Charts on set. What would one need ?

Margus Voll Jul 20, 2015

  1. I wonder what charts one in ideal world need to shoot on set to be happy in post ?

    As i do produce some stuff that i grade later i have a plan to make "perfect" workflow.
    So i'm trying to gather some info for that. That made me wondering.
  2. Yes, I'm also interested in this.

    When shooting a color chart on set, should this be done once for every setup, or for every take?

    If doing it only once, how does the colorist make use of it, if they used take 3 in the edit? Does the colorist then have to search through the files it find Take 1, to take advantage of the color chart?

    Then what if they give you a media managed drive with only the files used in the edit, you have no access to the color chart.
  3. I bet it is good idea to "beat" workflow in order before shooting.

    Marc have commented on the subject some times. Was hoping he would chime in and list all charts that would
    be good idea to have and shoot.
  4. it depends on how much mixed light there is. if it's a studio shoot, once if adequate. On product shoots where color accuracy is paramount, I have the guys use a chart in every single setup. The DSC One Shot works great for general shooting. I'll use the bigger DSC charts if it's higher profile or certain colors are critical to the shoot.

    I have the editors gather the clips with charts and put them on a separate timeline
  5. Personally, if a client asks what my preference is, I just ask them to shoot a grey scale at the beginning of a new lighting setup (not every take). If the blacks, greys and whites are neutral, then everything else falls into place, and balancing a chart is just a starting point anyways. I'm sure there are other opinions on the subject, but it's always worked well for me.
  6. I like the DSC Chroma DuMonde chart:


    And I always insist that on at least the first day, every camera shoot a framing chart:


    Just so I can guarantee what they see is what they get. Arri has some interesting tech papers on camera charts and what they can and cannot do:

    "Usage of CDM Test Charts with the ALEXA Camera"

    In truth, I've color-timed hundreds and hundreds of features and TV series with no charts at all, just going by guts, feel, and client response. But I'd rather have the chart just so I know where the colors are supposed to be, where black is supposed to be, and where white is supposed to be under ideal circumstances, even if those circumstances never happen again.

    Ideally, I'd like at least one color chart per day or per location change, but that frequently doesn't happen.

    In a pinch, I can even work with just a grayscale chart if it comes down to it. Just getting that alone will help you match two or three different cameras, but I'd rather have the color charts if I have a choice.
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  7. Thanks for the link to the tech paper. Where'd you find that framing chart, Marc? I found this one:

    Attached Files:

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  8. Yes, I agree -- your framing chart is much better. Arri has a bunch of terrific resources on their website, including LUT generators, explanations of their color science, and lots of information as to aspect ratios, uprezzing, and downrezzing.

    I find the big camera rental companies (AbelCine, Band Pro, Birns & Swayer, Bling, Camera House, Clairmont, Otto Nemenz, Panavision, etc.) will often provide a free custom framing chart based on the specific lens packages and camera you rent. This is especially helpful if you're shooting 5K and downsizing to 4K, or shooting full-ap Alexa and cropping for 2.39 or 1.85. It'll also help determine if there's any focus issues or flat field problems. I've frequently used a B&W camera framing chart as a visual reference when nothing else is available, just to give me a starting point. It's better than totally winging it, particularly in mixed lighting or non-standard color-temperature situations.

    One challenge for modern-day shoots is that we don't have the benefit of camera reports the way we used to. I think good DPs will still make a note on slates for scene setup like color-temperature, frame rates, interior/exterior, and so on. Too many people don't do this, and you wind up getting mismatched cameras and all kinds of grief in post or dailies later on.
  9. What about this one ?

    Does it have not so much samples?
  10. Wish I had the budget for a DSC chart. Margus ... I've had good luck with the Sekonic x-rite classic color checker for wide shots and the Sekonic passport for close ups. The passport version has a white and 20% gray card, which I find, in many ways, more helpful in post than the color chart for white balance and spot metering when setting up zones, respectively. I never use the color chart gizmo in Resolve anyway.
  11. This is a great chart and real easy see what's going on in your vectorscope.
  12. I have actually passport but have not used it in "video" yet. Just for photography.

    Why i asked about this One Shot was skin tones in the middle. With people it usually is good idea to match those.
  13. Went to see B&H and now it gets super confusing already :)
  14. The DSC targets are much more accurate than colorcheckers, that's why even the oneshot is more expensive. The CMYRGB colors on the chart match the targets on the vectorscope (the chart is 50% saturation, so turn on 2x on scope), so it's easy to see whats going on with the colors.

    Smpte is selling oneshot for $99 here.
    Scott Stacy likes this.
  15. I wonder if they have this One Shot in different size ?

    That would explain price difference.
  16. The One-Shot is great, too. They do charge different prices for different sizes, but I find the larger ones are easier to deal with on-set, plus they can get them in focus and in the light easier. The little tiny $99 One-Shot ain't gonna hack it if it's only about a foot long. But you don't necessarily have to buy the $1800 chart, either.

    Dave Corley (The "DC" of DSC) told me at NAB the reasons why the charts cost so much is that he goes through a great deal of trouble matching printer's ink to his reference colors, and conducts all kinds of tests to make sure the charts are absolutely consistent. In truth, I think they only are guaranteed accurate for a year or two, but again, I'd rather have some chart than no chart.
  17. I will try to get One Shot for my upcoming shoot then and play with it a bit.

    I can see why the hi end charts are expensive. Super accurate calibration is painful and costly always
    on super hi level.

    This Galaxy looks cool tho.
  18. The One Shot is a great location chart and the Chroma Du Monde is the one for a complete camera setup.

    I visited DSC in Toronto a few years ago and was blown away by their attention to detail, if they couldn't buy and accurate enough printer then they'd make their own!!

    On the use of charts, I like to shoot framing charts for all cameras as mentioned and if it's a movie I like to shoot all the lenses in the same light on the same chart so that we can establish offsets.

    As far as actual shooting goes, I prefer to shoot a chart in a reference lighting setup and ask that everything be set to that, whatever happens next is what I intended it to be!

    I used to have a chart that I used for commercials that had a message on the back, the AC would show the chart side first and then flip it over so the dailies colourist could read "please grade to this chart and then take your hands off, remember, I know where your children live"
  19. That B side note sounds brilliant!
  20. I've gotten those notes on commercial dailies slates: "Marc, this is supposed to be blue! Don't screw it up!" :oops:
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