I completed my first short film in December. One of the most time consuming aspects of the project was making the colors look nice. I used Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5 and the free Magic Bullet plugin. I learned a lot. I now realise that color correction and grading is more of an art than an established set of rules.
Could an expereinced colorist provide some practical tips about dealing with color correction and grading over the scope of the entire project.
- Should I wait until I have a rough cut until I start correcting?
- Should I correct individual clips on the timeline, or correct the original source?
- Should correction (of exposure etc.) and grading (achieving a "look") be done at separate stages?
- What kind of automated colour correction tools are there?
- Are there things I can do during production that would help with the color correction (i.e. using a target with color squares printed on it like this)?