What is GAMMA? Colour Correction Advice!

When out capturing footage, how many of you use the 'Standard' picture style in your camera? Do you shoot 'Neutral', 'Cinestyle' or ever RAW? It is always interesting to find out, as the workflow and manipulation of the footage is different depending on your input video signal.. Did you burn in your brightness and contrast, or did you give enough dynamic range to push and pull your shadows and highlights when colour correcting and grading in post production? As I capture my footage on a Canon 60D, it records in compressed .MOV format, which is not great due to the compressed signal. However, by making your image 'flatter' or what looks like hazy and grey, you are able to add or remove detail that may have been baked in during acquisition.

A little case study for you, take my footage that I am working on currently. Here is a screenshot of a clip before I took it into Premiere Pro -


I then colour corrected or 'graded' the clip using a couple of the video effects built into Premiere Pro, namely the 'Luma Corrector' and 'Three Way Colour Corrector' to perform the basic exposure and colour balance corrections.

Where using the 'Luma Corrector' has its advantages over using the 'Brightness & Contrast' or 'RGB Curves' effects is that the 'Luma Corrector' allows you to adjust the Gamma level of the image. Gamma being a extra luma curve that is added to the image after the sensor captures the data which allows the image to be constantly correctly exposed when played back on old school CRT displays. Now, these displays are not so common these days, but it is still a standard practice to apply a gamma curve to the processed video signal.

The advantage of increasing or reducing the gamma using the 'Luma Corrector' is that it removes the 'flattened' or neutral look to the image, while still retaining a constant contrast, resulting in a sharp and nicely graded shot. Here is another shot of the Luma Corrector and Three Way Colour Corrector being used on the same clip as above -


I hope this example demonstrates the advantage of capturing your footage a neutral setting to get the most out of your final product!

The 2nd edit of GLF video is on its way!

Apologies for the recent silence on here, I have been busy in the edit suite working on the GLF video, and I got a few extra shots yesterday to finish it off. It is looking extremely good, and I am happy how it is coming on. As I'm using Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, I have the very useful Mercury playback engine so working with HD video clips and graphics is not a problem until I get into the grade, which is to come later.

Here's a quick snap of where things are at, and I'll be working on the sound mix and grade later on today and tomorrow!


Continuing the GLF Video Edit

I've been working on the GLF edit again today around Sams, I miss Glen in times like this :( I worked on a map graphic to display the various GLF schools, creating a pin-type graphic -


I also got the backing music for the video, so I'm now working on the first constructive edit (after all the faffing with footage I don't need!)

Been waiting for it to render in Premiere for the last 10 minutes, here is a quick shot!


More will be uploaded soon, but I'm making great progress!


Got 5 minutes?!! Please help me choose two songs from this list to use as the backing soundtrack to the GLF promotional conference video!! TRACK 1 - I Know You Wanna

TRACK 2 - How's It Going?

TRACK 3 - Teenage Love Dies

TRACK 4 - Monkey Dust

[contact-form][contact-field label='First Choice' type='name' required='1'/][contact-field label='Second Choice' type='name' required='1'/][/contact-form]

Why is music so important to your production?

As videographers come and go, especially those that focus more on the visuals rather than the audio aspect of production, some may not realize the importance of the sound that accompanies the visuals. It builds atmosphere, tension, and can play on many different emotions and feelings that is just not possible through visuals (hearing someone behind you for example). Remember, AUDIO is 50% of a final video or film, the other 50% is the VISUALS. Without good audio, your audiences perception of the recreated reality portrayed in the visuals becomes blurred as it is not realistic to hear naturally, think about it!

If you are working on a production where you know the quality of the audio or visuals will be compromised, then have a back up plan! I shoot all the time on my Canon 60D, DSLR's having notoriously terrible in built microphones so I overcome this in ENG situations by using a RODE Videomic, which does the job. However, for exceptionally clean and high quality audio recording an external mic+recorder device is crucial especially for talking heads! I used the Zoom H2 audio recorder to capture the sound externally, to then sync up in post.

A GREAT TIP!! If you are in a shooting situation that allows; set the camera and audio device recording and clap. This will create a spike in the audio waveform and will make it so much easier to sync up later on!

My reason for discussing; I'm currently choosing the accompanying music for the GLF conference video. I use a site called Audio Network to source most of my audio media as it has great creative commons uses and is reasonably priced too, as well as having such a vast array of production style music.

So far, to go with the up-beat and enthusiastic, youthful visuals I have chosen these two to go with the visuals; let me know what you think!

If You Wanna

How's It Going?

I look forward to hearing your thoughts on the music, and any similar production questions or issues you may be having!

GLF Promo Video Title is now complete!

I've been working on the title sequence for the GLF video; started in Photoshop to create the graphics (using the original GLF logo created by CleverBox as a template). I then imported the elements into After Effects to animate them, as well as adding background footage of the schools and students! Its uploading to Vimeo now so here is a screenshot from a draft render :) title

Thank you very much Sam for sending over the fonts!

I'll post a link up to the video very soon, or just keep updated on my Facebook or Twitter or LinkedIn or even my Website!

What's all this talk about work?!

Yep, lots of work talk today as I had a meeting at Glyn Technology School about producing a promotional video for the GLF schools conference! I didn't go to Glyn to study many years ago, but I heard about their Media department from Glen.. So I wrote up a proposal offering workshops for media students interested in getting into the video and broadcasting industry! photo

That however is a side note to today's events! I'm just about to send off the project breakdown for the video, I've racked my brains and done a load of research into the primary and junior schools that are part of The Glyn Learning Foundation in the surrounding area, to include in the video. Fingers crossed it gets the go ahead as it will keep me busy for the next month!

The school is taking advantage of the awesome 10% discount I'm offering on all productions until the 15th of November so if you want to save then get in touch!