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Seeking a Grading Tutorial / advice

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Willie Frazier
Seeking a Grading Tutorial / advice
on Sep 2, 2013 at 1:16:18 am

Hello Everyone,

I have been a 3D Motion Graphics Designer and Video Editor for about 12 years now. In that time, I have only been asked to color correct, and given the subject matter I was working with, FCP's Color Corrector 3-way was all I needed.

Well, times change... I am now doing a job where, in addition to doing the graphics work and design, I have been asked to grade a bunch of footage (4K RED) of the model (it's a cosmetics company) to make it closely resemble images of the same model as they appear in their print literature. To me, this seems a near impossible task, but I am sure there is some way of getting at least close to what they want for an experienced colorist - which I am not.

I have familiarized myself with Speed Grade CC as it was something I had ready access to (being that I use other Adobe tools regularly), and it seems robust enough to handle what I need.

Well, as you know, understanding the tools is only half the battle - I now need to learn some technique, and very specific technique at that. I have done some poking around the web but I have not found any tutorials relating to grading footage in this way - that is to give this model the appearance of a 'perfected' still image.

Any help or advice here will be greatly appreciated.

- WIll

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Phillip Todd
Re: Seeking a Grading Tutorial / advice
on Sep 2, 2013 at 4:35:36 pm

Hi Willie,

There are two sources of CC information I follow regularly. On both sites you may find some free lessons, advice and the opportunity to purchase more.

1) Denver Riddle of Color grading Central. He has some PPro and AE presets among others:

2) Shian Storm of Color GHear. He's now got his "GHears" translated to Speed Grade. I know of Shian from the hacked GH2 community forums at h
He seems to have a very deep understanding of image manipulation.
His "GHears" were originally for AE only in 2011, today he's brought them to many other platforms including PPro & Speed Grade. He's also got a new grain reducer for AE for a little more money. I think with the GHears you have a lot of combinations available, more so than say 20 presets. Shain describes them as more than presets, but, not a plugin. Check out his free tutorials and see if it's for you.

Here's Shain's description of his products:

"Shian February 14, 2013

CGT - is AE only : it has GHrain Killer, Film Grain, ColorFist (advanced 3-way color Corrector) and some pre-made gradients.

CG Pro - is for FCP7, PP, SG, and Resolve - it does not have Ghrain Killer, or gradients, and doesn't need a 3-way CC as there are 3-ways in all of the other programs, it does have downloadable Film Grain Overlays.

CG Pro Plus- is both CGT and CG Pro together."

from: at the bottom of the page.

Both are reasonably priced and on sale through the end of Labor Day (today)!

Disclaimer: I have not used either product.

Let us know what you end up with and your impressions.

Phillip Todd

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Shian Storm
Re: Seeking a Grading Tutorial / advice
on Sep 5, 2013 at 6:17:19 am

Thanks for the recommendation, Phillip.

I think what ColorGHear is and does is summed up best in this video. Essentially it's a piano. By that I mean, all the adjustments one has to do to get footage through the tech and style passes and into something beautiful, I have boiled down to 37 operations or "Gears" which can be played like Keys on a piano to make "music" with your footage.

So rather than having to build a piano every time you want to play a song, I have built one for you. The video explains the rest without an excessive sales pitch or overt marketing.

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Dave Grein
Re: Seeking a Grading Tutorial / advice
on Sep 3, 2013 at 5:08:13 pm

check this guy out...
Patrick has a 4 hour course

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Willie Frazier
Re: Seeking a Grading Tutorial / advice
on Sep 5, 2013 at 10:51:47 pm

Thanks everyone for the replies. I'm digesting it all now.

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