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Need to Fix a Color Problem

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Thomas Hughes
Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 6:25:29 pm

I have a wedding ceremony shot with a Sony Z5U from the back of the aisle. Garden Wedding, in a meadow surrounded by tall green trees. The sun is behind and above the trees, house right so the meadow, the ceremony site, is in this wonderful evenly lit shade. The exposure is great, the colors pop, the whites are perfect. The tall trees behind the couple are catching the sun and they’re blown out. For some reason, it caused them to turn bright, day-glow yellow. It’s only a problem when the camera is wide because it occurs at about twenty feet and above. The bride has a problem with it because it simply does not look the way her ceremony site actually looked. There were no yellow trees anywhere, especially day-glow, eye-catching yellow.
Is there a way to spot correct this? My editor did two things that improved it, put a dark vignette top and bottom, and used a filter to pull back on the yellow. Much improved but still yellow. I had her try covering the offending area with a chunk of shaded green leaves from another tree and feathering the edges. That worked until the camera moves. Then whatever we do to shrink and move it as the camera is moving, looks hokey and pulls your eye. I’d be grateful for any suggestions. Thanks so much.

Thomas H


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Bret Williams
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 6:42:10 pm

Isolate the yellow hue with 3 way color corrector and lessen it or change it to green or a warmer color you prefer.


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Thomas Hughes
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 6:49:18 pm

Thanks Bret. That's actually what she already did. I said above that she used a filter to pull back on the yellow, what I meant was she used the 3-way color corrector. In using that, she was pretty limited because it affected the whole picture. Is there a way to isolate and treat just the problem area with the 3-way color corrector?

Thomas H


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 6:57:43 pm

[Thomas Hughes] "Is there a way to isolate and treat just the problem area with the 3-way color corrector?"

Yes, but I rarely use it, and I don't have a manual handy. I bet the editor does.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Bret Williams
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 7:40:21 pm

Since the only manual is on the computer these days that's true.

Doesn't anyone click around a little bit and learn their tools anymore? At the bottom of the three way color corrector open the little triangle that says... "limit effect." Then eyedrop from the resulting tools the yellow. You will now have three areas to adjust to isolate the yellow trees. Click the toggle to put it in mask mode so you can see what it's choosing. Expand the luma, saturation, and color selections by moving the little bars around. it's pretty obvious once you play a little. You'll see the matte change. Once it's pretty good, soften it and play with the edge thinness. Once you have the matte shaped like the yellow tree region, turn off the matte view and start playing with the color wheels. To get rid of yellow, drag the center away from yellow toward blue or green.

Good luck. It's an incredible powerful tool. I'm actually color correcting some beautiful shots of Burlington VT right now with many of the same issues. In certain light the trees do take on a yellowish hue through the leaves. A result of the green and sunset colors mixing perhaps. Your eyes can adjust in real life, but the camera captures only one color balance at a time. It actually looks great in my footage, but perhaps yours is a different situation.


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Andrew Kimery
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 7:33:42 pm

[Thomas Hughes] "Is there a way to isolate and treat just the problem area with the 3-way color corrector?"

There is and I think that's what Bret was referring to in his post when he said to isolate the yellow using the 3-way. At the bottom of the 3-way filter there is a section called "limit effect" that is collapsed by default so you need to twirl the triangle down to expose it. There is an eye dropper on the right hand side and you use that to select the color range your want to change (in this case yellow).

If your editor is familiar w/Apple's Color that would be a better tool for this, IMO. If not, you can probably get by using the 3-way (or stacking multiple instances of the 3-way if one is not enough to get the job done).


-Andrew

3.2GHz 8-core, FCP 6.0.4, 10.5.5
Blackmagic Multibridge Eclipse (6.8.1)



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Bret Williams
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 7:44:04 pm

I'm still learning Color myself. What is the best approach to fixing a shot like this in Color? IOW, do you open the shot from the hard drive and fix it and do a save as or is there some roundtrip method I'm not yet aware of ? I've seen the whole sequence process that Walter describes where you do color correction as a very last step, but it's never really a last step. I could see the masking tools in Color helping for sure if the isolation method doesn't work. But it's pretty decent.


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Michael Gissing
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 9:06:38 pm

Round trip with Color, even if you just copy a few shots into a new sequence. In Color, there are HSL keys in the secondaries room. This is just the same as limit effect on the 3WAY with the added advantage of limiting the HSL key to inside a shape so that it only effects within an area.

The combinations of vignetting and HSL keying within the secondaries gives you much more control. It is like having ten 3 way CCs available - primary in, 8 secondaries and primary out.

Dive into Color Bret. It looks different but it is hugely powerful and not so difficult to get to grips with if you are already advanced with the 3 Way CC


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Thomas Hughes
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 9:09:11 pm

Thanks for all the suggestions guys. We got it to a place that's acceptable. Thanks so much.

Thomas H


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Bret Williams
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 9:55:42 pm

I suppose. But in FCP I just utilize unlimited 3 way color corrector instances. Just stack them up. And you can easily slip in garbage mattes with a duplicate layer, etc. As well, you can set up a color correction and add it to clips in bins. 3 way may not be as slick, but it's all contained within a portable sequence that another editor (or myself sometime later) can follow. Color will be even better when they set it up like motion for roundtripping. I can see it being much more powerful.


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Michael Gissing
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 10:01:01 pm

Take the leap and read my comments in the Colorista Vs Color thread. I am sending work to others (graphics & CGI) and they can open the original in FCP, the grade round trip or open Color and keep working on what I have done. It is just as portable. I used to have more problems with custom filters like Nattress Gamma filters sharing with other editors and facilities.


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Bret Williams
Re: Need to Fix a Color Problem
on Oct 28, 2010 at 11:51:54 pm

Excellent. Will do. I'm just getting started with Color. Doing tutorials and such. So that's all good news.


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