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Get The Most Out of Your Photos With Capture One Pro 12

Lesson 24 of 48

Color Grading with the Color Balance Tool


Get The Most Out of Your Photos With Capture One Pro 12

Lesson 24 of 48

Color Grading with the Color Balance Tool


Lesson Info

Color Grading with the Color Balance Tool

briefly, we teach you a little bit with the collarbones tool with color grading. Let's look at this going, um, the color balance stories again, one of those things that works really nicely in combination with the layer because it allows you to again moderate it with the capacity slider and also combine it with a couple of other tools as well. So let's have a look at this example, first of all. So if we go to color balance talk, let's put the whoops. Let's put the color editor away. For now, bring up the color balance to make it look bigger. So, like we had the big, scary color target for the color editor. Just a simple grayscale wedge for the Taliban. It's tool just to go in a bit more details so you can see how it works. So if we go for the master tab and I click this and drag it anywhere, that gives us a color tin over the whole image. So it's affecting everything, So let's reset that double click anywhere to reset. If we go to three Way, which is shadows, mid tones and highlights ju...

st represented, there's one, then it's gonna be targeted specifically, as you can see that to the shadows and the mid tones only affects that central part. And then the highlights just on the end, like so, so very targeted to those particular ranges. You don't have any control over those ranges. It's kind of locked down. What the shadows, what the mid tones and what the highlight. So So, let's reset that. Oh, and of course, on the side you have the sliders, which also affect the density of those different ranges so you can see pretty easily where it becomes shadows, mid tones and highlights. But it blends really nicely in between the three as well. So let's reset that and drop this quiet over here. Let's go back to our friendly pop. Where is he? Friendly pup. When we get so, I tend to like to color grade on a layer because it just gives us a bit more flexibility. So let's reset the color grade and let's make a new filled layer because we want it toe happen on the entire image. Now, before I do anything, we're going to change the A pass ity down to around 70% boy, because when we do our color grade when we look at it, and we're always indecisive, indecisive. As humans, we can either increase the strength of our color grade or weaken. Decrease it without having to go back and miss with the tool. So let's bring out the color bones tool over here so we can see what's happening. So once again, it's a bit cold in general. Now you could say, Well, let's change the white balance you could, but this works equally as well. So let's warm it up in general on then, under shadows, mid tones and highlights we can to the typical cinematic grade cooler shadows and then warmer, mid tones and perhaps highlights as well. Let's just change the contrast ever so slightly so this will boost or darken those particular zones. So the nice thing is that as this is on a layer, let's drop this back over here, weaken, turn the layer on and off, like so so we can see what the color gray does. If I want to make it stronger, I can go in this direction. If I want to make it weaker, then I can go in this direction so it's really, really nice if you start off around 70% seems to be the sweet spot. This one. Did we color great Earlier? We did. So let's reset that. And what's also nice is to combine um, the color balance, too, with perhaps other tools as well. Now what I like to do is kind of make myself color grading tool tab so we can right click here and say, Add tool tab and we're gonna make a custom to tab. So we call it color grading, and we could choose our own symbol. So let's have Let's have this son sunrise like so and say, Add tab, This gives me a whole empty tab that we can add So I will right click and add the color balance, too. And I also add the players to put that up top think, and I also add the exposure tool like So now, if I had more screen space, he had a bigger screen. I could actually add additional color balance tools, and we could have, for example, to move this one up. We could have one set to shadow one, set to mid tones and highlights. If you have the screen real estate for that. So at home, I've got enough pixels on my monitor, if you like toe have layers, shadow mid tones highlights on an exposure toe. So but for this exercise, we just stick with three way so going back to this image. There's no color grade on it right now, but again, it's really nice to experiment on the layer. So if we make a new field layer and we call it color great like so start with around 70% and then we can think about how we want to grade this'd image. The benefit of having the exposure tool in here as well is that we can also play with saturation. So what I quite like to do is drop saturation down a bit. So we're getting on almost black and white, if you like, and then using the Color Bandits tool to sort of triple tone it in a way as well. So you can get some really nice effects just by playing around with the different sliders. And once again, if it's a bit too much or know enough, we can go up with the capacity or down with the capacity so we've gone from how it came with no color grading or the way to max color grading with that lower saturation. Or, of course, we can pick any spot in between a swell again. This tall is so simple to use, it's really easy. There's no reason why any of you, you know here or watching conscious pick up and start using this straightaway. But this combination of layers, color, balance and exposure works really nicely as well. I feel so we can get super nice looks. Now this is on a field layer. But of course, if you want to, you can also go for this by brushing it on as well. If you want to put it in particular places like we saw earlier. If we returned to our problem image right at the start, this one here. So don't forget the color bands till also works nicely as a means to correct for color ships in the particular zones. So in this case, if we reset that, we had this slight issue that it was getting a little bit too cold up in the corner so we could just push that up into the highlights. Now, if you were worried about it, affecting some other part of the image. If we had some brightness elsewhere, don't forget. Once again we