With all the articles about FCPX floating about the internet, it is nice to get back to the craft of what we do. Oliver Peters does exactly that with this informative article on color grading.
Having a picture of a vampire instead of an FCPX screengrab also helps! This informative video sweetening article by Oliver describes how shots were graded in two films depending on their location and editorial requirements. Really nice to read a well written piece after so many rushed articles full of speculation & froth.
Please read the full article over on Oliver's blog, here are his first two paragraphs.
Video “sweetening” is both a science and an art. To my way of thinking, Color correction is objective – evening out shot-to-shot consistency and adjusting for improper levels or color balance. Color gradingis subjective – giving a movie, show or commercial a “look”. Grading ranges from the simple enhancement of what the director of photography gave you – all the way to completely “relighting” a scene to radically alter the original image. Whenever you grade a project, the look you establish should always be in keeping with the story and the mood the director is trying to achieve. Color provides the subliminal cues that lead the audience deeper into the story.
Under the best of circumstances, the colorist is working as an extension of the director of photography and both are on the same page as the director. Frequently the DP will sit in on the grading session; however, there are many cases – especially in low budget projects – where the DP is no longer involved at that stage. In those circumstances, it is up to the colorist to properly guide the director to the final visual style.