From Raw to Color Grade

The promo for the Joy album is nearing completion! I spent yesterday designing the graphics—or rather, I spent the day figuring out how to integrate the live footage with the CD artwork from the marketing department of IHOP-KC had designed. It took a little while, but eventually I came up with a good coloring and texture overlay that I applied to all of the footage.

Following up from my recent post about Color Correcting & Grading, here are a few screenshots of a shot that was corrected and then graded.

(Note: when making corrections, always reference your Video Scopes.)

Raw footage:

First thing I noticed is there seems to be a tinge of red in the footage. The image also seemed a little dark; nothing really pops.

Corrected footage:

I adjusted the blacks and whites to 0% and 100% respectively. I then bumped up the mids just a touch to make the image pop. Then I adjusted the white balance and nudged the hue of the blacks slightly toward green to get rid of the red tinge.

Graded footage:

The goal of the grade was to tint the footage to match the color scheme of the CD artwork (while retaining natural skin tones), and to also overlay a similar texture as the CD cover. The CD has a great textured look to it, and that’s something I really wanted to include in the video.

Remember, you want a clean image before you color grade. It’s like building a house—if your foundation is crooked, everything else will be as well.

So now the only thing to do is wait and see if the promo gets approved! I’ll post the final video when it’s released.

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