever color correction abilities I have to other people.

If you would like a credit on the webpage I could do that too.
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Old February 14th, 2005, 06:25 AM   #15
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Excellent comparison Glenn! Thanks for that.
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