April 17, 2014, 03:31:15 PM

Author Topic: Camera Test: Need Advice, Marvels Cine, Lighting, Resolve Color Grading, etc...  (Read 2567 times)

cayenne

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Hello all,

This is likely a boring clip for anyone to watch, I was just doing this for myself to see if I could figure out better ways of lighting, and trying to use the flatter Marvels Cine 3.4, and along with that, roundtrip from FCPX to Davinci Resolve Lite.

The roundtripping isn't working great right now, xml problems, but I did just grade the raw footage and worked it that way.

I do know that I now need to get my CFL clamp lights, changed out to a color temp that more closely balances out the 'static' lights in the kitchen which are on track lights, and are halogens at about 2700K (clamp lights were 5000K).
I'm going to remedy that now, and that will help with the white balance.

But in looking through these clips, it appears that I had the BEST luck..when all things were equal, I set the exposure on the cameras light meter to about 2 stops under exposed?!?!  Everything else, using any of the flatter picture styles, seems to be over exposed even though the camera meter reading looks dead on center.

Any thoughts on that?

I was also testing out the ExpoDisc thing, that you put on the end of the camera, which essentially covers the lens with 18% grey, and you shot an shot through it (recommended that you do it from the targets POV back to where the camera will be, and this DOES seem to work best).  In the latter tests, you can definitely see when dong the Expodisc from the camera POV, the scene was VERY green.

Anyway, this was with my 5D3. The ExpoDisc for setting custom white balance, I color graded with Davinci Resolve Lite, and used FCPX as my NLE.

Lighting was as described above.

Again, this isn't artsy, not interesting..just me rambling about the settings on a camera test, but I'd appreciate input on the exposure, the color grading (I have each clip doing a split screen with out of camera on left and corrected on the right)....

I really want to be able to get the very high quality cinema look the 5D3 is  capable of, but so far, I don't think I seem to be able to put things together right, to get the picture as good (or hopefully better) than using the "normal" or "Neutral" settings on the camera.

So..please look and give me suggestions!!!

Again, thank you all so far for helping me to understand the camera and how to try to use it!!

cayenne

Test Footage: Marvels Cinestyle 3.4/Lighting Small | Large


Ps. Sorry for the confusion. Apparently, you can't embed VIMEO here...I wanted to show this in the 2.35:1 aspect ratio I edited it to, and YT added the black bars back in.

The vimeo URL for the 2.35:1 is  at this link:  https://vimeo.com/59782968
« Last Edit: February 17, 2013, 06:25:51 PM by cayenne »

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cayenne

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Well, just great.
My first attempt using vimeo..and video doesn't seem to load.

Anyone use vimeo before with a solution?  I can play it just fine directly from the site...I wanted to try them out so I could do the proper aspect ratio....

C

cayenne

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Hi All,

Ok, I found out vimeo can't be embedded here. ON the original post, I put the link to the vimeo verson with the 2.35:1 aspect ratio I created.  The youtube one embeds, but when uploading to them, they put the black bars back in on top and bottom.

Anyway, if anyone will give this a look after the technical problems I"ve had....I'd still appreciate comments on what I need to do about lighting, WB, color grading, and exposure (it seems under exposing per the meter on the camera seems to work best when using the flatter picture styles?

Thanks!

cayenne

AG

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I'm not going to go into a heap of detail here but from what i can see i can tell you from looking at your basic image that the biggest issue you are having is mixed colour temps of your lights.

Buy some Gels and then change your colour temp of all of your lights to be the same. (or replace the bulbs, but Gels are easier and probably cheaper)

Heres a basic tutorial http://www.videomaker.com/videonews/2011/08/11041-lighting-for-video-color-correction-gels

Once you do that you will see that your colours will be even and make it a hell of a lot easier to grade.

Secondly your uncorrected footage seems very in-camera graded and not flat.

You may want to try something such as Cinestyle and see how that compares for grading.
https://www.technicolorcinestyle.com

Lastly if you have an iPhone or similar download a light meter app https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/pocket-light-meter/id381698089?mt=8
It will help you get a more accurate light reading that trying to do it through the camera.
Yes, i shoot video on a DSLR.

cayenne

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I'm not going to go into a heap of detail here but from what i can see i can tell you from looking at your basic image that the biggest issue you are having is mixed colour temps of your lights.

Buy some Gels and then change your colour temp of all of your lights to be the same. (or replace the bulbs, but Gels are easier and probably cheaper)

Heres a basic tutorial http://www.videomaker.com/videonews/2011/08/11041-lighting-for-video-color-correction-gels

Once you do that you will see that your colours will be even and make it a hell of a lot easier to grade.

Secondly your uncorrected footage seems very in-camera graded and not flat.

You may want to try something such as Cinestyle and see how that compares for grading.
https://www.technicolorcinestyle.com

Lastly if you have an iPhone or similar download a light meter app https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/pocket-light-meter/id381698089?mt=8
It will help you get a more accurate light reading that trying to do it through the camera.


Thanks for the reply...and the links.
Yes, the mixed lighting is a HUGE problem.  This weekend, I bought new halogens for the kitchen flood lights...all 2700K. I bought new CFL bulbs for my clamp lights...also all 2700K. So, that should all match.

Interesting you mention the 'in camera' correction. I was shooting with the Marvels Cinestyle v 3.4. I too thought that would be flatter than it looked. I downloaded the Technicolor Cinestyle...but found that they now want you to pay for the LUT that is needed for it....and I've not been able to find the old free LUT anywhere on the internet yet (I still need to search on USENET).

