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    Contactless (MyRodeReel entry)
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    It looks like this may not be the ideal post according to the guidelines which I wish I had read earlier.

    I actually had sort of a production diary that I shared only via email with the team and I wish I had shared it here all along.

    Anyway, I made a short and sent it to the Rode Reel competition

    https://www.rode.com/myrodereel/watch/entry/7519

    After sending it I noticed things I could have done better (hate my voice in most of the BTS and I am already getting help with that), so criticism is still welcome so that next time it will be better.

    The film did not turn out exactly as I wanted, so, if you are really curious, you may want to check the script and shotlist here

    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1y7...zHvAxX-UtjLKcL

    And finally, the embarrassing part: The competition has a public's award (aka popularity competition) if anyone is so kind, I would love to get some votes.

    Also, if anyone else has submitted an entry, feel free to use this thread if that's how it is done around here.


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    #2
    Senior Member Cary Knoop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aram View Post
    After sending it I noticed things I could have done better (hate my voice in most of the BTS and I am already getting help with that), so criticism is still welcome so that next time it will be better.
    Frankly, the footage looks like a misgraded or ungraded log video.
    It definitely does not look like anything Rec709.


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    Damn, Cary, not mincing words, are we?
    But criticisms welcome means criticisms welcome, so thank you.

    The short was mostly shot in slog2 with an A6500 (there's a shot done with an A5100, which is quite obvious to me, but nobody has guessed it yet).

    I guess you would say misgraded, since it was graded. I first used the sony LUT to convert from slog 2 to Rec. 709 (so I guess it was actually Rec. 709 at a point), but I did not like the resulting look. I found it too high contrast and over saturated, so I used some curves to manage the contrast (kept the darkest blacks black according to the scopes, but lifted the shadows quite a bit because I really dislike clipped blacks and there was a lot of clipping just after I applied the LUT). Then I just took the saturation back a tiny bit.

    There are some adjustments to sharpness here and there and a bit of denoising on one shot, but that's it.

    I do not love the look of every shot, but there are a few that I enjoy.

    Out of curiosity, how would you have approached grading it?


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    Senior Member Cary Knoop's Avatar
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    Here are a couple of details I want to highlight.
    Now obviously I do not have access to the original log files so it is not very easy to make adjustments because a lot is already "baked in" and YouTube reencoded everything.

    There are no blacks, everything is raised, in all scenes.

    Here is an example (note that in DaVinci Resolve 0 is black on the scopes both for data and video levels):

    black-levels-rode.jpg

    Same frame but with more normal black levels and slightly warmer:

    black-levels-rode-adj.jpg

    Many scenes are lacking anything over mid-tones:

    The light of the lamp should be a specular but on the scope it is hardly above a mid-tone.

    white-levels-rode.jpg

    Same frame but a bit more even-lighted:

    white-levels-rode-adj.jpg

    Look at this night shot:

    night-rode.jpg

    Very hard to adjust because a lot is already "baked in" but here is a bit more contrasty version:

    night-rode-adj.jpg


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    Thank you so much Cary!

    I have to say yes to the first shot. I actually prefer your grade. I modified curves a bit and did not get to what you did (which I still like better than what I have achieved) but I came close enough.

    Regarding the second shot, I love where you took the sofa. It's less like the "real" colour but I do like it better. I am not so sure about the general increase of green in most of the image otherwise. Specifically about the brightness, I initially was surprised when you said there was nothing over midtones. I opened Resolve again and looked and by eye the lamp already looked like it was clipping to me. Then I checked scopes. We clearly have our scopes configured in a different way. I always put the brightness of the waveform at maximum and there's a noticeable peak of green at about 90%, but still, there should be no clipping and I was seeing it, so I went to scope configuration and, surprise! There is new option "extents" that shows the tiniest bit of clipping is actually going on!

    I am going to put this one to taste (I don't love the way I did it either, but I would say the issues here have more to do with the way the scene is lighted than with the grading).

    The third one, I actually quite like what you did by itself, but it feels quite "intense" and stylised, matching it to the rest of the shots in the "scene" would have given quite a vibe that would have been quite different from what I wanted to achieve.

    Thanks again! There's one thing that you have really convinced me of, I should have pushed those blacks a bit lower.

    If you feel like it, I would be happy to render a few short clips directly from the source so that you can have a go with better source material (no grade from me, no extra compression from youtube)


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