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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.
There are lots of tools you can use to make color correction adjustments. I'll be using Red Giant's Colorista two and Magic bullet looks during this course, and they are both plug-ins, they work as filters inside the host software, in this case, Premiere Pro. But they also work in a range of software like, After Effects, and Final Cut Pro, and Motion, and also in programs like Avid. And in Sony Vegas, when you've installed the plugin in turns up, just like any other filter, inside the video effects folder. Here we go. Magic Bullet Colorista and I'll drag it onto this first clip, and switch my work space over to Color Correction so I can see the scopes. And switch over to RGB parade.
And if I highlight the clip, and then go over to Effects controls, I can see the controls inside Colorista two. A lot like many other color correctors, it has the three color wheels: shadows, midtones, and highlights. It does have the ability to be able to control the deepness of the shadows with the luma control on the outside of the color wheel. As well as on the midtones and the highlights. And for some editors moving across between software platforms, this is very comforting, because these act in a very similar way as the controls in Final Cut Pro 7, for example. And so, people who are moving from Final Cut to say, Premiere Pro have the same controls inside the interface with, certainly with Colorista, because it works in both programs.
So you can use these to deepen the shadows and increase the highlights and increase the contrast over an image. Colorista also has the ability to target single colors in an image, and just drag on these pans to either desaturate so I'm desaturating the oranges, which tend to be skin tones, or to saturate them by dragging them outside the wheel like this here's the before and after. I'll just reset the filter for a second and pull up this disclosure triangle to show you there are three separate different rooms, or areas if you like, for making color corrections. And we'll come back to secondary in a second.
I just wanted to show you the master section. And in the master section here you have the ability to drag on the curve sliders. So I can decrease the shadows for example and the mid-tones, here. So I can make the whole image darker. That the reason that I'm doing this is because I want to switch on the master power mask here. And I can switch this to be an ellipse. And then it shows up a mask on the screen. And you can reposition this mask around the image.
And that correction I made to the shadows here, means that, that correction is being limited just to the mask. Of course this doesn't work particular on this image it would be much better if the shadows around her face were being deepened but you can do this of course by inverting the master mask here and then this becomes a vignette which you can then drag out and reshape and rotate. And if I just deselect the filter we can look at it with and without the effect. And the reason why it's nice to do this with Colorista is because you can key-frame these effects. In Adobe software, anything with this stop watch icon means that you can turn it on and key-frame as it says here an animation.
Or more crucially key frame the position and parameters of a mask. One thing that's worth pointing out though with Colorista which I'll do on this second clip here is how it processes the color. I've already applied an instance of Colorista to this clip which I'll switch on here. And I'll make an adjustment here I'll decrease the shadows slightly and increase the highlights. And you can see here, that the saturation has increased.
Here's the before and after. And that's because Colorista operates in the RGB color space, within Premier Pro. If I make the same correction with the in-built three way color corrector, inside Premier Pro, where I increase the highlights. And deepen the shadows. There isn't this increase in saturation. That's because the three-way color corrector in Premiere Pro uses the YUV color space. Or more technically the YCbCr. It's called YUV because. Let's type in the three here.
You got this little icon here, YUV, an that means that, every filter with YUV next to it, is using that particular color space. I'll hit this button here, an we can show all the filters that use that. An I can show you the practical effect using the scopes. I'm going to switch on the YCbCr Parade. And making these adjustments with, the highlight adjuster an the three-way color correcter, in the one native to Premier Pro. Means that I'm just affecting the Y channel. This is the luminance channel that controls most of the information for the video.
And the other two channels combine together to form the color image. This is slightly different to the RGB mode in which a color corrector such as Colorista targets all the channels. So if I make a correction in Colorista It's effecting not just the white channel, but the other ones too. And if I switch over to the RGB parade, here it is effecting all of them. So it is just something to be aware of. When you increase the contrast in Colorista.
You may have to play with the saturation to bring it down according to how you adjusted things. But this is a very standard way of working Final Cut Pro 7 works in this way and many other color correction software operate in RGB space. But it's important to know the difference between the different tools that you're using. Another reason I'd like to use Colorista is, it's keya /g. It's got one of the most useful keyas for working in premier pro. I've already applied Colorista to this clip, and what I want to demonstrate is the ability to target just a single color. In this case, our errant orange jumper and desaturate it. So, I'll open up Colorista, and I'll close up the primary section, and open up the secondary, and the secondary allows me to use the Kia here. So, if I launch this, I get the Kia interface, and it's reasonably straightforward to use.
You just select a color, and that creates a mask and then you fine tune the mask to select just that color. In this case I can click on the plus button and just keep drawing on the color I want to remove until I've got a decent mask here in the matte. I can slightly soften the edges which is always good to make it sit better in the final composition. And you can also adjust the different settings on the scope here to make sure that you're targeting the color you want to.
I dragged to far here I begin (INAUDIBLE) to reveal more hue in the image. So I want to just make sure I'm targeting that color only. And then when I hit OK, I can go up to the saturation controls for the secondary area and bring down. The saturation of that selected area. This was a very quick selection. And I might have to do a little more detail in here to make sure I've got the entire jumper selected. But the point was I just wanted to show you the concept of making primary adjustments where you use the color wheels.
Typically in the primary section here, to adjust the brightness of the whole image. And then you use this secondary corrections, or the secondary section here, to adjust in this case saturation, but to adjust elements of small details that you have selected in the image and those are called secondary corrections. It doesn't matter which tools you use these are core concepts for making either smaller secondary corrections on specific colors in the image or primary corrections where you're adjusting a color for the whole image.
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