11 February 2010 - 21:41#16: Apply a Secondary Color Correction in Media Composer

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In this episode, we’ll create a secondary color correction in Avid Media Composer.

Secondary color correction is applying one correction to the image as a whole, but a different correction to a specific portion of the image. This can be necessary in a lot of situations, mostly when you need a different treatment of skin tones compared to the rest of your image.

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If you really want to learn about color correction, I strongly recommend Steve Hullfish’s “The Art and Technique of Digital Color Correction”

(Disclaimer: Purchasing the book from the link above will make me filthy rich. If you don’t want to make me go all bourgeois on you, buy the book from somewhere else. But buy it.)


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  • Andi

    Hi Christian, another great and clear tutorial, congrats! As someone fairly new to the whole colour correction and effects side of Avid could you explain a little more about what you mean by garbage matte and how you would achieve this. I take it you mean clearing up some of the areas where the correction isn't working too well? Thanks again for taking the time to create these tutorials, they're the best I've found!

  • avidscreencast

    Hi Andi,

    a garbage matte is basically a mask that confines the area that a key
    is applied to to a smaller portion of the image.

    Think about a shot with two people. One of them looks alright, while
    the other one's face has a color-tint to it.

    If you do a secondary color correction on the wrong face, chances are
    you will affect the correct face as well (because the may be not that
    different in color, so the key is applied to both of them).

    That is, of course, undesirable. So you would create a mask around the
    face you want to correct, so the secondary color correction is applied
    only the portion of the image that has that face in it.

    In the BCC Correct Selected, you have that masking capability built
    into the effect (Turn on Pixel Chooser and use the Region Settings).

    With Spectramatte, you can crop the area that the effect is applied
    to, which gives you limited masking capabilities, and you can soften
    the crop borders by promoting the Spectramatte Effect to 3D, turning
    on the Border and softening it.

    If you need a more specific Garbage Matte and maybe need to track it
    to a moving object, you can add an Animatte (basically a mask you can
    draw) to confine the other key to a specific location.

    Hope that clears things up for you, ask away if I didn't explain this
    well enough,

  • Thank you for your great tutorials. Im looking forward to the next one.

    Bård, Norway

  • Dario Caamau00f1o

    HI, great tutorial. I made Secondary CC with u00a0two layers and paint effect, where I select and area and apply a CC with a mask. I think that is usefull when you have a warm person and a blue background like a storm day. Congrats for the page, Dario from Argentina.

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