My fifty shades of Color grade.

Color Grade

Even the collocation “color correction” makes me shiver. It is my headache, my misery, my hopelessness. The paradox is that I can identify whether the color is good or not, but I do not know how to fix it. In theory everything sounds pretty easy. I have seen dozens of videos about color correction and was never able to improve my footage.

I watched a couple of video tutorials about three way color corrector, and was inspired by apparent simplicity of an effect. I have tried to use it, and as I expected before I have failed. Instead of changing the color three way color corrector gave me a chance to enjoy colorful stripes on the screen. My attempts to set input levels ended with this:


Sometimes restarting a program is enough to solve a problem, however not this time. As there is another way to do color correction, I kicked to the tab “color”. On the left side of the screen there is a “lumetri scopes” where we can see a Vectorscope YUV. It is very convenient to see the graph in addition to a still.



The main color of this clip is yellow. My mistake as a cameraperson was that I have forgotten to change the white balance after shooting on a street. To reduce yellow through color wheels I have changed the settings of shadows, midtones and highlights to blue and decreased temperature as well.  

After 1.png

As we can see, that was too much. To make it look more balanced I moved wheels closer to the center, but left it on a blue side.  This time a still looks as if it has a correct white balance while shooting.  

After 2.png


Before.pngbefore 1.pngBefore

What I did with the second clip was similar to the previous one.  The difference is that initially blue color was prevalent in lieu of yellow.  At first I have changed midtones to yellow, then I added red tones and increased temperature, but I was not satisfied with the color.

After 1.png

To make the picture look redder I used “tint” settings.  After that I have tried to find a suitable balance of blacks and whites.  I also made picture to seem more contrast.  

After 2.pngafter2.png

3.     Before.pngBefore


After 11.png


With this still apart from basic correction I made attempts to create a mood. I started exploring RGB curves. To make plants and a bin green, I use points on a hue saturation curve, but I have forgotten about one important detail – I did not apply mask for it. However, I have witnessed an unexpected result – picture did not turn into green, it obtained dull grey color instead. Thus, my color theory failed once again.

fail 1.png


I guess that my inability to make color correction in some way I inherited from my grandmother, who is color blind and cannot distinguish particular colors.  But I need to practice a lot, to understand who is responsible for my failures – my legacy or my passivity.


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