could make a new layer. Let's do a linear ingredient mosque, and then we could just draw this down here like so. So that's just a mosque up in the sky. I might just make the fall off a bit harder, so let's do that to straighten it. Hold down shift. So now I can target my Kalabane. It's correction, really just in that zone, so I could be completely confident. It's no messing anything up, so we go to the opposite side, so that was a bit cold. So if we warm it up, then those two colors will just cancel out quite nicely. Once again. If it's too much, we could just take capacity down. That's how it looks on. MENA calls anywhere else in between, two around something like that. So collarbones tool for creative color grading also for doing those little fixes as well. Sometimes the shadows they can end up with color casts, especially long exposures or tricky lighting conditions. Concert photography. When you've got all kinds of different light sources, you can get weird shadows and weird highlights the color balance. Tolkien really just shift the balance easily around between those alrighty. Let's dio one more example, and then we'll open up for questions. So once again, our gentlemen here, I would start with a new filled layer, so over the whole image, take the capacity down to around 70. Play with my saturation a bit on. Then there's no reason why you can't combine. Master and three wait a swell. So let's go from or cooler look in this case. So let's cool down everything to some extent and then highlights a bit. We could take saturation down even more, and then we can go full color grading or no color grading or anywhere else in between. And for good measure, why not? Let's throw in a radio mosque just to focus on him really quick and easy to do something like that. So him to see the mosque let's drop down my exposure had it right there and a bit more feathering. That's what I really like about the radio mast that you could just always go back in and keep editing it. It's super simple. Okey click on reset. So that's before and after. I only took a couple of minutes to do. Okay, so in summary, before we look at the questions, remember the cholera editor. If we go back to that Colorado eater is all about picking a color and changing its appearance. Color, balance tool for your creative color grading and so on. And on those occasions where you need to fix costs in the shadows, mid tones and highlights. Both of these become infinitely more powerful when you combine them with layers. And as you saw with examples like this one with a simple mosque just on those areas doesn't have to be super accurate. No need for all time asking. You could really isolate where the edits are. And also for this example, as you saw on this example as well, very quick and easy to do. Okay, so questions from the audience, anything you guys would like to ask. No, I will make sense, Okay? And we have a couple from, ah, the web from Day G. Can you talk a bit about the accumulative toe? Hard words say it this time, effective stacking layers. What to watch out for avoid when to use it, so there isn't really any issue. To be honest, they will. They will have this additive effect. So let's try and illustrate by. If I make a new layer which we call the light in, let's make another layer which we call darken. So if we go to the light and layer and let's, um, had say, plus one and the dark and land we do minus one something like that. If I take my brush to and let's have a nice low flow to make it a bit softer, so light and lay we just want to brighten some areas up so I could brought in his hat a little bit so we can see before and after. If I then decided okay, I wanted Darken. Then I can do so. I mean, it's all non destructive. So the combination or orders that the layers come in doesn't really matter that mathematics works out. So if we had a layer off, you know, plus one a minus one and we stuck a mosque on each one, they would cancel each other out perfectly. So the mass does make sense in that respect. But don't worry, you don't have to think about. Is this going to destroy my image or call somewhere defect? Generally, it doesn't. It's fine to just stack them on top. Um, yeah, another from Daisy or Daisy? Can you clarify when we would need to use the amount? Sliders in the skin tone tool versus the uniformity? Yes, good question. Let's go back to Ah, Skin. Let's find this fella once more. Check. Was this the one we did? Skin tone? Yep. So it's a great question, because I appreciate it can get confusing. So let's bring up our Colorado toe. Nice and big, like So So the amount. Sliders. That's changing the appearance of the color much like in the advance toe. So on this layer, we've got ah, skin turned layer. Ah, I believe. Did we have a skin tonight? Yes, So if I press m so we can see our mask, there's our mosque, like so. So the amount slide is is changing the appearance of the color eso. If I wanted to lighten my picked color, I would do so here, so that makes everything brighter or darker, but it's really subtle. It's only a smaller amount. Same for saturation. If I wanted to increase saturation or de saturate my picked color or the range I should say, then I would use this slider. Here. You see, his skin gets slightly more saturated because it's very subtle or weaken de saturated. So the uniformity, sliders is all about creating a uniformity. So in this case, we had an issue where his nose was a bit red. So what we did was bump up the uniformity sliders to correct for their. And remember the way these work. This was the color that we picked. And as we drag the huse Lloyd it to the right, anything that is in this triangle or in the color range will get transformed to the pick color. So any colors that air sort of sitting up here in the spectrum get transformed to the pick color. Any colors that sit down here get transformed to the pick color. So, for example, if I wide in this range way out and we grab our picked color on, we move over here, we can give him any skin tone that that we wanna have. So it's really about transforming that skin tone into a union uniform amount now. Generally, it's used for obviously skin tones, but you can actually use the uniformity sliders for anything else. So if you had see which had some varying colors and you want to make it uniform, boom, you can do it. I've seen it used on a studio backdrop that was a bit uneven, so they used the skin tone toe to make the backdrop even as well. So even though it's called skin tone, you can use it for other stuff as well.

