The advent of Log footage has changed completely the shape of the industry in just a few years and the way filmmakers are getting the so-called film look in post. The usage of Log profiles is almost ubiquitous and each brand has developed its flavor.
Specifically, on the Canon C200, you can find C-Log2, and who could be a better candidate than Armando Ferreira to guide us in the process of grading this flat and unappealing profile.
The diffusion of Log profiles in the low end of the industry was a real revolution. The process was kicked by the 5D Mark II, which was in no way a log shooter but gave the initial spin to the wheel.
In fact, some will remember the birth of Cinelike profiles, one of the first attempts made to recreate log images in DSLRs. But we’ve gone a long way from there, and now even cheap entry-level mirrorless cameras have log profile, or at least a quasi-log, like HLG.
In this particular case, Armando tackles his color grading workflow with a simple close-up shot, no-frills, no special lighting gear. Right off the bat, you can see one of the most amazing features in action: white balance adjustment. That is, in fact, the very first step usually reserved when treating raw files.
As a next step, you should head to the master tab of the clip to adjust color temperature and tint. This seems to be a quite useful tool, right? Be aware, though, that you should select the right profile in advance in the dropdown menu before making any changes.
At this stage, Armando sets a base LUT on the footage. In this case, it’s a LUT he’s created by himself. If you want to replicate the exact steps, you can download his custom LUT here. Once you’ve downloaded it, you can install it, so that you can always have it available inside Premiere Pro CC.
Next, go to the Lumetri Color and choose the LUT in question in the dropdown menu. You’ll see how the flat footage comes to life instantly with colors popping up. In fact, it’s a tad strong to be a base LUT as it goes heavily in the teal and orange look, but after all, that’s the specific look Armando opts for.
As even Adobe itself suggests, you should follow a top to bottom approach here by starting with temperature and tint and going down. Try to move the slider until you find the look that you like. Adjust the basic settings like contrast, shadows, again, all the basics.
Meanwhile, the huge load of work Armando does seems to be in the curves. Shaping an S-curve is the usual workflow for all Log footage, but here we see a very slight S, and in the lower end, where the deepest shadows are controlled. Ferreira rises a little bit the curve to get slightly washed-out black.
As a closing touch, you can add a slight sharpening from the creative tab. Ultimately, if the skin tones seem too strong in saturation, you can use the eyedropper tool in the Hue vs Sat curve to pick the exact color tone and lower saturation from the curve itself.
But that is up to you and the footage you’ve got. One thing you can and should do once finished your correction is to save a preset if you’ve got more footage from the same settings to grade.
Just right-click on the effects control tab on Lumetri Color, and select Save Preset. Done! You’ve got your nice grading saved and ready to go for the next time you shoot with your favorite EOS C200.