Colour Grading... The extra touch

The film featured here has the left hand side ungraded and looks exactly the way it was filmed. The right hand side of the screen has been colour graded...hopefully you can spot the difference!

So what is colour grading? Basically colour grading is like adding a filter in Instagram... we all have our favourites and I'm sure you do. With weddings it is no different, I like to give the films I shoot an extra little creative edge. I do this by shooting on the day using a picture profile setting on my camera that gives me a greater dynamic range - basically how it captures the range from light to dark. If you really want to, type 'S-Log 2' into a search engine and it will give you a geekier explanation!

Shooting in this profile allows me to have a greater control when colour grading and creating the perfect look for that particular section of the day. For example I tend to use a more richer and contrasting look for the daytime footage, giving the colours a lot deeper and vibrant style. For the evening footage or sections of detail, I try to use a slightly warmer and pastel like colour range, I feel this just lifts the atmosphere of the footage and compliments that stage of the day.

Colour grading is by no means for the faint hearted, and can be quite a frustrating process. If you have not filmed with the correct white balance or you have exposed the footage can open yourself up to a whole world of pain! I have experimented over the years with different cameras and settings and with the modern editing programmes colour grading is now more accessible and achievable. There is a vast amount of creative license to colour grading and it may not always be to your taste. Not a problem - it is quite simply like scrolling onto the next filter (give or take a few hours of tweaking!).

I edit using Premiere Pro Creative Cloud, which has an excellent colouring feature called Lumetri. I normally select a 'look' I like and then tweak the individual clips using that look. As you can imagine that can take some time, I normally capture between 400 - 600 clips per wedding.

I am always open to guidance to a certain look - it can be the difference to giving a film the 'WOW' factor!