Published : 18th December 2010
I am shooting a project in a few weeks with the Red Mysterium X chip that will ultimately go to 35mm. It will be shown multiple times at our Film Festival in Milwaukee. The project is a black and white piece and my hope would be contrasty.
Last year our piece we did with the old Red chip turned out a bit too dark after the film out. This clip looks the way we wanted it too here. http://www.bluemoonlights.com/Sponsor_Trailer.html
Is it typical to try to send a brighter version to be transferred? I know that a test would be best, but we do this project every year for free for the festival so a test is out.
Any advice or tips about shooting Red and going to a film out would be helpful.
It's going to vary by who does the print and what printer they are using for the transfer. I've done film outs from red quite a bit and find it's always best to do a short (400') test first. And work with the lab to get it right.
NY, La, Ma
What gamma are you targeting in the colour grade? Rec709? Is this how your film recorder is set up? Does your monitoring LUT match your film recorder?
Director of Photography
Los Angeles, CA
Hook up with the lab direct, go there.
Show them on the monitor this is what it should look like. B&W should be easy.
Just settle on a colour space, then film out. Rec 709 or log.
If you provide a standard set of files, rec709 or log the Lab is should convert it properly.
Maybe Filmworkers Club and Astrolabs CHI can help you out?
LA, CA , USA
Graduate of University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh,WI Radio, Television and
Film B.S. degree
>>"If you provide a standard set of files, rec709 or log the Lab is should convert it properly."
Chan Chi YingDP HK
For any Film-Out process you must use a true profiled and calibrated display workflow, using a calibration system that will guarantee the look of any display is matched as perfectly as possible to the final film recording chain.
This is a standard calibration workflow for any good DI (grading) facility, and can also be implemented for on-set viewing, etc.
LightSpace CMS (which is software provided by Light Illusion - so I do have a vested interest - but the info associated with LightSpace is generic to any calibration requirements!) is such a calibration system.
For more info on the display calibration requirements for film-out recording see here http://www.lightillusion.com/cubebuilder.htm and the associated pages.
UK: +44 (0)7765 400 908
chi ying Chan said
Jeff Olm replied :
>>Avatar was rec 709?
Most 3D is still shot or mastered Rec 709. WISIWYG
My point is.
If you give a Lab a rec 709 HD SR 24FPS tape.
They should be able to put a global LUT on it and film it out. It should look OK.
>>"For any Film-Out process you must use a true profiled and calibrated
>>display workflow, using a calibration system that will guarantee the look of any display is matched >>as perfectly as possible to the final film recording chain."
With all due respect, there was a time when I did this, particularly pre-Cineon, when every VFX facility had their own working colour space, but I eventually came to the conclusion that it's much better NOT to try and chase the film recorder around the mulberry bush, but to instead work strictly to the standard, and insist that the output facility does the same.
That's what standards are for, after all.
Santa Monica, CA
Jeff Olm wrote:
>> They should be able to put a global LUT on it and film it out. It should look OK.
Sure, it could look OK, but, it might not look the same. Even though the film print colour gamut is wide, it is different from 709 and some colours will just not render.
An example of this is the movie Speed Racer - shot, I believe, on F23's with colour decisions made looking at 709 on crt monitors
The electronic projection of this picture is, as I understand it from someone who was part of the process, is closer to the DP/directors' intent than the film prints, which could not actually render some of those colours.
Of course, if all of your colour code values fall within both the film colorspace AND 709, it should be possible to create a transform lut that gets you there... but that is not a foregone conclusion.
I have had mixed results with grading material while viewing it through one or another post house's "print emulation lut." sometimes good... sometimes not so much.
Mark H. Weingartner
LA-based VFX DP/Supervisor
Not a colour scientist ... Not playing one on TV
>> ...eventually came to the conclusion that it's much better NOT to try and chase the film recorder >>around the mulberry bush, but to instead work strictly to the standard, and insist that the output >>facility does the same.
I agree, and I went through a similar epiphany. It is especially true when one is working with electronic originals, which seem to yield much better results, both in terms of manipulative capabilities and colour accuracy, in a pipeline that's designed for them as opposed to a Cineon derived film pipeline. If the displays being used for colour choices are properly set up to a standard targeted deliverable colour specification - say, P3 or In the case of video deliverables, Rec709 - and the lab chosen for the film recording is aware of that, the prints should be very representative of the colour choices made. Some labs can supply a gamut remap LUT that can allow a preview of any questionable colours and adjustment of them prior to film recording.
The bigger question is what the targeted primary deliverable is going to be going forward. I do believe that we're quickly approaching the end of the era when the film print is the primary deliverable and entering the age of the digital delivery, usually in the form of the DCDM/DCP, being the primary deliverable. This changes the need for LUTs at the colour grading level and replaces it with properly set up display devices that reflect the accepted standard, just as Tim pointed out.
Next Element by Deluxe
Sorry for the delay in replying - I only just saw the replies for some reason - got lost in cyberspace...
While it is true some labs have very good Rec709 to film print conversion processes, other don't.
The problem, as Mark H. alludes to, is that neither film print gamut or Rec709 is larger than the other - they overlap in some areas, and are outside one another in others. This means Rec709 can show some colour film can't, and vice-versa. So, to be totally accurate is not really possible.
This is why P3 can be a better colour space for grading, or XYZ...
And as Tim says, in an ideal world all labs should be capable of being on AIM, so a set of default calibrations should work anywhere in the world. The problem is I've yet to find many labs that are on AIM as well as they think, or that are as stable as they would like to be. And as you travel further
afield they tend to get worse.
But, notice I didn't mention anything about profiling the film LAB in my original message - just the digital display chain, based on an 'ideal' film lab.
I said this because the displays being used for DI grading work are also often not as accurate as the manufacturers would have you believe, again requiring LUTs to bring them back into accurate alignment.
And if the monitor you are using for colour work is not a high-end monitor, well...
LUTs are not always about matching to a specific film print at a given point in time, although that is exactly what the top grading facilities do - they run calibration loops multiple times per day so they are close as possible to lab as it drifts. But you really need to own the lab, or have a very good
relationship with one, to be able to do this without breaking the bank.
But I agree that film being the main deliverable, and therefore the target for calibration, is receding. But that doesn't make accurate calibration any less of an issue. Especially with on-set colour work growing in popularity. I'm always surprised just how poor most displays are when set to their
'default' colour gamut and gamma - regardless of what that default is.
The truth is you can never be too accurate when it comes to colour calibration.
UK: +44 (0)7765 400 908