But I was using a flat style....it is flatter than the manual settings I'd been using before, per suggestions from the list here. It is the Marvels Cinestyle 3.4, and is set just as it came from their site with all default settings. Is there some tuning people do off this to get it even flatter?

I'll do some more quick tests maybe this coming weekend once I have a chance to replace all the lights and get them to all match same color temp.

From looking at this footage, I"m still thinking I may need to underexpose by about 1-2 stops from the meter reading in the camera with the flat style in order to keep it from being overexposed.

Any other thoughts?

cayenne


Axilrod

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Hey Cayenne!  I'm about to go read the rest of your responses in this thread, but first off I think you should drop resolve from the equation.  I don't think there is anything you can do with it that you wouldn't be able to do with FCPX's built-in color correction and/or Magic Bullet Looks.  If DSLR video was 10-bit or 12-bit then maybe it would be worth having Resolve in the mix, but with 8-bit it's just overkill and only adds complexity to your workflow.
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Axilrod

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I agree with the other poster, mix lighting is a huge pain in the butt and flourescents are very unflattering.  Usually when I'm using daylight balanced LED's I'll set the WB to 5200-5500 (depends on the situation) and then use a 3200K litepanel for the hair light/kicker/backlight since it has a nice warm glow when the WB is at 5500k. 

Also, with DSLR's I generally end up going underexposed (relative to the in-camera meter) by usually almost a full stop.  You want to try to expose for highlights with these, and it's always better to underexpose than overexpose, since blown-out detail is incredibly difficult to recover with 8-bit compressed video.  But I can have a severely underexposed clip and make it look pretty damn good, but with even slightly overexposed stuff I can only hope to get it to acceptable at best. 
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cayenne

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Hey Cayenne!  I'm about to go read the rest of your responses in this thread, but first off I think you should drop resolve from the equation.  I don't think there is anything you can do with it that you wouldn't be able to do with FCPX's built-in color correction and/or Magic Bullet Looks.  If DSLR video was 10-bit or 12-bit then maybe it would be worth having Resolve in the mix, but with 8-bit it's just overkill and only adds complexity to your workflow.
I kind alike Resolve....when the workflow works, but mostly in that the controls on Resolve are much more intuitive to me for color correction, with the color dials, and the nodal workflow, I find it it easier to keep up with my different corrections.

I just can't seem to get the same control or at least "I" haven't figure it out with the slider controls on FCPX.  I also find the scopes to be a bit easier to see and work with on Resolve vs FCPX. For instance, after seeing a colorist describe how he was able to fix color balance by finding a black object on the parade scope, and correcting it, and doing the same with a white object on the scope and doing the same..that white balance would be set...I was able to do this much easier with the controls on Resolve vs FCPX.

I agree it is likely overkill for canon footage, but I find that I am more comfortable with the controls of Resolve than with FCPX.  But hey, I'm good to try to learn as many different paradigms as I can...so, when the xml from FCPX to Resolve and back breaks, I concentrate on doing it within FCPX. 

cayenne

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I agree with the other poster, mix lighting is a huge pain in the butt and flourescents are very unflattering.  Usually when I'm using daylight balanced LED's I'll set the WB to 5200-5500 (depends on the situation) and then use a 3200K litepanel for the hair light/kicker/backlight since it has a nice warm glow when the WB is at 5500k. 

Also, with DSLR's I generally end up going underexposed (relative to the in-camera meter) by usually almost a full stop.  You want to try to expose for highlights with these, and it's always better to underexpose than overexpose, since blown-out detail is incredibly difficult to recover with 8-bit compressed video.  But I can have a severely underexposed clip and make it look pretty damn good, but with even slightly overexposed stuff I can only hope to get it to acceptable at best.
Hey, thanks for all the input!!

I bought all new lights to try to use this weekend...alll color temp 2700K (this was pretty much my only choice on the track light halogen U10 lights....that I could match with CFLs for my clamp lights)....so, hopefully, the mixed lighting will be out of the equation.

One other question I have..once you get WB right...contract set.
What do you do to get colors to really pop? 

So far, when I get color correction set right for the basic stuff as above, I'm still not able to figure how to get the colors to pop as much and image to look as sharp as it seems to come out with the Canon preset 'normal' or default style.....

I'm wanting to shoot flat..and have my finished video to look better than the presets...but so far, is an uphill battle for me...

C

Dantana

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You might also try using an incident light meter to see what kind of readings you get. The reflected meter in your camera is taking a guess at what it thinks you want. An incident meter will give you the actual amount of light falling in a specific place in the scene. It's also helpful in setting up your lighting so you can get your ratios to your liking.
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cayenne

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You might also try using an incident light meter to see what kind of readings you get. The reflected meter in your camera is taking a guess at what it thinks you want. An incident meter will give you the actual amount of light falling in a specific place in the scene. It's also helpful in setting up your lighting so you can get your ratios to your liking.

Would you have a recommendation for a good bang for the buck  incident light meter?

Thanks!

c

Dantana

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I have always used Sekonics, though the models that I have used are fairly old and analog (L-28c, L-398), no chance to use them as flash meters for stills and not as convenient as the newer digital meters. Maybe someone else on the board can chime in on personal experience with their newer meters. I was looking at the L-308DC. Specs look good for around $275, but I haven't used it personally.

You might want to rent a meter just to try it out. There is a slight learning curve to setting exposure that way.
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