October Update

So it’s been an interesting few weeks, It seems like I’ve been saying that a lot and I keep thinking of that old Chinese curse “may you live in interesting times” but it is none the less true. Dublins gone back into lockdown and it looks like the rest of the country is going to follow but sure we’ll keep going the best we can. If they do shut everything down again I’ll be sure to be out with the drone.

Since my last update I’ve had two shoots assisting the lovely people at Tiny Ark, Submitted two projects to Tg4’s Ignite program, edited one promotional trailer, Finished editing a live gig for a band in Scotland (more on that later) and gotten back to work on my doc on the legacy of The Field “In The shadow of the Bull”.

The Ignite Scheme looks interesting. “The scheme is project-led, and will support the progression of the selected projects and their teams, through training that will focus on the development process of documentary, from inception to exhibition. The scheme will foster a new generation of non-fiction creative documentary talent from all over the island of Ireland to pursue their first or second feature, and to provide them with a platform to develop the spectrum of skills and knowledge required to succeed as a feature documentary filmmaker on an international level.” So it looks like the selected film makers will get much more out of it than just funding, fingers crossed we get at least one project in. Not sure what the notification date is.

Anyway one thing I have been very happy with lately is three new pieces of software I have been working with called Look Designer 2.0, Grain Lab and Colour Lab AI. I had mentioned in previous posts that I was doing grading courses taught by Dado Valentic and part of that course was we got to beta test these pieces of software. The first two are plugins for DaVinci Resolve while the third is a stand alone program and I would highly recommend them to anyone who does their own grading. Check out the link below for more information on them.

https://colourlab.ai/look-designer/

Three of the shots in these pictures (Taken from the promo for the Doc “Searching for Maria”) were shot on the Sony A7sii and three of them were shot on the RED Dragon. They were graded using Look Designer 2.0 emulating Kodak 5217 Vision 2 200T film stock printed on a 2398 Modern Negative.

I’ll be trying out Colour Lab AI on the next project I shoot so hopefully Covid won’t postpone it too long.

3D LUT and Look Design

Ok so today I am launching an updated website, Ive got a new logo which I’m much happier with but more importantly I’ve added a section to include a new service. Grading, 3D LUT and Look design

So what does this mean. I’ve decided I’m going to open up some of the work I do on my own Cinematography to the public, if they want to avail of it. These days colour management is so important and with budget and time constraints it can easily get swept aside but colour effects how your clients and viewers perceive and feel about your work. This applies to all audio visual projects from features to adverts, music videos, docs, anything.

All cameras have a ‘look’ or ‘LUT’ (look up table) that they apply to the footage they shoot. It’s one of the reasons people will argue for one camera over another. However the majority of cameras these days give you the ability to shoot in RAW which is a flat image with no ‘look’ on it, the reason people shoot in Raw is because it gives you more options in post including more ability to control the look of the image. You don’t want your end product to look like everyone else’s.

A Show LUT is a single LUT designed to control the look of a film, TV show or whatever project you are doing. It is used on set to monitor the colour and look of your production and insure your look is consistent. It is then used in post as the basis for your grade.

For Camera people there are plenty of LUT packs that you can buy out there but they’re generally a ‘one size fits all’, they tend to not give you really good film stock emulation or truly get the look you want. I can design custom LUTS based on the camera you are shooting on and catered specifically to the look you want.

The way this process works is that you will come to me looking for a look, LUT or colour space designed for your project. I will talk to you about the look you are going for we will discuss the tone and feel of the project, reference images and intended delivery.

I will then present it to you in the following format:

If you are at the point that you are just building your pitch or presentation these are a great addition to you look book.

Once we work out any tweaks or changes to the look I will then reissue this presentation along with the reference images and two .cube files, a 65 and a 33. (The 33 is for uploading to your camera and monitors for on set monitoring and the 65 is only for post as 65 is too big a file for on set monitoring but they are the same LUT)

It is important to have a LUT that is 100% correct because it needs to give you the look that you want without effecting the exposure of the camera.

This is a process I use for every project I shoot and it really does make a difference.

If you have any questions or queries email me at fionagraham@singlecellfilms.com