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Liam

grading feedback?

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Amateur at grading, just fiddling with Hitfilm Express (a little janky.. you just end up with like a million sliders attached to the clip, but better features than my old nle)

t3i, not a fancy grade. Probably had white balance wrong in-camera and didn't want to push too much, so it's still a little too cool I think. maybe overexposed a little too. Honest opinions? too much red in the skins? did the sky end up with a little magenta? over saturated? any beginner grading tutorials you guys found helpful? or better in-camera PP settings to consider if I screwed myself over a little? though maybe I'm just looking for a pat on the back and a confidence boost..

thanks for any feedback. I'll try not to post every test I do

grade test 1.jpg

image0000.jpg

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

This is way too blue. If you have people in the shot, one common way to grade is to isolate the skin and grade it so they line up along the "skin line" in the vector scope. The interesting fact about skin color is that it always lines up that way regardless of the race, so this procedure always works except for extreme black and white.

E.g., here's a simple grade of your original (ungraded) shot adjust just for colors. It may not be what you want, but at least it's adjusted more or less for the skin.

 

Grade.tga

Grade.png

Settings.png

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hm, thanks guys. feel like probably this isn't the best example if the main problem is that it's way way too blue. I do see it now, but those corrections look really sepia to me and have other issues now, like green sky, guessing because it's so compressed and can't stand to be pushed much.

 

@Sekhar is that resolve? those tools look more fun to learn with than what I've found on Hitfilm, but you need a pretty good computer to run it right?

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It's SpeedGrade.

As I said, this is a correction for the skin only, and the grade to correct skin may not work for the rest of the scene depending on what kind of look you want. But once you correct for skin, you can always correct the other stuff like the sky (assuming it's not blown out like here), foliage, etc. to whatever you want.

The key point I wanted to make was that if you have people in the scene, you generally start by correcting the skins because viewers are much more offended by bad skin color than say bad foliage shades.

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Personally, I would try to adjust the camera settings correctly in the first place. What settings are you using and how do you balance the color when shooting? The vector scope is your best friend when color balancing skin tones, but it won't perform miracles.

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

In-camera: 

-Exposure is perfect for the t3i (ETTR just before clipping) so the image is clean.

-WB is incorrect (your biggest mistake here), even Auto WB works great on a t3i

-Picture style is a bit contrasty/saturated? If so choose Neutral, Sharpening -4 (all the way), Contrast -4, saturation -2, colour tone 0

Why afraid to push? Go ahead

ZvNDOq4.jpg

This is ''colour correction'' = neutralizing the incorrect WB:

Fpy5rs1.jpg

It's robust enough even for a little sharpening/pop: 

OsDETkr.jpg

A grade for a happy corporate/comedy piece:

AXxevPk.jpg

For a moody horror piece:

FsrFf8Q.jpg

Or pull a PhilipBloom (Instagram yellow + raise blacks)

VEJyaSc.jpg

 

This is in simple 5 minute manual tweaks. If you had set a correct White Balance it would have been even much easier/faster to grade. 

Grading is your own choice, tweak and see what YOU like. Nothing wrong or right.. I mean go nuts! 

 

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It's cloudy. Thanks again!

Ah, OK. The t3i isn't great with DR (I have one), and I don't think I ever got much detail with it in the clouds. The waveform tends to be kind of squished. There was another post here on EOSHD of a wedding shot with t3i, it was pretty impressive...you might want to check it out if you plan to continue shooting with your t3i.

Edit: just remembered, WRT DR, did you try the Technicolor CIneStyle? I've had some pretty good results with it.

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Personally, I would try to adjust the camera settings correctly in the first place. What settings are you using and how do you balance the color when shooting? The vector scope is your best friend when color balancing skin tones, but it won't perform miracles.

I have sharpness and contrast all the way down on a standard profile and saturation at -1. manual white balance with the arrows like magic lantern allows which I find convenient (though that day I think I think I was filming inside and out, so I kept the white balance kind of in the middle in case I forgot one time to switch and gotten even worse results). I should learn to use a vector scope.. I'm sure that would help. thanks

In-camera: 

-Exposure is perfect for the t3i (ETTR just before clipping) so the image is clean.

-WB is incorrect (your biggest mistake here), even Auto WB works great on a t3i

-Picture style is a bit contrasty/saturated? If so choose Neutral, Sharpening -4 (all the way), Contrast -4, saturation -2, colour tone 0

 

This is in simple 5 minute manual tweaks. If you had set a correct White Balance it would have been even much easier/faster to grade. 

Grading is your own choice, tweak and see what YOU like. Nothing wrong or right.. I mean go nuts! 

 

yeah, That's pretty much my settings. and I was testing pushing it further, with better results than I expected. you're right, it's petty flexible. but still all the colors can shift at some point and get frustrating. and I really do want to preserve like the texture of the skin or the 3d quality of it. I feel like it's easy for them to turn just yellowwww

Ah, OK. The t3i isn't great with DR (I have one), and I don't think I ever got much detail with it in the clouds. The waveform tends to be kind of squished. There was another post here on EOSHD of a wedding shot with t3i, it was pretty impressive...you might want to check it out if you plan to continue shooting with your t3i.

Edit: just remembered, WRT DR, did you try the Technicolor CIneStyle? I've had some pretty good results with it.

