The EVIL codec!
The most damaging element is the H.264 compression. Have you ever watched Insomnia on Netflix? Al Pacino has Orange skin...
...Shot on film by... masters
watched on netflix... orange skin. wtf?
The conversion to the netflix compression was probably run through a stock compression setting. That is how the H.264 compression is working on the dslr. It is the honey badger*... it doesn't care how carefully you have crafted your colors. It will apply its own interpretation of the image data and convert it to an .MOV file.
Carefully design your picture style to counteract whatever you don't like in your video footage, not just the RAW image.
There are some issues with Canon imaging too. Canon definitely has a Red emphasis in their color rendering. In every picture style Blue and Green are odd, Red clips early. Landscape is the most different, but cartoony skin tones and over saturated blue and green. Faithful makes everything look tea dyed.
*honey badger reference explained:
Mobius 1080P screen shot by onesielaff, on Flickr
Mobius 720P screen shot by onesielaff, on Flickr
Look at how much color change has happened in these two compression versions of the same footage. Taken from a high end HD camera.
Thread: Adventures in the PSE
Results 41 to 50 of 292
09-24-2011 02:56 PM
Last edited by James0b57; 11-26-2011 at 02:25 AM.
09-24-2011 04:52 PM
Skin tones will always be illusive and subject to many random elements, even when using film.
Last edited by James0b57; 11-21-2011 at 02:27 AM.
09-25-2011 11:40 AM
The Human Eye
It is said, that the human eye never takes a bad picture. Too bad such a true and profound saying doesn't go on to explain why. Maybe I will give it a go.
When we are born, we can't speak, but neither can we see. Yes, we can makes sounds and cry, as we still have a voice, and just the same we can still sense light with our eyes, but none of it has meaning. It is through experience that we learn to associate light with physical reality. As we mature we learn how to focus our eyes, and begin to make sense of shapes and patterns.
Our eyes are still the basis for almost all camera designs today: A lens focuses light onto the retina, and then the brain gives meaning to those signals. Here are some similarities and differences with the camera obscura.
1. Adaptive reasoning
Unlike an image from a camera, the image from the eye is tapped directly into our brain. In fact, parts of the eye are a literal extension of our brain! This means that the images we see are deeply intertwined with our cognitive perception at the moment. Our brains have an amazingly adaptive ability to create associations and sense of information given to it by our body. So, if you see a person standing near a window facing into the house, and a 60 watt incandescent light bulb is lighting her face. A camera would make a literal assessment of the colors and create a very Orange color on the face. However, to your eye, you wouldn't think anything strange. You would think it normal.
This is different than auto white balance, because it is not just finding a middle ground or color temperature, it is rewriting the rules based on what you subconsciously think is normal.
2. 3D vs 2D
Next time you see a nice scene, try closing one eye and see if you still think it is so great. 2D imagery requires the use of frames-within-frames, leading-lines, and light-and-shading to create a sense of depth. Without having these elements in the photo you take, it will be a flat image.
3. Perception of Scale
When you stand on a mountain and look out, you are perhaps inspired by the scene, and so snap a shot, however when you look at the picture, it doesn't feel so grand. One reason is that it is obviously now a small photograph, but the major reason, is loss of scale. Whether something is big or small, we lose that sense of scale in photographs without a familiar object for reference.
4. Green Bias vs Red Bias
The eye is more sensitive to Green, and digital cameras are sensitive to Red.
Many of you know that every DSLR uses a black and white sensor. The sensor has an RGB filter with a different color covering a different pixel on the sensor in a systematic order: Green-Red-Green on one row, and then Green-Blue-Green on the next....and so on. The imagining engine in the camera then deciphers the data and creates a color image. That is why a 21Megapixel sensor is not giving you true 21megapixel resolution.
Because a digital capture medium is more sensitive to Red light, the bayer pattern is designed to counteract the Red bias, and create a Green bias synthetically. But even then, digital cameras stiiiiiiill have a sensitivity to Red.
5. Shallow Depth of Field
Our eyes have a small focus point. Look at something. It is in focus, and everything else isn't. Although, Our eyes are constantly roaming, so having a small focus point is hardly noticed to most people. 35mm mimics this small focus point with shallow depth of field. Maybe this was a happy accident.
6. Translation of Dynamic Range and Contrast
We can see the details of a white flower at high noon, and find our way around a campsite on a moonless night. That's awesome. A camera can do the same, and even better with super slow and fast shutter speeds. What the camera struggles with is seeing both light and dark sources at the same time.
Even our eyes are limited to the range of light we can see at the same time. Ever struggle to see the road with the Sun in your eyes? Not only is the Sun so bright, it prevents us from seeing details in the road, but it is also causing lens flare in your eye. The Sun visor works like a matte box and french flag for your eye.
When you squint your eyes, you can increase contrast, and simulate what a digital slr sees.
(still working on this segment, just wanted to get some basic concepts down.)
Last edited by James0b57; 11-12-2011 at 09:45 AM.
09-25-2011 02:43 PM
There are different types of color mixing according to different theories: Look up "subtractive" and/or "additive". For more detail.
Subtractive Color mixing is the mixing theory we learn in 1st grade. Blue, Yellow, and Red are the primary colors, and mixing Blue and Yellow makes Green, etc.
When working with photography, both color theories are important to understand, but sometimes they do not explain the mix of colored light and colored objects:
The color of light shown on an object will change that color and its relation to other colors.
For example, if you have a Christmas outfit on, and the sweater is Red and the pants are Green, and you shine Red light on the outfit, the sweater will become Pink or White, and the pants will become Brown or Black.
Furthermore, a vibrant Orange shirt will look rather plain under candle light, but will look electric at twilight outdoors.
You can test this yourself. Grab a colorful painting and take a picture of it with daylight white balance (or appropriate K white balance) during the day, maybe by a window, then after the sun has gone down take another picture of it under incandescent light with the camera set to incandescent white balance (or appropriate K white balance). Then compare the two photos on your computer monitor. ...Are the color relationships the same? How have they changed?
Last edited by James0b57; 09-25-2011 at 08:25 PM.
09-25-2011 05:30 PM
Pressure tested your picture style today on a shoot (without the boss knowing) and man, I'm impressed. While I prefer flat for my features, the tv show I work for has a fast turn around, so your style seemed like a good choice to get a semi graded look without grading. I love the way it makes the blues pop, almost like A-Team. With the right art design, this could really shine. Great work and thank you!
-Shot in El Director Vision-
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09-26-2011 07:55 AM
Before going into the PSE to design, it is important to have a firm grasp of:
-Eye vs Digital capture vs Display of captured images
-H.264 codec characteristics at low bit rates
-use of Curves
-Canon DSLR image characteristics
09-26-2011 08:03 AM
CANON IMAGE CHARACTERISTICS
Since the video mode is giving us straight H.264, we can ignore the RAW image, and concentrate on the default picture styles.
The default picture styles are pre designed interpretations of the RAW image. They are recipes cooked up by the Canon experts over years of experience and polling.
Anything you design in the PSE must first start with one of these picture styles. You can change the base picture style for your custom picture style at the upper left drop box in the PSE, as well as in camera.
09-26-2011 08:15 AM
Despite common perception, Neutral is not getting the most dynamic range. Landscape reaches further into the highlights, and Neutral reaches further into the shadows, but clips earlier than Landscape in the highlights. The differences are very small though.
Last edited by James0b57; 11-12-2011 at 09:51 AM.