Colour Grading Craft Stories

Stories on the Art & Craft of Colour Grading

Although its relatively easy to find a wealth of technical and how-to information about colour grading online, finding articles on the art and craft of creating a look for a feature or TV show is a bit harder. Here are few that I’ve stumbled across lately.

Colour Grading Oblivion – The Technicolor blog has this interview with Colorist Mike Sowa about his work on the film, and collaborating with director Joseph Kosinski:

The Look of Oblivion started with the trailer. I sat with the director (Joe Kosinski) and the DP ( Claudio Miranda), who just won an Oscar for his work on Life of Pi, to set the Looks for the whole movie. It was a great way to set the different Looks we used right at the beginning. Of course, trailers tend to be a bit more saturated and higher in contrast than the movie, but those Looks set the tone.

 Colour Grading The Great Gatsby – Phil Sandberg posted this short write up about Colorist Adrian Hauser’s work on the film. It’s a great read with plenty of technical and artistic detail about the 5 months of work Cutting Edge spent on the project.

“Baz has an amazingly sensitive eye for color detail, so a large part of the process was to set styles that retained these color nuances in low 3D cinema light levels, which can tend to bleach color from the screen and make things appear dingy. Baz’s Great Gatsby is a modern retelling of a classic tale and I believe the graded result is a hybrid between the look of classic cinema with its gorgeous color reproduction processes and recently matured digital cinema technology.”

Colour Grading The Great Gatsby

The last part of this grading craft stories comes from The Mixing Light blog, courtesy of Robbie Carman, which offers some sage advice about how best to work collaboratively with clients and directors. Its important to be able to strike a delicate balance of creative input and customer service.

My role, and I would argue your role as a colorist, is to not convince clients that your way is better than their way, but rather to interpret their vision and combine it with your own.

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