Creating Looks in FCP X: Part 1

Creating Looks in FCP X: Part 1

April 22, 2015

After shot matching comes Look creation. This is Part 1 on how to create Looks in FCP X 10.2 without using 3rd party plug-ins.


How to create Looks in FCP X 10.2: Part 1

The Final Cut Pro X Desert Island Challenge: Part 8

We’ve expanded contrast and saturation. We’ve matched shots together. Now, it’s time to create our Look.

And we’re doing all this with nothing more than the FCP X base filter set

But we’re also doing this within the context of a professional color correction workflow. This means we work systematically through our ‘process’, add filters at each stage of the color correction process—allowing us to save our previous work if we (or our client) change our mind and now, at the Look creation stage, is when our hard work really bears fruit.

Look creation is MUCH easier if you’ve already done your ‘base’ corrections and shot matching

This is true even when, later in this series, we look at a heavy-duty look-creation package like Magic Bullet Looks. But for now, let’s start with what Final Cut Pro X gives in its core filter set. In this Insight, I’ll select one of the many, many, many Looks that ship with FCP X and then show you why I might use it for a reference but will generally rebuild that look from scratch.

We will also take a look at the new FCP X 10.2 Update

That’s right, as I write this Insight, the 10.2 Update was released a week ago and there are significant changes that affect our Color Correction workflow. In fact, I really like this Update. Features that we’ll be looking at in this Insight include:

• The Color Board is now an Effect Layer

• The Color Board can be re-ordered within the Effect Stack!

• Copying and pasting specific Effect Layers to other shots

• How to find the Color Board after the FCP X 10.2 update

This last bullet brings me to what I don’t like about the FCP X 10.2 update

But rather than harp on it in this Insight, you can read my original article about NAB 2015 where I mention my one big disappointment with FCP X 10.2. I got some pushback on my comments, so I followed that article with another article that has a more detailed explanation of my comments. (If you wish to comment on either of those thoughts, I prefer you do so at those posts to keep the conversation from fragmenting.)

Next in this series: Additional Looks techniques using the FCP X core filter set

The next Insight in this series will explore some additional techniques for creating Looks that don’t rely on the pre-built effects (since I find those hard to work with). I also pick out one pre-built effect I kind’a like and could see myself using.

– pat

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