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Fixing unlit in-car footage shot at night

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Christian Neil
Fixing unlit in-car footage shot at night
on Feb 4, 2018 at 2:58:01 pm

Hello!

Kind of throwing a "Hail Mary" here, but I'm trying to finish a project, and am getting a little desperate.

I'm using PP18, and one of the scenes that has been a thorn in my side is a scene shot at night inside a pickup truck with no practical lighting. I've been messing around with the brightness and contrast settings, but ultimately, I have a choice between unlit actors, or visible actors under a dingy grey haze.

I'm sure that this is a highly common problem, and hoping someone here might be willing to chime in with some good advice.

Thanks in advance!



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Tero Ahlfors
Re: Fixing unlit in-car footage shot at night
on Feb 4, 2018 at 3:25:38 pm

If you have an underexposed dark shot there's no information to bring back.

Reshoot or deal with what you have.


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Chris Wright
Re: Fixing unlit in-car footage shot at night
on Feb 4, 2018 at 3:54:55 pm

depending on how bad it is, play around with the cineon effect, might get lucky with it and neatvideo. if there's no rgb info, it will be grey at all values.


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Christian Neil
Re: Fixing unlit in-car footage shot at night
on Feb 4, 2018 at 4:25:27 pm

I had some interesting results messing around with the Cineon effect. I don't completely understand what all the controls mean, but when I moved the "internal white point" slider, it lightened things up significantly.

What I wound up doing was playing around with the order of the effects, and by setting brightness to 30, contrast to 10, and moving it on top of my color correction adjustments, it lightened them up without that dingy grey color. So it looks like slightly better crap.

Thanks for the quick replies!



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Chris Wright
Re: Fixing unlit in-car footage shot at night
on Feb 4, 2018 at 6:38:16 pm

glad to hear it smells better ;)


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Fixing unlit in-car footage shot at night
on Feb 4, 2018 at 4:01:36 pm

[Christian Neil] "I'm sure that this is a highly common problem..."

Not really. It's difficult to understand how a DP would not know that their subjects need to be visible in the shot.
Unless you can re-shoot, you are stuck with what you have. You've learned why the phrase, "we'll fix it in post" spells doom 8 times out of 10.

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Christian Neil
Re: Fixing unlit in-car footage shot at night
on Feb 4, 2018 at 4:27:41 pm

This was a very guerilla production with a DP shooting in 4k for the first time. Still no excuse for not lighting your scenes. though.



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