Mastering DaVinci Resolve’s Cloud and Point Trackers for Power Windows and OpenFX

June 6, 2020

If you want to master DaVinci Resolve's Color Page then you need to master its Cloud and Point trackers. This Insight sets you on that path.


Team Mixing Light Note: This is part of a series explaining the fundamentals of DaVinci Resolve. These ‘Toolkit’ Insights are pulled from our DaVinci Resolve 12, 12.5, 14 and What’s New in Resolve 14 Courses. The goal is to eventually build a ‘How To’ of Insights on Resolve’s core features directly in the Insights Library. These ‘Toolkit’ Insights will be collected into Flight Paths to create a quick-access video manual.

Digging deep into tracking objects for Power Windows and OpenFX

One of the great, core features that make Resolve’s Color Page so powerful is its tracking toolset. These tools allow you to isolate objects using Power Window shapes and have those shapes move with the object. Revamped in the Resolve 12 release cycle, this toolset has evolved over multiple versions of the software. As a result, if you’re new to DaVinci Resolve (or haven’t kept up with the changes) digging into its deep toolset can be intimidating. Don’t let that stop you.

If you want to understand the power of the Color Page then you want to study how to track shapes to objects. Resolve’s tracker is most powerful when helping you rescue failed tracks – both when tiny modifications or large revisions are required. Once you understand the depth of this toolset, worlds of new color grading possibilities open to you.

In fact, once you learn how to control the results of your tracking operations you’ll be tempted to isolate everything in the frame, all the time. This impulse grabs most of us at some time. The trick then is two-fold:

  1. You need to learn how to gain total mastery over the tracker.
  2. You then need to learn how to *not* use the tracker everywhere, all the time.

This Insight focuses on the first item: Gaining mastery over the tool. The second item? Well, like a cinematographer realizing that the key to their success is by learning to turn lights off the colorist learns to use a light touch on isolations only through experience and practice. But for both cinematographers and colorists, starting with well-produced source material adds greatly to our learning curves.

Table of Contents for this Insight

This Insight runs on the long’ish side and covers many different features that were added to the tracking toolset in Resolve versions 12, 12.5, and 14. Both Joey D’Anna and I lead you through these UI elements. If you’re looking for specific guidance on a specific tracking feature then here’s the ToC to help you jump to the section of this Insight you’re trying to learn:

  • Intro – The power of Resolve’s tracker and why you this is an essential tool toward Color Page mastery
  • 1:26 – Tracker Fundalmentals
  • 4:50 – Eliminating problematic sections of a track, without re-doing the entire track
  • 6:33 – Moving and resizing Power Windows after tracking
  • 7:33 – Using the 3D Perspective option
  • 9:02 – Using the ‘Frame Mode’ to make adjustments to existing tracking data
  • 11:40 – Tracking people and objects and they move on/off screen
  • 19:54 – How to use the Point Tracker
  • 24:39 – Using the Tracker’s ‘Interactive Mode’ for more advanced/precise tracking operations
  • 28:22 – Applying tracking data to OpenFX trackers

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