The reality today is that more and more editors and DPs are forced to color grade or color correct their own footage. Budgets are getting tighter and yet clients expect even faster turnarounds.
One way to solve this problem is to buy a pack of LUTs, but these have the following disadvantages:
- They cost money.
- You don’t know what went into creating them, so you don’t know their limits.
- It’s hard to get them to match challenging footage in a sequence.
- Most of the time, you’re just aimlessly winging it, and your coloring skills don’t improve. Take away the LUT, and you’re back to square one.
- The solution these companies come up with is to produce even more LUTs!
What if you could create your own film LUTs:
- Without knowing how to color grade.
- Without using any LUTs.
- Without using any plugins, paid or free.
That would be something, right? That’s why I created this video, how to get the film look easily with one simple trick:
- Images are from pixabay.com and are in the public domain.
- Credit to Garrett Gibbons for showing us how to create the orange-teal look with RGB curves. You can watch his original tutorial here.
- The sixth patch is at 40 IRE, and the middle tone in your footage should also be around 40 IRE. In the video I didn’t do it because it’s subjective. By varying the gamma/mid tones/exposure you can shift this point to wherever you feel like it.
- 40 IRE is about half a stop below middle grey for Rec. 709, give or take.
- The crow chart does not crush the blacks or blow out the whites, though it looks like it in the waveform because I’ve included white and black as chips in the chart.
How do you create the crow chart?
It’s easy, and you can do it in Photoshop in five minutes. The sequence of patches are as follows:
- #ffffff – true white
- $808080 – the thin patch in the middle, 50 IRE for full swing
- #777777 – middle grey for sRGB or the legal range, approximately
- #6e6e6e – the little marker
- #666666 – our hero
- #000000 – true black
Please create your own chart. It’s easy and you only have to do it once. The chart can teach you a lot about working with the film look, and I’ve only scratched the surface with this video.
What do you think? Is this helpful in creating your own unique film looks without any effort?