DaVinci Resolve Tutorial Part 31: Color Correction – Working with the Waveform Monitor

DaVinci Resolve Tutorial Part 31 Animated Waveform

By Kevin P. McAuliffe

In our previous lesson of our look at learning BlackMagic Design’s DaVinci Resolve, we took a look at working with ResolveFX effects in your DaVinci Resolve timeline.  In this lesson, we’re going to move on and start talking about color correction and color grading, in the first of a long, multi-part tutorial series.

Color correction is always where you start, before getting into your grading.  You want to even all your shots out, and then go and start giving them the look you want.  When I’m color correcting, normally I start very simple, by working with the Highlights, Midtones and Shadows.  Now, if you’re not familiar with what that means, in relation to color correction, we’re working with the brightest areas of your shot (Highlights), the medium bright areas of your shot (Midtones), and the darkest areas of your shot (Shadows).  Keep in mind that you might hear Highlights, Midtones and Shadows referred to in many different ways. White, Grey and Black (H, M, S) or Gain, Gamma and Lift (H, M, S) . The easiest way to see this is on a Waveform monitor. A video waveform, much like an audio waveform, will show you a visual representation of the Highlights, Midtones, and Shadows in your shot.

DaVinci Resolve Tutorial Part 31 Waveform

To alter the G/G/L, we’re going to head into our Color Module, and I normally like to switch over to the Primary Bars tool.

DaVinci Resolve Tutorial Part 31 Primary Bars

Once there, you’ll see your G/G/L color bars, and an additional “grey” bar that will adjust your light levels for appropriate range of your shot.  Are your brights too bright, drag down the grey slider for Gain, and what what happens on your waveform monitor.

DaVinci Resolve Tutorial Part 31 Animated Waveform

Using this method, we can easily get in and do a quick color correction for each shot in our timeline, and we’ll do that, in our next lesson!

Meanwhile, check out our entire catalog of tutorials for DaVinci Resolve here.


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