Color Correction/Granding

Hey guys,

I was wondering if you guys have a determined process for color correcting and grading. What effects do you normally use? Any tricks that I should be aware of?

Thank you


  • kevin_nkevin_n Website User Posts: 1,934 Enthusiast
    edited April 2016


    You need to be more specific with your question. :P

    What is there that you want to achieve, because there's no right way to color correct, and color grade, it's all preference, or what you want your audience to feel when viewing your movie. 

    You should always shoot your movies in a flat profile, on my Canon 600D my picture settings are


    • Sharpness: All the way to the left
    • Contrast: All the way to the left
    • Saturation: Two notches to the left
    • Color tone: Default (0 - middle)

    When grading I actually use DaVinci Resolve, I have no purchased the HitFilm plugin for Express yet, but I will in the future, because I want to keep all my workflow in one program.

    I start with messing with the Blacks, Shadows, Highlights sliders to correct the image, then grading either curves or Three Way Color wheels which HitFilm and a lot of programs have, though I just happen to use DaVinci Resolve.

    I use masks, and I track the masks, because I found it's nearly impossible to expose for everything in a shot, and bringing up details in shadows if there's someone laying there for instance, is very important to me.

    Here are tutorials for HitFilm:

    Credit: HitFilm, Shiny Films, RocketJump Film School





  • FilmTechFilmTech Website User, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 388 Just Starting Out

    I have a bunch of color grading preset packs on my channel if you want to check them out. But if there is a specific look your going for tell me and I will try to help you achieve that look.

    Here are some of the packs.

    Here are some tutorials you might find useful.

  • kevin_nkevin_n Website User Posts: 1,934 Enthusiast

    Yeah @FilmTech I actually showed one of my friends how often Hollywood are using Teal and Orange. The result is now he notices it in every movie it's in, and I sort of ruined it for him. I love Hollywood's lack of imagination sometimes.

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,319 Ambassador

    There are literally very long books on the topic. Far more than can be covered here. 

    In general Color Correction is always first--this is attempting to equalize exposure, saturation and tone to achieve consistent color across all shots in the scene. Yes, you have to do every shot. 

    There is a rough-consensus work-ish flow. 


    0. Before you start, you have to look at all shots in a sequence, and decide which looks "best." Color Correct this shot first, then continue with all other shots, trying to match your "best."

    1. Denoise and or clean up any odd glitches. 

    2. Primary Color. Correction--things that effect the entire frame. This is where you adjust your shadow, mid and highlight tones, neutralize color casts and adjust Hue/Saturation. 
    3. Secondary/Spot/Color Correction. Targeted color correction to fix specific colors or areas, either using targeted tools or masks. This would also be where "relighting" happens. This is NOT creating "the look" or making

    Once all shots are graded you can move on to. 

    4. Add gradients, diffusion, and other effects that simulate filters on camera lenses 


    5. Add dirt, flares, vignettes and other things simulating glass-related things. 


    6. This is where you start adding filters and effects to sculpt the look and feel of the final film. 

    7. Film Grain
    8. Aspect Ratio

    9. Resize to final output, then sharpen. 

    As far as tools go, Hitfilm has tons of tools and many of them basically duplicate functionality. As an example, color casts can be removed with Levels Histogram, Curves, Color Wheels, Hue/Saturation, Color Balance, and that's not even getting into layer blending. Exposure and Contrast can be adjusted with Exposure, Levels, Curves, Gamma Shadows/Highlights, Crush Blacks and Whites, Color Wheels...

    Learn Curves first. It's not the easiest tool, but it's the most powerful. Use Photoshop or AE tutorials--Curves in Hitfilm do exactly the same thing in the same way. Look at VideoCopilot or Film Riot tutorials. When those guys do Color Correct you'll see Curves used more than any other effect. 

  • WetzTheManWetzTheMan Website User Posts: 2

     Hi I had a question and I'm not sure if it goes in this topic or not but I'm using hitfilm for gaming montages and there is a lot effects and a lot of different color gradings for different clips. So should I go through each little segment and make a comp shot for each one or should I render the entire thing to one video and then do all my compositing and grading after it renders?

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