Look Development Part 1: Laying The Foundation

January 5, 2021

Learn how to establish good color management and clear definitions for your look development workflow.

Day 5: 24 Insights in 24 Days New Year Marathon

Setting Up The Technical Side Of Look Creation

In this Insight, I’m kicking off a new series on look development.

The ability to create and deploy quality creative looks in our grades is one of the most important muscles for us to develop as colorists. But for many of us, the subject is fraught with fuzzy concepts and inefficient methodology. Together we’re going to take ownership of this vital skill by walking through the full process of developing and implementing a look. It all starts with sharpening our concepts and laying a quality foundation.

Here in Part 1 of this series, you’ll learn how to begin the look development process by:

  • Clearing up our definitions
    • What exactly is a look? Just as important, what isn’t a look?
    • Global vs. clip-level/individualized manipulations
    • Technical vs. creative manipulations
  • Setting up good color management for each of your camera sources using a “Custom ACES” workflow, in combination with Resolve’s groups feature

Once we have solid color management in place — in other words, our global and technical manipulations — we can fully concentrate on the global and creative manipulations which will comprise our look. We’re going to begin this process in our next Insight, where we’ll look at setting our creative exposure, contrast curve, color temperature, and saturation.

In the meantime, if you have any questions, thoughts or something to add to the discussion, I’d love to hear about it in the comments!

Finally, if you’d like to do a deeper dive on Custom ACES, I highly recommend Joey D’Anna’s series on the topic:



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