Class Description


  • Understand the interface and terminology in Capture One Pro 12
  • Setup your workspace and shortcuts to fit your habits
  • Build a workflow and editing strategy to save time and maximize results
  • Control the dynamics of color and texture with Capture One’s RAW conversion engine
  • Tackle a wide variety of image problems with photo editing
  • Learn the new features inside Capture One Pro 12
  • Master advanced image editing techniques
  • Shoot tethered photos -- and edit as you shoot


Capture One Pro 12 allows you to seamlessly capture, organize and edit your images all in one space. But the wide variety of tools and customization options in the photo editing program from Phase One can make the software a challenge for new users.

In this course, David Grover, a Capture One educator and expert, shows you how to overcome the initial hurdles of learning this program so you can hit the ground running. From basic techniques to advanced edits, you'll learn start-to-finish photo editing and asset management inside Capture One Pro 12.

Whether you are new to Capture One, are coming from an older version of the program, or are switching from another photo editor, you'll master everything from import to export. In this class, David shares everything from workflow to editing, exporting and even shooting tethered- all the while giving you helpful examples and visual aids to drive home each lesson. By the end of this intensive course, you’ll be ready to manage and edit your photos in one streamlined process.


  • Beginner and intermediate Capture One users
  • Photographers in need of a post-processing workflow that are working with one of the more than 500 compatible camera models
  • from Sony, Fujifilm, Nikon, Canon, Phase One, and others
  • Photographers who want to enhance RAW images and make them look extraordinary
  • Photographers incorporating tethered shooting into their process
  • Professional photographers switching from another editing program


Capture One Pro 12


As a member of the software team behind Capture One, David Grover is an expert on the ins and outs of Capture One Pro 12. But with experience running weekly webinars on the photo editing software, David is also a respected educator in the industry. Shooting since the age of 16, David is both a photographer and a photo editor. He lives in the UK with his wife and two children.


  1. Interface Overview

    Get acquainted with Capture One Pro with a quick overview of the program, including where the different controls and options are located. In the first half of the class, David walks through a quick start of the software before diving into the advanced tools.

  2. Customizing Your Workspace and Keyboard Shortcuts

    Capture One Pro offers full control of your workspace, allowing you to customize where the controls are situated. Learn how to design a workspace that works for you, along with tips for creating your own custom keyboard shortcuts. In this lesson, David also notes the differences between running the image editor on Mac and on a PC.

  3. Making Your First Catalog

    With a workspace in place, begin working with your images by creating your first catalog. Learn how to create an organized home for your photos in the editing software. Here, David also shares tips for organizing images and maximizing performance.

  4. Importing Your First Images

    Add your RAW files to the catalog in this lesson, picking up tricks for including subfolders and avoiding duplicate images. Work on asset management essentials like where to save files and renaming images.

  5. Virtual Organization

    Starting Capture One Pro with a basic organization scheme will save time and trouble in the long run. Pick up basics on getting images organized inside the imaging software -- and keeping them that way. Work with moving files, managing folders, finding images on the hard drive and more.

  6. Basic Tool Behavior

    Jump into image processing by learning how the different tools work. Pick up essentials like the hidden tools for returning the settings back to zero and reviewing the before and after of just a single adjustment. By starting with an understanding of the options that comes with each type of control, you'll be better poised to diving into the nitty-gritty of photo editing.

