Ok so this is one of those posts I may regret writing if my clients read it, as i have just found an incredible new tool for colourists and its called Colourlab.
So what is it? First I need to mention secret sauce. Ok, so secret sauce is basically something a colourist can acquire over time, essentially knowledge of how to construct a range of different contrast and palette settings that fit different moods, genres, styles, etc. Colourlab is essentially that knowledge....In a Davinci Resolve plug in. Not only does it offer you this, it also color manages everything for you, and for extra monies it will even convert your SDR work into HDR.
Its insane how good this plug in is! No wonder when you know that it is the brainchild of Dado Valentic, one of the most well known names in the world of colourists.
I recently used it to colour grade a documentary. It saved me a weeks worth of work and so many headaches in terms of finding the right contrast ratio to begin with. You simply select either F, L or S. F, being Filmic, S, being S-curve, and L being Low. You then have 5 flavours to chose from in your chosen contrast parameter.
So that pretty much nails your starting contrast setting. Then it offers you a palette choice, and this is when it gets really interesting, gone are the single letter choices, now we have Kodak, Fuji, Neutral, Major or Minor.
This really maps to a colourists train of thought...am I going filmic? or is it more real? Is it emotionally down, or emotionally up?
Once you are there, you are pretty much done, and thats good, because I'm running it on an old 2013 Imac and once its on, bloody hell does it slow you down. On the Mac Pro dustbin where I work it barely makes a blip, but trust me its a hungry plug-in for the up-and-coming or the enthusiast.
But this is the real genius, it allows you to export a LUT of the look its created, it even creates a folder for it and names it with useful descriptions such as F1-Kodak-2383-rec709.
The LUT barely uses any of my processing power at all. Total genius. Dado, has just saved me so much time, and energy in this little plug-in, cheers dude.
I don't work for them by the way, or get any commision whatsover, I just think this is a complete gem.
I'm working on a little film of how I used it in my last project, you will be able to see for yourselves how useful it is. I beta tested it for 5 months and it was good then, its mind blowing now. Head over to colourlab