LAB Color Foundations Part 4: Optimizing Node Trees (in DaVinci Resolve)

December 10, 2014

Explore the different types of DaVinci Resolve node trees for LAB colorspace. Should we do all our work in one node? Or multiple nodes?

Day 10: 25 Insights in 25 Days Holiday Marathon

DaVinci Resolve: Node Trees for LAB – Working more efficiently

Should you do all your LAB colorspace work in a single node? Or in multiple nodes?

Should the LAB node be at the start of your node tree or should you save it to the end?

Organizing Your Nodes in LAB

Deciding where to perform operations can be challenging in DaVinci Resolve. It’s architecture is very free-form and it’s not always clear which operation to perform first.

Flipping a node into LAB is another one of those murky ‘where does it go?’ operations.

LAB or L / A / B or something else?

The first inclination of most colorists is either work entirely within one node or isolate each color channel into its own node. But there are other combinations that make a ton of sense with LAB.

And once we figure out our ideal approach, where does it fit in with our ‘normal’ RGB color grading nodes?

That’s what we’ll explore in this Intermediate Level Insight, which will assume you’ve got a basic understanding of how to re-organize your node trees (and have watched the previous Insights in this series).

Download My Resolve 11 LAB PowerGrade v002

As mentioned in this video, the PowerGrades you see me use in this video are available for download from this link. [/MM_Member_Decision] Paid members of the Insights Color Library may download the LAB PowerGrades I use in this video Insight. To access, please log in.

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3 thoughts on “LAB Color Foundations Part 4: Optimizing Node Trees (in DaVinci Resolve)”

  1. I know you complained about the resolve curve funkiness, I wonder if you can take advance of photoshops new export lut feature to apply the LAB color contrast adjustments in photoshops curves. Can lab adjustments translate in a LUT?

    1. Greg – I like your thinking. Yes, you can build those curves in Photoshop and use them as LUTs in Resolve. But as you’ll see (eventually), there are advantages to being able to manipulate those curves as overall color balance moves or for some pretty hyper secondary ‘effects’ type Looks. The moment we turn those into a LUT, we lose those capabilities.

      For the moment I’ll stick with the PowerGrades I’ve built—but I’ll keep thinking about what you said.

      If you try it, let us know how it goes!

  2. Hi Patrick.
    i am fairly new here, this is my first comment i believe, i am going back to the old insights to find interesting subjects.
    LAB always interested me and in photoshop is a great tool, in Resolve i haven’t used it that much.

    I was wondering, have you been use LAB often since it was introduce a couple of years ago? (above all now that the curve tool behave much better)

    Have you found some way to fix highlights or to add sharpening, as described in the Photoshop LAB Color book.


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