Color Warper 101 Part 1: Concepts and Interface Fundamentals

January 11, 2021

The new Color Warper in DaVinci Resolve 17 is very powerful, very accurate, but a bit complicated. In Part 1, learn this tool's fundamentals.

Day 11: 24 Insights in 24 Days New Year Marathon

Color Warper 101 Part 1: How does this new tool work, and what are the basic controls?

With the addition of the Color Warper in Resolve 17, colorists gain a powerful new way to target & manipulate specific hue & tonal ranges to create & refine dynamic looks.  Using new colorspace-aware math, under the hood, the tool simplifies complex color re-mapping tasks, creating smooth and consistent results.

While the interface for the Color Warper seems intuitive at first, there are a lot of nuances that must be mastered to accurately control its corrections.  In this new series, we get a close look at this tool’s interface, the different modes available to us, how it interacts with the project’s color management settings, using it to solve common real-world problems, and (of course) creating looks.

Project Setup, Basic Concepts & Interface

In this first installment of a new Insight series on the Color Warper we take a look at its key concepts & basic interface:

  • Setting up a color-managed project as the quickest way to getting good results from the Color Warper
  • The differences between the Hue-Sat & Chroma-Luma modes
  • Setting the mesh resolutions for greater precision
  • Basic tools (and reasoning) for pinning & unpinning control points

By the end of this Insight you’ll have a better idea of what the Color Warper is, how it works, and how to set it up for success.  In Part 2 we’ll take a more detailed look at the tools available for working with control points, and dive deeper into the Chroma-Luma mode.  Then in Part 3 we’ll put everything together, using the Color Warper to solve issues and create stylized images.

Comments & Questions

Please leave any questions or comments you have in the discussion below!  We’re looking forward to hearing how your experiments with the Color Warper go!

– Peder

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Homepage Forums Color Warper 101 Part 1: Concepts and Interface Fundamentals

  • Evan A

    Great insight!

  • Peder Morgenthaler

    Thanks! Things will get more exciting in parts 2 & 3… It’s really a great tool.

  • Jean Paul Sneider

    Worth pointing out that it breaks the 32bit float pipeline. Clipping beyond retrievable Highlights and shadows.

  • Hector A

    Good stuff. Will you also be explaining the controls on the bottom right of the interface? Axis angle, etc?

  • Pat Inhofer

    Yup. That’ll be in the next part of this series.

  • Peder Morgenthaler

    Thanks for pointing that out. I’ll find out more about that issue and address it in a later episode if necessary.

  • Peder Morgenthaler

    Thanks Hector! As Patrick mentioned, I’ll be covering those in the next Insight.

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