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How to Color Correct in Adobe Premiere Pro For Beginners

Lesson 7 of 14

Understanding Scopes


How to Color Correct in Adobe Premiere Pro For Beginners

Lesson 7 of 14

Understanding Scopes


Lesson Info

Understanding Scopes

A little slide deck here, understanding scopes. Look at this, it's all pretty, I will zoom in as we need to. So this is a nice image, it's Shanghai at night. Shot with this at 4k and it's relatively properly balanced. But I wanna really talk about what's on the scope. What are these four scopes? And I wanna show you in Premiere how you do this. So first of all, remember, for those who came in late, we switch from the editing profile to the color profile which brings our Lumetri color panel over here. And it may look like this when you switch. But there is a panel here called Lumetri scopes. And the first time you open these, they may not look like this. I have four scopes open, if you right click on this or control click on this, you can actually ... you may only have a single scope, one of this individual scopes. Let's go here, it's probably ... This, your waveform. So there's four scopes that we're gonna be talking about and we use to color correct. And they each give us different in...

formation about our image to allow us to make things neutral. So this is a waveform and it actually represents the luminance values of an image. I'm gonna go ahead and make this black and white because I like my waveforms to be black and white. This is breaking it up into the different red green and blue color spaces. But what I really want is I wanna see, you know, what's bright and what's dark. And if you look at this image and you look at this scope, think of this as being painted left to right that this is what's on the very left of the screen. And these are the luminance values of what's on the left of the screen. So for instance, I have darkness here that's probably, that area right here, I wanna make sure that this is the ... It's fitting on the screen, let's make sure, set the frame size, yup we're good. So, you know it's mostly a dark scene. So I mostly have a color stuff here. And there's the bright lights, they're kinda, I can see the buildings as we move left to right. Probably buried in here is the ship which has some brightness. So this is telling me my black and white levels from left to right on the screen. It will look good at a couple of other images. Then, you can see how that appears. You want your colors, or you want your luminance levels to be as low as zero, never below, okay. And never above a 100. Anything above 100, you're gonna be losing your detail. Anything below zero, or actually, if you start seeing this just get really crushed down here, you lose all the detail in your blacks. Okay, so, here we have an xxx because it's mostly night. You kinda can see there is some of the bright lights of the buildings and it just has a lot of black information in it. And so that is our waveform. I'm gonna go ahead and jump to another image here. As a matter of fact, I'm gonna go ahead and grab another image and throw it on here. Let me go ahead, jump there, shift one will give me my project. That is my project. Okay, let's pick a nice couple balanced images here. This Force Touchpad's a killer. Okay, let's take a look at some of these other images. There we go. Hit the backslash key. Now, remind me to hit undo cause I just completely overwrote my entire line of things that I'll be working with. You like that, in my haste and speed. okay, select all of these, make sure they fit. These are some tricks we learned in the other classes. So ... This is a relatively properly balanced image. Okay, we have some areas that it could be a little bit darker if I bring down my black levels. It might seem that will be a little be a little richer. My whites, the sky is pretty good. I can see that most of the information is kinda balanced to this is the contrast. So I can see, and you can see from the image. It's pretty close out of the gate. It's not dealing with color information at all. If we go over to one of these other images, this is pretty blown out. Okay, there is no blacks here at all. You can see that we have a little bit of a brighter area here, it's right there. I don't even get close to zero. So I would wanna actually take this image and add some more blacks. I wanna bring down my luminance levels in the blacks. And that's gonna make that image pop a little bit more. It does get close to a 100 so that's not bad. You can also see it's washed up but we'll look at that in some other scopes. And again, this is another image and if we look at this, do you see how narrow this is? This is a low contrast image. You can see from there, it's a low contrast image. But also your scope tells you that. In other words, the dynamic range between the darkest area and the lightest area is not that great. So with good contrast, you wanna be up higher and down lower so that's in for me and we're only dealing with black and white, with the luminance level. This has nothing to do with the color and that's the waveform scope. Now, let's take a look at these images in another scope. I'm gonna look at it in the vector scope and let me turn off the waveforms so it's a ... This is nice and big so we can even make that a little bit bigger. So what the waveform, I'm sorry the vector scope does, is it tells you how saturated an image is. And you see these little targets here. You generally don't want your image to exceed that because then you're getting to a super saturated area. And it will start looking unnatural. You might start seeing banding. But this doesn't have a lot of color. But you will notice that it's pointing in this direction here. And if I look here, that's B for Blue, that's C for Cyan. It's telling me that not only is it not a lot of colors. But the propensity of color is towards the blue cast. So it's telling me that there's a lot of blue there. So if I wanted to balance this, I may wanna add a lot more yellow and red and green to the image. So this blob should normally be in the center. Now, there maybe instances where you do have a spike if somebody's wearing a bright red dress. You might have a blob in the center and a spike towards red. But this tells you saturation and color cast. So if we look at some of the other images here. This again, it's an image that's probably well balanced but not a lot of color. And if we go to our last image here. A lot more color information. You'll notice the water is kind of a blue green. So I have blobs here over in the blue green area. And my saturation is pretty good. So I can see a lot of information there. And we'll, when we're correcting some images, you'll actually see in the waveform as I add or remove contrast, add or remove saturation, change color cast will be using these scopes to get exactly neutral colors to start with and then start giving things a look. Let's take a look at other scopes. So that was the vector scope and this is also very useful. I wanna point this out. There's a line here at about minus 30 degrees. And remember we had the question of well, 70% skin tone, does it affect, you know, some people are darker, some people are lighter. That line right here is where you want skin tone or skin color to be for a person to be technically accurate. Let me get deeper into my rabbit hole of things that I have erased cause I erased my entire sequence, but that's okay. I like flying by the seat of my pants. Let me see if I can get a neutral color person here. Here we go, that's fairly neutral. Load this into our timeline, insert after. So here, we see that the bulk of the color is right along that line. She's wearing a red so I get a spike there from the red shirt. I have my scope there so that's, I'm at my scope, my color chart. So that's also throwing my color off but if I wanted to, then let me just go ahead and do a couple things here. I'm gonna throw and this is a great little trick and we'll be expanding upon this. If I go ahead and I throw a crop filter on it. Okay, I can isolate exactly the skin tone. Throw crop