Fixing VFX Colorspace Issues In A Problematic Pipeline

November 25, 2017

VFX colorspace issues are the last thing you need when you are on a tight deadline. Dan shares his experience solving issues like these.



In this insight, we are going to take a look at matching the cr2 camera raw files and the ProRes 444 files that have been through VFX and as a result have VFX Colorspace issues.

The Issue

The issue of color shifting when going through the VFX process is as old as Digital Grading itself.

In  the early days, things were converted from log and back again for Film out and now with video editing and grading being so accessible to people, it’s probably crazier than ever.

Our source material is Cr2 files which are a Canon RAW still format. Lots of latitude and options in post-production.

These files are also quite high resolution which meant that the people doing the VFX cleanup couldn’t work at native resolution.

A decision was made to work at 1920×1080 which is fine but what also happened is they rendered ProRes 4444 which is great except due to it being a still camera there was no log curve applied.

This meant that all the highlights and shadows on the VFX shots were slightly cropped. There was also a slight warm tint applied to the footage.

I initially didn’t think too much of the loss of quality but as I progressed through the grade I ran into more issues.

It’s a lot easier to describe in the form of video so let’s jump over to the video below.

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Homepage Forums Fixing VFX Colorspace Issues In A Problematic Pipeline

  • Stefan Weßling

    I also had heavy issues a CR2 files from a Canon camera on a project this summer.

    They were meant to amend a huge library of files living in an ACES project.

    I did not find a solid way to move the CR2 files into the Aces working color space.
    In the end I did a Rec7-like precorrection in Lightroom and rendered everything as DNG files bevor I continued working in Resolve

    Do you, or maybe someone from the community, see more elegant options to solve this?
    Because I think a proper colormanagement employing CR2 files would also have solved al lot of the issues you ran into three years ago (asuming a proper ACES management also at theVFX dpt.).

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