  7. Starting Approach to Editing

    What do you edit first? Establish a basic editing workflow and optimize both your time and the image quality. Dan shares tips on which edits to tackle first and why. Work with tools like exposure and white balance, then move into levels for adjusting shadows, mid-tones, and highlights.

  8. Next Level Editing

    Continue layering on adjustments. Learn the difference between the brightness slider and the exposure slider, then move to next level tools like saturation, clarity, contrast, the RGB curve, and the luminosity curve. See a comparison between similar tools to see the difference between each one.

  9. Color Tools Overview

    Fine-tune the colors in images using the color editor and color balance tools. Learn the difference between the two options and how to use each one. Then, move into specifics like the skin tone tool and adjusting specific colors.

  10. Basic Copy Paste Workflow

    Capture One Pro includes tools to help you avoid repetitive work. See how to copy the adjustments from one image to paste them onto the next. Then, adjust the default options on how the tool works.

  11. Basic Export

    Once you are finished with a basic edit, images need to be exported for sharing or printing. Navigate the different export options like file type, recipes, and more.

  12. Getting Started on an Edit

    Capture One is good for more than just quick edits -- get started in more advanced editing tools in the second segment of the class. In this lesson, discuss topics like how much editing is too much, planning the edit, and more.

  13. Adding Layers to Your Toolkit

    In Capture One Pro, layers allow you to apply local adjustments, or changes made only to a small portion of the image. Learn how to use separate layers and masks to fine-tune an image using the brush tools and other local adjustment options.

  14. Radial and Linear Gradients

    The linear and radial gradient masks allow for creating layer masks that follow a shape for local adjustments without painting on with a brush. Work with these two types of masks to fine-tune the image through more local adjustment options.

  15. Luminosity Masking

    The luminosity mask tool adjusts images based on light, applying the masked effect to just the shadows or highlights, for example. Master this more advanced local adjustment to fine-tune the photograph.

  16. More Advanced Layers

    Now that you know how to use layers for local adjustments, see them in action. In this lesson, David walks through layer adjustments on a handful of images to demonstrate the different possibilities of these tools.

  17. Removing Simple Objects and Local Adjustments

    Learn how to remove an object from a photograph inside Capture One Pro. Using the clone and heal layers, remove distractions from images with this toolset.

  18. Advanced Color Edits

    Head back into the color editor tool and build in advanced techniques. Learn how to select and adjust specific color ranges, including helpful shortcuts.

  19. Using the Color Range to Select Just What You Need

    Put those color tools in action on sample edits. In this lesson, David demonstrates how to use the color editor tool to adjust a single object, without affecting the rest of the image.

  20. Editing Colors in General

    Expand your color editing repertoire with several real-world samples. Learn how to use the color tools to enhance the sky in a landscape image or to remove distractions in street photography.

  21. Editing Skin Tones

    Capture One Pro breaks out skin tones into a dedicated tab to better help photo editors easily work with portraits. Find out how to correct skin color to remove redness and other imperfections.

  22. Combining Color Selections with Layers

    What if you have an image with two objects that have identical color, but you only want to adjust one of them? Fine-tune your color adjustments using layers to adjust only a single area of color.

  23. Creating Masks From the Color Editor

    The same selections that you make in the color editor can be converted into masks to adjust more than just the color in that area. Unlike the color tools, this technique can be used to make a selection that adjusts other elements, like sharpness, contrast, and clarity.

  24. Color Grading with the Color Balance Tool

    Get creative with color grading by using the color balance tool. See how the tool works, then see real-life examples of the technique in action. Build your own color grading station by adding a custom tab into the workflow.

  25. Intro to Second Day

    Ahead of a live shoot, get a jump start on what's next: tethered shooting and sessions.

  26. Session Overview

    Unlike a catalog, a session is designed to organize a single event. Learn how sessions are organized, how the software manages the files, how to create a new session and more.

  27. Tethered Basics

    If you've never shot with a tether before, there are a few basics you need to know first. In this lesson, David shares beginner's tips on connecting the camera and computer for a tethered session. Then, see the camera and software prepped for the tether live.

  28. Setting Up Simple Sessions and Setting Naming Conventions

    Tethered sessions do not need to be organized into a single folder. Learn how to separate images into folders as you shoot and how to create a custom file name.

