Good Grades: Talking Color & Suite Design With Shawn King

January 8, 2021

We welcome new contributor Jason Druss to Team Mixing Light as he kicks off his new 'Good Grades' series talking to top colorists. First up Shawn King


Please join us in welcoming Jason Druss to Team MixingLight! Jason is an accomplished colorist, instructor, and all-around great guy. You can learn more about Jason by checking out his bio and by visiting his website. We’re looking forward to many awesome Insights from Jason.

Day 8: 24 Insights in 24 Days New Year Marathon

Good Grades: A Mixing Light Podcast

Welcome to the first episode of Good Grades, a new MixingLight video podcast focused on interviewing colorists, engineers, and post-production professionals. For our first episode, we sat down with Supervising Colorist and Facility Owner Shawn King of Honest Labor, a leading boutique color and finishing facility in Brooklyn, NY. Shawn is one of those colorists who is just a ton of fun to talk to and hang out with.

I specifically wanted to take a deep dive on the way he’s designed his office and grading environments, which have always been very aesthetically pleasing while specifically supporting the needs of his clients in the fast-paced commercial market in NYC. It was an absolute pleasure to catch up and learn how he has adapted to the “new normal” while expanding his business with a new B-suite during the pandemic.

In this episode, we discuss:

  • Purposeful office and suite design
  • How design and construction augments client services
  • The pros and cons of letting clients view both (colorist + client) reference monitors
  • Using Flanders Scientific’s XM651U for HDR monitoring
  • Preparing for HDR to trickle to the commercial world
  • Digitizing client services & going remote in the wake of Covid-19
  • Long term implications of post-production real estate post-pandemic
  • Digging into Shawn’s top projects
  • Appreciating the daily “Roadmap” of Color Grading

To help you get a sense of the space at Honest Labor as you listen to my interview with Shawn here are some images of the facility including their new HDR B-Suite.

Honest Labor’s Living Room & Kitchen for Client Services and Office Work.

Bright, inviting & open!  One of the things I love about the Honest Labor space is how it feels comfortable like a living room and professional/pulled together at the same time.

Shawn’s A-Suite. Instead of the client monitor on top of or in front of the Colorist’s desk, Shawn opted for a “living room” feeling designed around better communication with clients. Notice that Shawn carved out a chunk of wall with empty space for his bias light to remain hidden and create a three-dimensional look for his clients.

I’ve been in a lot of color suites over the years and in my opinion, the ‘A’ suite at Honest labor is one of the nicest.  The L configuration allows Shawn to easily pivot to talk with clients, and they have a great view with a large client monitor directly in front of comfortable seating.

Shawn’s B-Suite, Constructed during Covid-19 and HDR Capable with an FSI XM651U Reference Monitor

It’s a good problem to have to need to build another suite! The new B suite was purposefully designed with HDR monitoring in mind, with the ability to upgrade with additional HDR mastering monitor in the future

Thanks for watching, listening, and exploring. See you next time! Let me know who we should interview soon in the comments : )

– Jason


1,200+ Tutorials, Articles, and Webinars To Explore

Get 7-day access to our library of over 1,200+ tutorials - for $5!
Do you like what you see? Maintain access for less than $5 per month.

Start Your Test Drive!