Advanced V-Log Color Grading Workflow in Premiere Pro CC

Though shooting video with a log picture profile certainly has its perks, processing your log footage can be a pretty daunting experience. When filming with a log profile – such as Panasonic’s V-Log – you’re able to produce footage with high dynamic range and improved color fidelity. However, due to the flat-looking aesthetic of the log profile, you will have to perform additional steps in post to properly correct and grade your footage.

So, if you plan to use the V-Log picture profile (found on the Panasonic GH5/GH5s cameras) for your next project, you should definitely check out this excellent tutorial produced by Joo.Works as you will learn how to quickly and properly color correct and grade your V-log footage inside of Adobe Premiere Pro CC.

This particular method of color correcting V-Log footage suggests utilizing several built-in filters available with Premiere Pro CC. First, add your clips to the timeline. Then head over to the Effects panel and apply the Channel Mixer effect to your footage.

With this plug-in, you will need to input the settings listed below. This step will help adapt the colors of your V-Log footage to work in the standard Rec. 709 colorspace. Keep in mind that the following settings will only work for the GH5/GH5S V-Log.

  • Red-Red: 180
  • Red-Green: -70
  • Red-Blue: -11
  • Red-Const: 0
  • Green-Red: -17
  • Green-Green: 130
  • Green-Blue: -14
  • Green-Const: 0
  • Blue-Red: -3
  • Blue-Green: -16
  • Blue-Blue: 118
  • Blue-Const: 0

After you’ve dialed in the settings into the color mixer, go back to the Effects panel and add the RGB Curves effect. Next, open the Lumetri Scopes window. This tool will allow you to visualize the colors of your scene, thus helping you evaluate more accurately just how far you can push your image.

In the Master of the RGB Curves plug-in, raise the highlights until the waveforms of the scope reach a maximum height of 95. Afterward, reduce the shadows of the Master Curve just before the graphics hit 0. Lastly, add a slight s-curve in the midline portion of the Master Curve, thereby adding a subtle touch of contrast to your scene.

To further color correct your image, use the tools inside of the Basic Corrections tab of Lumetri Color. In the Basic Corrections tab, you can adjust the white balance, tint, contrast, exposure, highlights, shadows, black, and whites – all to your liking, depending on how your image is lit.

An alternative method to color correcting your V-Log footage is by using the LUT pack created by Joo.Works, available for free on his website – the download link for which can be found here.

To use any of the available look-up tables, go inside of the Lumetri Color window. Under the Creative tab, click on the Look menu, browse your computer and open the LUTs. You’ll see that once the LUT is applied, your footage will appear rich and colorful compared to the raw footage.

If you’re looking to fine tune the contrast of your shot, create an adjustment layer and in the Opacity settings, set the Blending Mode to Overlay.

Next, go into the Effects panel and add the RGB Curves effect to your newly created layer. With the Master Curve, adjust the shape of the curve to add or reduce the contrast to a look that suits your project. A common technique is to create an s-curve appearance which slightly raises the highlights while subtly crushing the shadows.

For further customization over the colors of your image, adjust the individual R, G, and B curves. By raising and lowering the graphic of each color channel, you’re able to emphasize or take away particular colors in your footage.

If you find that the highlights of your scene may be too bright, there is an easy way to correct that as well. In the Effect Controls, duplicate the Lumetri Color effect and rename the duplicate “Highlight Recover”. Reset the filter by clicking the reset button.

Making sure to first select the effect you named Highlight Recover, return to the Lumetri Color panel and go into the HSL Secondary tab. Deselect the Hue and Saturation checkmarks located next to their corresponding sliders. Then tweak the Luminance slider until you mask out the highlights of your scene.

Under the Refine tools, increase the Blur to around 70, allowing you to soften your highlight mask. Finally, under the Correction tab, tweak the shadows, midtones, and highlights. You can also play around with the colors of your highlighted area by adjusting the color wheel.

If you feel that your overall image needs more correction, you can always go back into the Lumetri color and make any necessary adjustments under the Basic Corrections tab. Just remember to first select your main Lumetri Color effect in the Effect Controls before you make any corrections.

Lastly, if you want to have the colors of your clip match as close as possible, consider using Premiere Pro’s new comparison view. With this functionality, you’ll be able to view two different frames from your timeline, helping you keep track of the main look you want for your project as you grade and correct each video clip.

For content creators who are new to working with V-Log footage, the steps outlined above can help you familiarize yourself with Panasonic’s flexible and versatile picture profile. Besides merely following the directions in this article, understanding the functions of each plug-in and techniques used will give you the opportunity to create your own efficient color correction workflow over time.

[source: Joo.Works]

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