Helpful advice on software for, and general approach to, managing colour in your video.
Colour Correction comes before Colour Grading. This entry is about correction – head here to learn about grading.
Working with Scopes
In this video tutorial from Surfaced Studio, Tobias seeks to demystify Scopes, and how they, moreso than just your eyes, are used to “read” colour in image. Importantly, Tobias offer tips (in Premiere Pro, but which can be applied in any software) with a focus on the order in which to take on colour (my notes follow the video):
What to do:
- Colour Correction happens before Colour Grading
- Make each clip looks its best, individually
- Make the clips look consistent, collectively
How to do it, one tool at a time:
- Levels – highlights (Gain), mids (Gamma) and shadows (Lift)
- Waveform (Luma) – first look at the image in grayscale, to ensure it takes advantage of the full brightness/contrast range, from blacks to whites
- Parade (RGB) – the same grayscale range idea repeated, but this time in each individual colour channel
- Vector Scope (YUV) – together with the Parade scope, tells you where on the RGB spectrum the colours in your image are most distributed.
- Colour Corrector + White Balance – how to “drag” the colours of the image in the general direction you want (which, at this stage, is usually towards the most neutral, balanced point possible)
- Correcting Skin Tones – using the “skin tone line” in the vector scope
Still on that last point: I’m still on the hunt for other, more diverse, technical resources on correcting skin tones – especially non-Caucasian skin tones. In the meantime, I’ve collected some topical discussions of film’s troubled history with dark skin, and what modern DOPs are doing about it.