on this. Go to my effects controls. Where is my crop? There we go. I'm gonna click on the little icon there so I can manually do this on the screen. Crop right down just to our skin tone. Bet you all can see that really well, no I'll fix that. There we go. So now I have my skin tone and if you noticed, because we've isolated it on the scopes, that's pretty good, that's pretty natural skin tone. But what if the coloring was off? What if it was more blue? Okay, we can say that there's a problem there. Okay, so that's how we start using that vector scope to make sure that skin tone is the proper color. So, it is along that vector and the other thing is saturation so if you notice, if you look at the picture, if I desaturate your face, that gets smaller. And if I add saturation, it starts to punch. And if I over saturate, which it won't let me do too much. It starts looking awful when I'm exceeding beyond here. So that's really a very key line. So that's what you use the vector scope. It let's you look at color casts. And it lets you also where skin tone should be. And one of the biggest tricks that I want you to walk away with is that if you really want to correct for skin tone, put a crop filter on your shot and crop everything out other than the part of the person's face. Now, if I wanted to be real picky, I could go ahead and make sure I don't get the blue of the necklace and the red of the lipstick. Let me, by the way, go ahead and fix this saturation before it drives me crazy. And also in the crop filter, I apologize for what's gonna happen now to our model but there's a little button. A little zoom button in crop and what's really nice about that is it will blow it up to full screen. And then when I look at the scope, I really can see what I'm isolating. So I can say, "Yes, that skin tone is really good." So that's the second scope that we will be working with. Let me go ahead and temporarily turn off that wonderful crop. Back to normal again and my sky's blown out. That was a big challenge and you see here, I did use this color chart because then I can make sure it's balanced if I didn't have my camera set properly. Going back to our scope so we've looked at too. We've looked at the waveform which is a luminance. And we looked at our vector scope which is our chroma. Another very useful scope is the RGB Parade. And as you can see, I can have multiple scopes open at a time, I'm isolating these to individual ones. And what this allows me to do is think of RGB Parade as breaking up your luminance into the root red green and blue color space as in television works in RGB. If you're a photographer and you're doing a lot of print work, you're probably maybe using CMYK. There's always lab color. Television works in RGB, the signals are recorded in RGB. If you're working with a still photograph, convert it to RGB and everything will be good. So if I look at this image and this image is I think I did zoom this in a little bit. Here we go. And I did ... Let me go ahead and reset her motion, boom. So this was 4k and it's on a 2k. So, if I go ahead and I look at this in my scopes. It is pretty neutral but I have a little more red and that's because she has red on in her outfit. But if I go to one of these other scenes that might be a little bit off as a matter of fact, the scene I'm gonna go to. Let's see if I can go back to undo this enough ways. I'm gonna cheat and see if the history will help me. Yes, for those who are not aware of the history, there is a history tab that you can get to which allows you to go back to a certain point without having to hit undo undo undo which by the way is command or control Z. And for those people in America, it would be the letter Z. I'm gonna take a look at some of these elements. I'm gonna hit the backslash key so we see everything. So here I have a scene, a diving scene. And there is a little bit of a blue cast to this because we're underwater and you can see that here in my RGB Parade. Not a lot of red, what happens when you dive? If you're a scuba diver, if you're in the class or outside, you know as you go deeper, red light gets filtered out. That frequency of light and everything looks bluer. Now when you're underwater, your brain is pretty good at white balancing. If you take pictures, you look at all your pictures and they're like blue and flat and what not. That's because your brains weigh better than a lot of cameras. So you know, if I were to color balance this and I use let's say, it's actually pretty good. Cause it actually was a lot worse than this. But if I went here and I said, "Okay, lets go boom." See it's nasty. This is why I don't like automatic. Let's reset that. Just made that ugly in just more ways than anybody should believe. So actually, not, I'm glad I did this. Because what happen is, I tried to do an automatic white balance. So it automatically said, "Oh, I need to add more red to compensate for all that blue. It doesn't know I'm underwater. And what did it do? It actually made the image pretty ugly. Not as ugly as on my computer because that screen is calibrated where my computer is calibrated to that screen. So you can see with and without. So, little nuance there. So that's what that is used for. And then the fourth scope, we have our vector scope, histogram, waveform, and we also can use our Histogram. Histogram and a lot of you who are photographers are familiar with this except you use to seeing it from left to right instead of bottom to top. Basically tells you the contrast of your image. And I'm gonna look at my histogram if I can as a black and white. Don't know if they let me do that on this. We won't worry about that. So this actually is kinda like a balanced image but if I go ahead and I look at some of those really ugly images that I had before, and hit shift one to just jump back here. Bring that full screen. Grab and look at some of my wonderfully ugly media. There's a lovely shot here. And then go ahead and take that. Bring that into the end, hit the period key. I look at this in my Histogram, you'll see that my dynamic range, you'll gonna be dealing with dynamic range. Cause there's not a lot of black area here. A nice histogram for a balance shot should be kinda like a nice even mountain. So that tells me that I have like most of my color, most of my information is in the middle but I do have some nice bright whites and some nice rich blacks. So this is a little washed out. If I look at the same one using my waveform. You can see, again, a very little contrast image. So, those are the four scopes that you work with. And that we will work with. As a matter of fact we'll work with this shot before the break just so you can get an idea of some of the basic corrections you can do. But generally, I stick to my waveform first and then I usually use my vectorscope to make sure my color cast is good and the RGB parade. The Histogram sometimes I use that, I use that more when I'm in Photoshop. I've used it with other non-linear systems when I didn't have all these other great scopes. But those are the big three but sometimes I will take a quick peek at the Histogram just to make sure that it is technically balanced. And as you can see again, as we look left and right. You know, it's kinda washed out but I see some spikes here. It's almost like you can see these building here and you have that really bright reflection there. So that's what's happening. And it's something to keep in mind is that when you're color balancing and you're working with the luminance of a shot, you might have a situation where if I make this properly bright, this may blow out. And I may just have to accept that because I don't want to necessarily balance for, you know, a glint or a highlight at the expense of the rest of the shot. And I can always just, you know, truncated. So that, yup, that piece is blown out but everything else is balanced. If there is information there, I could even go to my secondary color correction and grab that luminance level and create a mask and bring down light there. But don't think that you know I can't go above that. So I'm stuck down here for my image, okay.

