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Color correction and color correction in Final Cut Pro X



Color correction and color correction are the techniques for adjusting the color of a video for a more balanced or stylistic look. Final Cut Pro X makes it relatively easy to do.

There are some differences between correction and grading. Color correction comes first and corrects the over- or under-saturated video to make the colors between the clips more uniform. Color grading is used to give your footage a clear appearance and to adjust the overall mood of the clip. However, they use the same tools for both techniques, so the process is similar.

If you do not have Final Cut, the same basic steps apply to any editing program that you use, but the user interface will look a little different as follows.

The Basics

In Final Cut, you'll do color correction and color correction over the swatch, which in Final Cut is just an effect like any other. It is used so often that Apple has given it a + 6 hotkey command. This will technically open the "Color Inspector" tool for each clip, but if you do not already have the color board effect in your clip, Final Cut automatically adds it. It's much easier to navigate Final Cut with hotkeys, and you'll find a complete list here. Alternatively, you can drag the effect to the clip and then click on it in the Inspector.

Once you have the effect turned on, the first window you see is the color register. There are also Saturation and Exposure tabs, and you can use Ctrl + Command + C, S, or E to navigate between them.

There are four sliders in each section for the main control, shadows, center tones, and highlights. The Master control changes the appearance of the entire clip at once, and the other sliders change the dark, gray, and light parts of the image one at a time.

If you move them horizontally, the color changes and they vertically change the intensity of the effect. If you move it below the center line, it will be negative. The same rules apply to the other tabs.

Using Regions for Master Color Correction

Eye-level color correction can be quite difficult as you make many small improvements that you may not even notice. The various Scope-Viewer help to take over and perfect these changes.

You can open Video Scopes by pressing Command + 7 or View> Show in Viewer> Video Scopes. The first interesting one is the vectorscope, which shows pixels by color (in which direction it points on the circle) and intensity (how far from the center).

The vectorscope is pretty useful for finding the average complementary color of your footage. Just pull the master color wheel around until it lands on the opposite side:

Ideally, you probably want your footage near the middle, but it all depends on your artistic preference.

You can change sections using the button in the top right corner

You can also customize the channels displayed by each oscilloscope so that, for example, the display of all colors is simplified to just the red one Show channel.

Using the Exposure to Normalize the Artwork

The Luma scope area is useful for adjusting the exposure of the clip. Normally, you want the lowest black levels of your footage to be zero and the whites 100%, but artistic preferences are also important here.

You can adjust shadows and lights individually on the Exposure tab.

You can now see that the tip of the clip is near 100 and the depths near 0. However, do not go too far as you start trimming and losing details. If the footage is not constant, you should adjust it throughout the video.

Using keyframes to customize your clip

As with Final Cut, you can use keyframes to customize the color palette. Keyframes save your settings at a specific time and switch between them, effectively animating your clip. You can add a new keyframe with the plus button next to the swatch. There is no hotkey for this, but you can cut, copy, and paste keyframes using the + Shift + X, C, or V keys.

Right-click on your clip and select "Show Video Animation" (or press Ctrl + V) so you can see the keyframes you are editing. They are hidden by default.

When you add a new keyframe, the current settings are copied to this keyframe, you can add a second keyframe, click on it in the timeline, and edit the settings, Final Cut automatically hides between settings for each one [19659009] Making local adjustments using shape and color masks

That's pretty simple, but it's hidden behind a menu. The rectangular button next to the Add Keyframe button opens the Mask menu. The first option is to design masks that allow you to make adjustments with an elliptical or rectangular mask. It may seem a little restrictive, but you can add multiple masks for more complicated objects.

The other option is color masks, which you can use in combination with form masks. You can use these to select a color in your footage and make adjustments to it. You can use the softness slider or additional color masks to capture a wider range of colors. For example, you could turn a red shirt into a blue one with some red color masks (and maybe some form masks if the scene is more red.)

You can also change the positions of these masks independently of the main color chart, as they have their own keyframes to have. Each of the masks also has controls to independently adjust the inside and outside of the masks.


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