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4.1 Color Calibration in Post

In this lesson you will learn how to calibrate the colors from your ColorChecker.

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4.1 Color Calibration in Post

In this lesson, you will learn how to calibrate the colors from your X-Rite colorchecker passport. So I'm in Lightroom here, and you can see there's a bunch of photos that I've taken on the vacuum photo copy stand with the exact rig that you just saw in the last several videos. And what I wanna show you in this lesson is how to take this X-Rite colorchecker passport photo here and turn that into a color profile that we can use to apply to the rest of these photos. So this is a very easy process. When you get the X-Rite Colorchecker passport, it's gonna come with software, or you can just download the software from their website. And it comes with some software that you can use kind of stand alone, and it also comes with a Lightroom plug-in and that's what I'm gonna show you here. If I go to File and under Plug-in Manager, you can see that I have the ColorChecker Passport plugin installed and running, it's a very easy process. It takes like two minutes to download, and there's a folder that you have to put in a specific location on your hard drive, and that's pretty much it. So now what you can do, I'll right-click on this photo, and I will choose Export and then right here, ColorChecker Passport. And then, what I'm gonna do is name this. And I'm gonna use some specific names to help me remember what I was using when I shot this photo, so that if I use this same exact setup again, I can actually just use the same color profile and it should get me almost 100% of the way there. So I might type in Canon7D. So I have the camera that I was using, the lens that I was using, the lighting source that I was using, these BlueMax HD 26 watt CFLs, and the light modifier, those 30-inch OctaBoxes. And then, when I click Save, for me, it's gonna tell me that I already have one that's named exactly the same, but that's okay. I'm just gonna click OK and overwrite that. And you're gonna see up here, it's gonna process this file, which takes just a minute, and then hopefully it'll come up with a dialog that says, The profile has been generated successfully. Lightroom must be restarted to activate the profile. Now I said hopefully, because, sometimes it's a little bit finicky. I found in the test that I did with this before. This is how I actually shot the photo. And for whatever reason, the plugin cannot figure this out if it's upside down. So, all I had to do was rotate the photo so that it was right side up and it worked just fine. So now what I need to do is shut down Lightroom and reopen it. And then once it's reopened, now if I go over here, and I'm in the Develop module, if I come down here under Camera Calibration, underneath Profile I have an option down here, that says Canon7D_Sigma17-50_Bluemax yada yada yada. This is the color profile that I just created. So if I click on this, you're going to see a very, slight shift in these colors. Let me zoom up here maybe to not quite 100% here. And just look at the difference, it's gonna be subtle, but you're gonna see a shift in some of these colors. Especially this orange I can tell out of my peripheral, this red down here, these blues, all of these are going to shift. Watch when I switch it back. Pretty much all of the colors shift to be better-looking. They look okay here, but they're not that great. Here, they look much better. They look maybe a tad green with the standard color profile. And yeah, you could tweak that up and maybe get this close, but this is so much faster and easier that this is really the right way to do it. So that's really pretty much it. Once you have this color profile, you can apply it to any of these other shots that you've done on this rig or what would be easier is to synchronize all of these and just apply it to all of them. Because I know that I want this color profile, this color calibration, I want to apply to all of these photos. One thing that I wanna do first, though, is I want to white balance this. So really quickly, what I'm gonna do is just grab the eyedropper here, and I'm just gonna pick one of these kind of gray swatches here and that's going to white balance this for me. And now I can select this first one and then I'll just scroll to the end here and then I'll choose Sync, and I'm gonna check none of these and then what I want to do is do white balance and Process version and Calibration. And I will synchronize all of those. And then all of those now have the color calibration applied and they also have that white balance. Now, some of the photo's are going to need to be tweaked again because I just set the white balance for the lights, and in some of these other shots here, I'm taking a photo of a photo, so the white balance is sort of irrelevant, because the white balance in the photo might not be correct. So I know that's a little bit confusing. I was correcting for the white balance of the light, but if you're taking a photo of a photo, that makes the photo look like it does in real life, which could be wrong in terms of the white balance of the photo. For example, this photo the white balance is set correctly for the lights, but this photo looks too warm. It looks like the actual photo, the white balance is wrong. So that's something that I'm gonna show you how to correct in the next lesson, where we look at making some basic adjustments to these photos. So check that out coming up next.

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