Class Description

Take the mystery out of color correction in Adobe® Premiere Pro. Led by Abba Shapiro, this course will show beginners how to use Premiere’s powerful Lumetri Color Effects panel. He’ll show you basic and a few advanced color correction techniques. You’ll learn how to read and use Premiere’s Video Scopes to better judge and correct your video; as well as how to use Premiere’s pre-installed looks, and create looks of your own, to stylize your video.

This course covers:

  • Understanding Color And Contrast
  • Reading Video Scopes
  • Basic Color Correction Techniques
  • How to use curves for fine-tune adjustments
  • Using the hue/saturation wheel
  • Legacy Color Effects
  • Creating A Look

Abba will show how to use masks to isolate your corrections to specific parts of an image and even put these corrections into motion with Premiere’s keyframing and automated tracker tools.

Whether you need to fix the color in a shot, match the colors between two shots, or give your video an overall look - having a deep knowledge of Premiere’s color tools will allow you to get the job done and done right.


Adobe Premiere Pro CC 2017


Jason Acuna

I've been filming/editing language learning videos recently and thought "The free tutorials on YouTube are cool, but I wish I could pay an expert to just clearly explain white balance/color correction to me. How to confidently read the scopes, etc". Lo and behold, a few days later this course appears out of nowhere! It delivered all the basic stuff I wanted, clearly explained. I particularly liked the encouraging advice - if you get 95% there (regarding getting the 'perfect' balance), be happy with that 95% and keep moving forward! Thank you!

Olivia Preston

This class was well organized and Abba explains the lessons in a friendly, easy to understand way. It's obvious he enjoys teaching.