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Quick Start to Capture One

Lesson 12 of 20

Color Tools Overview


Quick Start to Capture One

Lesson 12 of 20

Color Tools Overview


Lesson Info

Color Tools Overview

There's a whole bunch of color tools, white balance, that's kind of a color tool, but I don't think you'll find anything in white balance strange or unusual compared to what you're used to in Light Room Aperture, or other applications. It's simply two sliders, adjusting kelvin and tint. There's nothing I can really sort of say in any depth, that you need to know. It works just as it works in any other application as such. Now, if we're thinking about color tools, I'm gonna bring, we won't have enough screen size, to fit them both in on our resolution, but we have two color tools, which you can do extensive changes to an image with. One of them is the color editor, and the other one you say briefly a second ago is the color balance tool. So, I'll give you a brief overview of how both of these tools work, and if that picture interests, then the advance color tools class is where we dig into it much deeper. So, let's bring up a little nerdy picture for a second. So, this is a color rainbo...

w. So, it's the whole spectrum pretty much, going from one end to the other, and then just with a density sort of graduation from top to bottom, and it's sometimes good to look at charts like this. So, you can see exactly what the color editor is looking at, and then we look at it in context with real images such. So, the color editor is split into basic, advanced, and skin tone. Basic is simply that, and allows you to pretty much pick the existing color hues that you see here, and make some edits to them, but the scope that you can, if you like, adjust these, is much more limited compared to the advanced step. The reason why the basic one is there, cause it, if you cast your mind back to the introduction, when we spoke about the different versions, then Capture One Express for Sony, only has the basic tab. So, Pro and Pro for Sony have the advanced and skin tone tab. So, if we look at basic, and then we've got these various different color tones here. If we turn on this function, view selected color range, that would give you an idea of exactly what each of those color ranges are as we step through them, like so. So, they are basically the standard sort of sections as we go through the color spectrum as such. If you have the opportunity, I would always use the advanced tab. If we're in the basic tab, and we wanted to adjust the sort of, hues we're in here, then you'll see if I change saturation, you can see how it's editing like so. If we just switch to a different hue, the reds for example, and we change saturation, then you can see how it's editing, the color chart like so, but we only have these one, two, three, four, five, six, zones that we can edit, we can tweak them to some extent. See, how I can make it very skinny, or I can make it broader, but then it begins to interfere with next zone, and so on. So, we can do, sort of basic limited changes here, but it's nowhere near as powerful as the advanced color editor. So, if we grab our friendly fox once more, let's just check, let's bump up saturation a bit. So, how does the advanced color editor work in the simple way? When you first see it, everything's grayed out. I can't move anything. There's nothing happening on the color wheel. So, first of all, unlike the basic tab, where you have some pre-defined color zones, in the advanced tab you have to define the zones. So, you have to tell Capture One, I want to edit, this color, for example. So, if we grab the color picker here, and we click up here. Then you get a suggested color range, like so. So, just a suggestion. Now, we don't quite know what that color range is so again, if we turn on view selected color range, everything goes to monochrome, that is not part of our selection. So, now we get a really good visual idea of what color range is selected. If we want to, and we can bring the tool out to make it a bit bigger. If we want to, we can tweak the range of colors that we're gonna edit as well, by changing the parameters. So, if you need to creep into the neighboring colors, you can do so. If you need to make a really skinny selection, then we can do so, as well. If we turn this off, once we've done our selection, we can then say, well, I wanna lighten or darken change the saturation, there's no protection here. So, if you wanna have completely off the charts wild saturation, you can, but it's not like the saturation slider in the exposure tool, which is more like a vibrancy slider. The hue is simply a case of changing hue of the color by a maximum of 30 degrees. So, if you imagine, this little spot in the middle, if I zoom in, super zoom, that spot in the middle, that's the exact color tone, that you picked, and then the lines around it, that's the boundary or the range of colors that you're gonna edit, and the fuzziness around that boundary is the roll off into the neighboring colors. All of which, you can change. So, if we change the smoothness, you'll see that it gets a much harder cut off, and if we go smoothness to the right, we get a much broader color as such. So, a blend into the neighboring colors. If you wanna do further pics, then whoop, one too many, then we can do so, and then we can change the parameters of all those as well, but it allows you to be extremely specific, of the exact range of color, that you want to pick. It's a really powerful tool, like if we go here for example, say I'm gonna grab a different one, let's grab image that I know works, whoops, a little bit better. So, let's grab this image here. Let's reset, and really with regards to the precision elements of this tool, if we say pick the, let's pick the makeup up here, and say view color selected color range. Now, because it's kind of close to skin tone, you see we're picking up a little bit of skin tone as well, but if we drag out our color editor again, make it a bit larger, if we squeeze down our range, so notice, when I came away from here, that more of the image started to dip to monochrome. Cause we were restricting it's range, like so, and even more so, as I drop the smoothness down, we end up with a pretty good selection of just that makeup, without having to do any fancy masking, or perhaps taking it to Photoshop to do more masking there. We've done absolutely zero masking. We've just been really specific with our color range adjustment. Now, if I turn that off, and I just change the lightness, you can see it's a very targeted adjustment, just to that element. So, very powerful, working with the color editor to really nail down, exactly which parts of an image, that you can adjust, and don't think of the color editor, as oh, it's a tool where I must change one color from A to B, that's not really it's purpose. It's for changing the appearance of a color in a subtle way. So, that's tweaking the saturation, changing the density of it, for example, and adjusting the hue slightly. So, it's even great, just for killing off a distracting color in a street scene or something, like that, or just if we were doing this beauty shot, and the makeup tone wasn't quite right, we just need it, a bit more vibrant, we can do that with the color editor, without having to do any sort of additional Photoshop work at all as such. So, that's just a brief overview of the color editor as such. As I said, let's just go back to, brought me back over there. Go back to, this collection, dah, dah, dah, du like so, just a brilliant tool, and just remember those simple steps. Let's reset, take the color picker, decide on the color tone, that you wanna pick, check the color range, by ticking the box on and off, and then just making your changes with the sliders, like so. A lot of the time, you won't even have to touch the boundary, like the suggestion that Capture One gives you is pretty good. It's just if you have those tricky neighboring colors, that fall really close to each other on the spectrum, that's when you might have to start compressing down that range. Kay, now the second color tool, that we spoke about is, let's grab this image, from a friend of mine, has the best name of any photographer, John Wildgoose, which is a great name, which I'm sure gets him noticed. So, the color balance tool, which is not a tool like the color editor. So remember, the color editor is for picking a color, changing the appearance of it. The color balance tool is a influence, or an inspiration from the movie industry, where the process of color grading an image is a lot more common or apparent. So, if you look at raw movie footage, it's super flat. It has no color, it has no contrast. It's a moving raw file, and then you can, the color grader in the movie industry can pull out all that data from it, and apply the color grade. Once you start, once you know this, and you start looking at movie footage, and looking at the raw stuff, that the directors get, and then how it actually gets color graded, it's a really interesting process in something as stills photographers, we can learn from. Anybody can use this tool. It's super, super simple, and it opens up a whole wealth of color grading possibilities. So, what we mean by grading is simply applying a color tint to either the whole image, or the individual parts of the image, broken up by shadows, mid tones, highlights. So, we can think of all the tones, all the shadows, mid tones, highlights. So, the way the color balance tool is laid out is with the master color color wheel, like so, and then three way color wheel, which is the shadows, mid tones and highlights. So, if we start with the master, and I grab the central point, the closer, or the more I get to the edge of the circle, the stronger the color will be. So, this is really the same as putting a color filter in front of the lens at time of capture. So, if I wanted to warm up this entire image I could. If I wanted to cool down the entire image I could. Further you get to the outside, the stronger that tint is, double click anywhere, and we're back to zero. Three way divides that image into shadows, mid tones, highlights. So now, if we go to shadows, I could say, well, I wanna call off my shadows, but I wanna warm up my mid tones and highlights. It's as simple as that, and then don't forget, as you briefly saw earlier, if you don't wanna get involved in contrast sliders, you don't wanna get involved in using the curves tool, you can use these sliders to influence contrast too. So, if we wanted to make shadows darker, I could just pull this down, and the highlights lighter. I could go up, that's the same as giving us more contrast. If we went darker highlights, and lifted the shadows. Then that gives us a flatter image as such, but it's super powerful tool to be apply to apply a really nice sort of grade or edit without any knowledge of color mixing. So, you don't have to know, okay, if I mix red and blue together with this density, this gives me this color and so on. You don't have to know any of that, you simply use it as a visual tool. So, I want colder shadows, so I'm gonna go over here. If we option click our reset button, then we can see before and after, like so, and you can really put your own creative touch on this as well. What's also nice, if we bring up a exposure tool, like so, if we do a heavy dose of negative saturation, and make these even stronger, it kind of gives us another look as well, almost like a near black and white, with just a color tint. So, you can do black and white, with a little bit of toning, by using the color balance tool, and the negative saturation, in this aspect as well. If you haven't used the color balance tool, if you're in Capture One, and you've never used it, please, please give it a try, cause it gives you that wonderful additional color grade or balance to your image, have a look at what they do in the movie industry, have a look at the kind of color looks, that are prevalent in the movie industry, and you can translate that directly onto your still images. Any questions on color tools? Yeah, one question from Phil, wanting to know, when we we're looking at the picture of the woman, id there a way to extend the hue range, and replace the color of her makeup from yellow to purple? Ah, yes and no, you can with this sort of hack, I guess is the best way to describe it, let's go back. So, what you can do, and it's probably easier to do it in something else. I would think, sometimes it works, whoops, but what we can do is that you repeatedly pick, the same color, and do the same adjustment, obviously, we skinny down the range, so that we weren't affecting the skin as well, but you'll see if we keep picking the same one, then we eventually can transform a color. So, it's possible, you just have to do a bit more additional work.

