I only really got into color grading last year properly when DaVinci Resolve 9 was released. Until then (beyond Magic Bullet Looks) I'd found it a little intimidating. But When Blackmagic Design began offering DaVinci Resolve Lite for free I delved in.
Now if you are new to my site then I have already created a bunch of 'get started' video tutorials on DaVinci Resolve so if you want it check them out they are over here. I'll also be sharing with you exactly how I used DaVinci Resolve to grade this short film ( in a separate post) but first I want to talk about using the powerful built in tools of Final Cut Pro X. At my Advanced Cinematic Documentary Class in NYC which was held at Abel Cine, recently we made a short documentary prolfile.
Part of the class involves the attendees shooting a Video profile or Mini-Documentary. The focus is always on working quickly and within a short time frame, largely because this is how most shoots happen out in the real world and so learning how to make quick editorial and creative decisions is what it's all about.
Here's the finished edit that was created for the class then we'll delve into how I graded it using firstly the color tools within Final Cut Pro X (FCP X) then taking it further in Davinci Resolve 9.
The approach we use in all of my classes is that you bring whatever camera you own or use and we integrate all of those into the class and the film. The above film was shot using Canon C300, Canon C100, Canon 5D Mark II Blackmagic Cinema Camera, and Sony NEX 5N.... so quite a mixture of formats and without color grading they would all look very different.
So the first step in any grade is to balance all of the cameras using what we call a first pass correction or a primary grade. In this example I'll take you through using the Color tools in FCPX.
In the next blog post tutorial I'll take the same film and put it through a Davinci Basic correction.
Make sure you sign up too keep notified