  29. Controlling the Camera

    Adjust camera options directly inside Capture One Pro. Here, David shows how to customize the tethered workspace, how to connect the camera, and how to remotely adjust camera settings.

  30. Handling Next Capture Adjustments

    Start shooting from inside Capture One, then learn how to make adjustments that will apply to all the subsequent photographs. Explore advanced options for tethered shooting.

  31. Using Live View Focusing and Overlay

    See what your camera sees while working remotely using Live View. In this lesson, David shares how to use the Live View feature, along with the Overlay option when working with composites or images with text.

  32. Selecting Images and Using Smart Albums

    With the tethered shooting session finished, choose the images from the live shoot using tools like color tags and ratings. Then, work with filtering options and smart albums.

  33. Saving a Session Template

    Starting a new tethered shoot doesn't necessarily mean starting everything over from scratch. Learn how to save a session template so you can easily re-use that organization scheme.

  34. Overview of Process Recipes

    Process recipes make exporting simple. Build your own process recipes for working with image files inside Capture One.

  35. Tokens Overview

    In Capture One Pro, tokens help organize images with metadata and keywords. Learn how to use tokens to create custom file names based on factors like when the image was shot. Use tokens to save images in specific folders based on their color tag or rating, rather than doing multiple exports.

  36. A Simple Round Trip

    Capture One Pro plays well with other image editors. Learn how to take a photo out of Capture One and into Adobe Photoshop or other programs, then bring the file back into the catalog. Work with a PSD file inside Capture One.

  37. Sharpening Workflow

    Sharpening can be adjusted in three different ways in Capture One. In this lesson, work with lens corrections to apply specific sharpening algorithms, sharpening sliders, and sharpening at the export.

  38. Creating a Recipe for Web Output

    Quickly share files online by creating your own recipe for exporting images. David walks through the options and some of the best settings for prepping images for the web as well as how to preview what the file will look like compressed.

  39. Selecting with a File Name List

    Design a process recipe for uploading to cloud storage and adding a watermark. Then, learn how to easily select images based on a list of filenames, such as when a client sends you a list of the photos that they like.

  40. Using Plugins and Sharing to Clients with PRODIBI

    Plugins can expand Capture One's capabilities. In this lesson, lean how to install plugins and how to use the PRODIBI option for online proofing and galleries.

  41. Image Review 1 - Sometimes Simple Works!

    In the final segment of the course, walk through full edits for various types of shots. In the first set, work with an image that needs just a few basic adjustments.

  42. Image 2 - Radial or Gradient Masks, Object Removal

    Continue perfecting real, RAW images with this pet shot. Work with a radial gradient mask, apply selective sharpening, and more.

  43. Image 3 - Keystone Tool and Aspect Ratio

    Correct perspective on architectural images using the Keystone tool. Then work with structural adjustments, lens corrections, and other adjustments.

  44. Image 4 - Using Styles in Capture One

    Work with styles to make quick adjustments to an entire image. Learn how to work with styles as a layer and further fine-tuning tips.

  45. Image 5 - Black and White

    Continue building your editing strategy and workflow and work with a black and white conversion. Customize the look of a black and white conversion and make monochrome-specific edits.

  46. Image 6 - Landscape

    Correct a landscape image, using tools common for the category like the Keystone tool, saturation, radial gradients, and more.

  47. Image 7 - Portrait

    Explore the tools for editing a portrait. Revisit skin tone adjustments, remove distractions and more in the edit for a casual portrait.

  48. Image 8 - Action in Lowlight

    Editing low light images is often a challenge -- see how to tackle this type of edit. Work with gradient masks, selective brightening, color grading and more. Finally, gain additional insight from student questions.



This is a superb course. David is an excellent teacher. I'm coming to the end of it and have learnt so much. I've been using the software for a year, self-learning as I went along. I had watched the odd David Grover video on YouTube, but never got much further in my understanding of the software. Capture One is brilliant software and to do it justice you need to learn it properly from an expert. Highly recommend this course if you want to produce professional results.


Excellent course and a very engaging speaker. If you are starting with Capture One 12, this is the best class to take. The lessons are presented and explained in an organized way that it shortens the learning curve. Thank you, David. Cheers!

Jino Lee

One of the best course I've purchased. Very helpful and I learned so much more with this course and in a short period of time, than all the official Capture One You Tube videos put together! Anyways David Grover is the same guy who does the Phase One C1 official YouTube videos, so there's no better person to conduct this course than him! Truly excellent and if you think you know all about C1 Pro 12 interface, wait till you watch this course.