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Color is a powerful signal in video; it can subtly project emotion, mood, time of day, and location. Learn to manipulate these visual elements in a variety of shots, from interior spaces to outside landscapes, with color grading. Filmmaker, colorist, and experienced editor Simon Walker shows how to simulate a light source and different types of light, and choose an evocative color for your footage to tell the story of a particular location. Plus, learn techniques to change the time of day, the type of room, and the overall mood of a location.
Simon works with Adobe Premiere Pro and the Magic Bullet Colorista II and Looks plugins, but these lessons can be applied to any color correction workflow.
We have a very positive emotional reaction to warm colors. They remind us of literal warmth, such as basking in the warm sunshine or sitting in front of a warm fire. The yellow and the orange light that the sun and the fires give off reminds us of their physical warming properties. We also associate warm colors with relaxing and even romantic feelings. For example, in this case, a candlelit dinner. We can enhance the effect of candlelight and help suggest more warmth and more romance in an image very easily with a Three-Way Color Corrector.
I'm using the warm sequence, and I've applied Looks to this first clip, let's open the Looks builder. I can drag on from the subject area as (INAUDIBLE) Color Corrector, and because most of the changes to light that is given off by a light source happen in the brightest areas, I can push the highlights towards a warmer color. And I'm warming up the scene. I can then enhance the mood by moving the mid-tones towards a warmer color as well.
And here's the before and after. Our reactions to these sorts of colors on screen are much more positive. We can also enhance the mood by simulating some of the properties of light. So we could throw on a small bit of diffusion into the shot, and something that is targeting just the highlights, so I've got the highlights only set to 100% here. Here's the before and after, and we can then push those defused highlights towards a warmer color too. This helps set a positive mood that we've introduced with the warmer colors and the highlights.
We could do the same thing with natural light as well. I'll just hit Finished here, and I'll jump to the second clip, and open Looks on that clip. Here we can push the outside lighting from a slightly white or bluish tinge towards yellow using the highlight. And this already has the effect of increasing our positive vibe towards this mood. It also changes the weather. It's also suggesting that the sun is out, outside the window. Let's enhance this mood even more by pushing the mid-tones towards that same color.
And just as a little finishing touch, let's put some diffusion in here to simulate how the sunlight might diffuse through these windows. Let's put some diffusion on there and bring down the amount of glow. Instantly with these very simple changes, we're changing the mood. You can do this either technically, to make sure it's just light the changing, to give it a warmer look. Or you can increase the mood with the mid-tones and the diffusion. Of course it depends on how you want to portray the scene. But it's interesting that these small little Color Corrections can be an extension of the emotional temperature in the room.
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