Welcome to the very first Color Grading Breakdown Series post! The Color Grading Breakdown Series will consist of recurring posts featuring a short breakdown video of a single specific shot. A very brief text will accompany the breakdown video, but the idea here is not to elaborate too much or to dive too deep in color grading analysis. It is rather to inspire other colorists by showing the different layers of a grade or or simply for pure grading enjoyment.
So here it is, the first Color Grading Breakdown Series video:
Did I just use the soundtrack for Snakes on a Plane? Yes.
Color Grading Breakdown
This music video was shot in three long takes and then merged into a single one, therefore requiring a lot of keyframed color adjustments so that the grade would evolve overtime and look good in the different environments. The grading was done in Adobe After Effects, my software of choice for heavy keyframing duty.
An adjustment with 3 curves. The first one for the contrast and the 2 others for gamma and exposure.
Another adjustment layer with a curve. This time only for grading using the red, green and blue channel.
Double blended solid colors. A deep blue in classic color burn with a very low opacity and an orange in darken.
A custom vignette with a very soft edge to darken the sides of the frame.
Another custom vignette shaped around the talent with a curve inside to boost the midtones and highlights.
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Well, that’s it for the first post of the Color Grading Breakdown Series! I’ll try to release a new breakdown on a weekly basis, so subscribe or come back every week for a fresh new grading breakdown.
Watch the full music video here.