I saw that wedding, very well done. also a huge Kendy fan and very stingy with money, so very inspirational to me, haha. that wedding (by ricardo I think?) was why I upgraded NLE's, trying to get more out of my gear than I seemed to be able to before. I was just looking at cinestyle. I'll definitely have to give it a try, probably boosting my motivation to learn to use a vector scope.

 

Thanks for being patient with me guys :) I know it didn't look great, and I can be kind of stubborn really :s but this forum is really helpful and encouraging.

yeah taking out the blue definitely helps!

image7.png

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I'm a horrible colorist, but I would like to see if you could utilize that bluish tint and go day for night with it. 

I'm sure it's not your intent, but I just love day for night. 

Funny thing is, I just loaded ML onto my eos-m so I can mess with the 3x Crop and my vintage c-mount lenses... Loads of fun and fairly decent results. 

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I'm a horrible colorist, but I would like to see if you could utilize that bluish tint and go day for night with it. 

I'm sure it's not your intent, but I just love day for night. 

Funny thing is, I just loaded ML onto my eos-m so I can mess with the 3x Crop and my vintage c-mount lenses... Loads of fun and fairly decent results. 

ha, I was giving it a shot just for fun, but I'm also horrible, so might not post any of my results ;) actually realized I don't even know how to raise blacks or try to pull detail out of the highlights with Hitflim (not that you need those for this task) but I may not be very equipped for any specialist tasks. could be a nice shot to try it with though, since their aren't like street lamps and a bright sun in the shot. definitely would want a bluer, underexposed look for that.

yeah, I'm a fan of ML and the 3x crop on the t3i as well. kinda wish I'd went with the eos-m, myself. old c-mounts sound fun :3

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pc. there is an effect to crush the blacks and blowout the highlights, but the slider doesn't go the other way, think I've looked pretty thoroughly. might need to buy some pack or get the full version. Editing on it is very Premiere-like as opposed to Avid-like, which is calming to return to :-) might look into Blender (or.. MAYBE actually paying for something) if I eventually decide this is too restrictive

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I don't know much about Hitfilm, but I would imagine they have some color plug ins, or something. And, I was able to use davinci lite 11 on a MacBook Air without any issues, so you may have more than enough power with your pc. 

Btw, yeah the c-mounts are a blast. I am in the middle of editing a comparison video between the nx500, the a5100 and the eos-m with ML. The results are actually surprising me. 

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I don't know much about Hitfilm, but I would imagine they have some color plug ins, or something. And, I was able to use davinci lite 11 on a MacBook Air without any issues, so you may have more than enough power with your pc. 

Btw, yeah the c-mounts are a blast. I am in the middle of editing a comparison video between the nx500, the a5100 and the eos-m with ML. The results are actually surprising me. 

interesting! Have a favorite among the three? Unless that would spoil it ;)

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

Don't complicate setting white balance for yourself. Using a vectroscopr isn't a vital step, I've gone by filming for 40+ years without ever giving much attention to it. In fact I find it my least favourite of all scopes, perhaps I just sometimes use the skin-tone line.

So, on the 600D (A great camera with ML) you don't need to se WB manually. You have three ways just in case you're unaware as the picture you posted has a completely incorrect WB

1- Auto works exceptionally well and makes extremely smooth transitions. This is the easiest way but comes with the risk of having the WB not fixed/locked.

2- Second easier, is using the presets on the camera (daylight, tungsten, cloudy, etc), they work great, had you chosen daylight WB on this scene it would have been great. With this method the WB is locked, but the downside is that it's large steps so you don't get to fine tune WB for something in-between. And you have to change in each location (remember to!)

3- Third hardest method is manually dialing in the Kelvin and the Magenta/green shift with ML (the kelvin number alone is NOT enough). The way to do this is get something that you know is white (a piece of paper) in the frame before hitting record, then adjust WB until the paper is white on the Canon LCD screen. This is a very accurate way, downside is of course doing the step each location and again remembering to do it.

Using any of these will get you a correctly WBed image, then you can adjust in post for other coloiur tweaks/grading with much higher precision and control over image tones.

On Canon cameras I use AWB. Nikon cameras I use the presets (Nikons fluctuate and adjust WB during almost fixed scenes, not great), Sony I do a manual WB and push it two notches towards blue and magenta to remove (not completely) their dreaded yellow/green cast. Canon AWB is the best in both accuracy, stability and natural transitions. Never had a single AWB issue as I always have with the Nikons (stability) and Sonys (accuracy).

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On Canon cameras I use AWB. Nikon cameras I use the presets (Nikons fluctuate and adjust WB during almost fixed scenes, not great), Sony I do a manual WB and push it two notches towards blue and magenta to remove (not completely) their dreaded yellow/green cast. Canon AWB is the best in both accuracy, stability and natural transitions. Never had a single AWB issue as I always have with the Nikons (stability) and Sonys (accuracy).

The problem with AWB is that it varies from shot to shot, making shot matching a challenge in post. If the lighting is non-standard (say you aren't using regular tungsten or day light, and standard profiles don't work), I suggest going with custom WB or even manual K setting.

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Yeah, I've been using the manual kelvin numbers, and when I remember to do it, I think I'm pretty good at it. I'm a little scared of shifts within a shot when doing auto. Also, with auto, couldn't it kind of ruin for example shooting at golden hour? When you want to keep it gold?

Also, when stacking effects, I was just kind of going with my gut (after posting this and realizing order matters). You'd want like NR to be the first effect applied, then white balance, then contrast, then color wheels, then sharpening, then film grain? Maybe that's way off..

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