Entries in scottdw (11)


Star Wars vs Star Trek

Finished June 21, 2014

Here are some stills that show the process some of these shots went through where I did some relighting stuff. To make the Stormtroopers at the door match, I simulated the color and cadence of flashing that was going on in the dance shots. The mountains outside the window in another shot were too blue, and there was some relighting to do on another shot where they all appear at the door to the studio, but the lights are supposed to be out. The last one from during the dancing shows some dynamic highlight bursting I pulled and tracked to the camera movements in a few shots. Anyway you can click through these and see what I'm talking about.

General before and after stills:


VooRay - Camsur Philippines

Finished June 4th, 2014

There's some good examples in this one of hue bending GoPro footage underwater to get better skintones and more vibrance overall.

Before and After Stills


The World's Most Powerful Gum

Finished March 24th, 2014


Kitten and Puppy Air

My friend Scott Winn made a video earlier with kittens flying through the air with capes on. He revisited the subject this last summer, this time with puppies as well. He's posted a making of video lest anyone fear the mistreatment of small animals. From what I've heard and seen it was a hoot to film. The little chewbacca puppy was my favorite shot of the bunch.


The footage was pretty flat here so I needed to pull the highlights and shadows with isolated selections to get a more dynamic image. The footage off the Phantom can fluctuate in color response more than other camera systems. I imagine anything shooting at 15,000 frames per second is going to do that though. At that speed the light and color can be hairline finicky. So grading super slow motion is never as simple as pasting one grade over everything. Each shot needs it's own custom work to pull it in line with the rest.

Another issue in this video was with raising the saturation and pulling the shadows and highlights away from each other introduced a lot of noise into the chroma channels. I graded this in Resolve 9. I wish it had come just a little later so I could have worked on it in version 10 which I'm running on now. In Resolve 10, the noise reduction tools are so much more powerful! I can now isolate noise reduction separating the chroma from the luma channels as well as choosing from spatial noise reduction which is essentially what was available in the earlier versions, nothing to sneeze at, or with my new favorite, temporal noise reduction. This allows resolve to analyze up to two frames ahead and behind each frame to adjust unwanted artifacts like noise right out of your picture! Between these two noise reduction methods you can also blend them in and out of each other. 

It may be too technical to explain without familiarity with the program. Basically, noise is history now.  


Splinter Cell Blacklist

 From Scott Winn, Christian Busath and a whole bunch of other really talented people you can see in the behind the scenes video, comes this little project that was just a kick to work on. 
I'll start with these exterior shots because relighting wide exterior shots is one of my favorite grades to build. The guys at CineChopper captured some beautiful stuff on this project. The first one here features our man, Sam Fisher walking up the middle of a bombed out village in Eastern Europe somewhere. It's evening and the sun is coming in at a good angle. I used a lot of tracked windows and selections to pump the focus toward Sam. There's also a selection on the bottom edge of the horizon only effecting the sky that brightens it up drawing your eye out into the distance. I've used the same technique to draw your eye out and across the shot in these others to get the focus out there on the horizon, watching for what's coming. As you click through these stills you'll see what I'm talking about.
There was some archival footage of the presidents being sworn in that needed a little adjustment to get the VHS tone consistent. But playing some of the other archival shots plain Jane just wasn't working. They needed some drama. So I pushed them to night.
The first close up shots of Sam Fisher needed to feel dangerous. To create the look I pulled out what little warmth was in the shot, and tracked windows to his face relighting it subtly to let one side if his face fall into shadow. There's even a small highlight to pump up the glint in his left eye. 
The opening shot was feeling a little too blue and black in my first grade. In all the reference images there was some contrasting color in the lights. So I went back in and added some yellow to the florescents to give it a less monochromatic feel. The final shot was this interrogation shot with fairly even lighting. I brought the light forward in the room and made it more sourcey to increase the dramatic feel, but also to get your attention over on them so his fall would be more jarring. There's a few windows there and some big shifts in the color to get it matching everything else. 
These last bunch of stills include the explosion which was shot simultaneously on a few different camera systems. Each type of sensor responds differently to what's in front of it. I believe this sequence of shots come from the Red Epic, Canon 5D mark iii, and the Phantom which always captures more green in the highlights than the others. To match them, I had to go in and isolate the highlights inside the blast and tilt them back so it wouldn't feel like each shot was from a different take or a different explosion.
 My mission with the rest of the shots in the sequence was to create a consistent cinematic look that would create a feeling of anticipation.