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How's my color grading (so far)?

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    How's my color grading (so far)?

    Do these even look graded, or just corrected? Or neither? lol I'm using a combination of manual adjustments and LUTs. Any feedback, either general or specific to each shot, is much appreciated. It's a cute short film and music video, and I'm honestly not sure what type of "look" I want. I don't see it having something extreme like the greenish tint of The Matrix.

    colorgradecheck1.jpg colorgradecheck2.jpg colorgradecheck3.jpg

    #2
    It looks normal which is probably the best compliment you could receive.

    The rest is semantics. A value transformation is technically a "correction", but you've added color and saturation to your pixels so why wouldn't it also be a grade at the same time, you know?

    With that said, I think most would agree that when discussing grading, it mostly refers to something more creative than a transformation. Like The Matrix. Or teal and orange. Or certain hues. Or certain saturation. Or lifted blacks. Etc.

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      #3
      Looks good to me. The overall level of contrast is pleasant to me and there's no overall cast that I can tell and/or find looks bad.

      Skins on first and second captures look a tiny bit green tinged on my current screen, but it is not calibrated, so it could easily my screen and not a problem with your grading.

      The hat on the second one looks a bit hot for my taste, but that's a taste thing.

      I am only interested in "strong grades" if the store requires it, these shots look like they come from quite "natural" scenarios and a strong grade would probably put a weird feeling on them that may or may not work, so I think you are taking the right approach (or at least the approach I would take).

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        #4
        Agree with everything said so far. Skin tone has been a major brainf*ck for me. It's hard for me to tell when it's too green or too yellow or too red or too anything. But I think I see what you're saying about the first 2. And I'll see if I can tone down the hat. I noticed that too. One of the LUTs did that. lol

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          #5
          They look like traditional Sony skintones to me.

          Correct or incorrect?

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by NorBro View Post
            They look like traditional Sony skintones to me.

            Correct or incorrect?
            Correct.

            Damn. Sony color science is that bad, huh? haha

            In all seriousness, if I had to do it all over again, I'd probably still use Sony. Biggest hurdles I'm having with grading is the inconsistent picture profiles I used and relative ignorance about white balance at the time.

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              #7
              haha, these just really felt like it to me, but I could have been wrong in other instances.

              Sometimes brains easily convince hearts. Or at least eyes.

              Comment


                #8
                I think the cinematography is somewhat lacking here. the scenes are high contrast and top lit with some panda eyes going on.

                the grade manages this as well as is possible really.. but better shot (more fill, better time of day, better position v the sun) would open up many more options in the grade without moving to full panda eye.

                i think there is a mild lack of saturation. ramp up the sat until see that a fill light/board was required
                Last edited by morgan_moore; 09-06-2021, 01:39 AM.
                http://www.sammorganmoore.com View my feature Film

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                  #9
                  36 12 14 and 66 13 17 rgb patches may help you with skin and also using the skin line on the vector scope
                  http://www.sammorganmoore.com View my feature Film

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                    #10
                    the first frame is 'hue left' of the skin line..

                    crop like this and twizzle the hue wheel until the data blob sits over the skin line. also add some sat so the blob extends along the skin line. maybe nick some pics from Vogue or roger deakins and see where thier skin sit.
                    Attached Files
                    http://www.sammorganmoore.com View my feature Film

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by morgan_moore View Post
                      I think the cinematography is somewhat lacking here. the scenes are high contrast and top lit with some panda eyes going on.

                      the grade manages this as well as is possible really.. but better shot (more fill, better time of day, better position v the sun) would open up many more options in the grade without moving to full panda eye.

                      i think there is a mild lack of saturation. ramp up the sat until see that a fill light/board was required
                      This is my first film, with 0 schooling, and I did everything myself. So you're probably being generous. heh

                      "Panda eyes" made me think of an epiphany I had recently: is the function of a makeup artist in part to aid coloring in post? I see panda eyes in the first one, not the last 2. She was def wearing eye shadow extended above the eyelids, which may have contributed. Though watching in motion I think the "panda eyes" thing is less apparent, so it could be that particular still.

                      As for the vector scope, below is what I got cropping to her cheek. Moving the circle around, it only dipped "left" with the highlights under her eyes, which looks to be about where you cropped it to. So maybe that's what's giving the whole thing the perception of a greenish tint. In another shot, I was banging my head against the wall as to why the whole thing seemed too magenta no matter what I did. Turns out the highlights on one side of people's faces was light PURPLE! So subtle. Once I added a color mask and turned it light beige, the whole frame looked better. So I'm thinking perceptions of certain tones can be influenced by adjacent tones.

                      colorgradecheck5.jpg

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                        #12
                        to me panda eyes is that there is too much top light - nothing to do with makeup.

                        it is present in 1 and 2 but not 3

                        it will (without 'secondaries') restrict you from pushing or pulling the file as far as it might need to go to get nough contrast and saturation in the skin.

                        -

                        avoid panda eye by using..
                        backlight, flill lights, fill reflector board, magic hour

                        the hard front light in image 3 has no panda eyes but does not help the skin of the female to look its best.

                        --

                        it is important to work with the concepts of micro and macro contrast. panda eyes are 'macro contrast'. I would not have rolled on any of these shots as a cinematographer as each scene has too much macro contrast.
                        for example his black coat 'closes' your grading options - it makes the overall scene to contrasty (macro contrast)
                        Last edited by morgan_moore; 09-07-2021, 10:13 PM.
                        http://www.sammorganmoore.com View my feature Film

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                          #13
                          I didn't even know what panda eyes was till today. But like they say, once you see it you can't unsee it and it's bugging me now, so...

                          I think this is the best I can do without it looking unnatural. Panda effect is still there but less blatant. Thanks for the brutal feedback.

                          colorgradecheck6.jpg

                          Comment


                            #14
                            #1 & #2 the skin tones look a little jaundiced (yellow / green), but overall they have a good clean look with nice contrast.
                            #3 looks a little red / magenta to me, but across brights and darks so it gives the sense of a pink wash across the image. Need to cool down the darks to contrast the warmer skin tone.

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