Class Description

Whatever your current RAW converter or imaging software is, this course will help you make a smooth transition to Capture One and give your images a new look. Join David Grover, a Capture One educator and expert, as he shows you how to overcome the initial hurdles of learning a new program and hit the ground running.

In this class you’ll learn:

  • The interface and terminology Capture One uses
  • How to setup the workspace and shortcuts so they become familiar to you
  • The 10 most important things you need to know for everyday workflow and adjustment
  • How to make your images shine with Capture One’s RAW conversion engine

By the end of this class, you’ll be able to start importing your image into Capture One and create new and creative images!

Software Used: Capture One Pro 10


Juan Sebastián Echeverri

This class is a great introduction to Capture One. David covers the CO environment including the basics of tools, tool tabs, toolbar, cursor tools, action buttons, the viewer, and the browser. It includes some useful shortcuts and best practices for an efficient workflow.

Dan Donovan

A comprehensive overview of Capture One. David does a FANTASTIC job of getting you started with Capture One!


David is extremely well versed in CaptureOne Pro and he has the ability to share his knowledge in a way that is easy to follow and understand. My time in the audience was well spent, increasing my knowledge of CaptureOne basics. I would particularly recommend this class to anyone who is relatively new to CaptureOne or who is considering making CaptureOne part of their photo editing process.