Efficient Tools for Colour Correction on Premiere Pro
Written by Tyra Grey
Your video looks great, and now all that’s left is colour correcting. If you have two monitors, you will notice that even though the colour is accurate on one screen, it doesn’t mean it will be just as accurate when it’s on your friend’s computer, your boss’ tablet - basically, any device that’s not the computer you are currently using. Today, my friend, you will learn just enough colour correction tips that may just fulfill your video’s needs.
White balance (also known as WB on a DSLR camera) is helpful for when you want to remove the parts of your video that appear white. When colour correcting your video, you would take the eyedropper tool, drop it on the area of the video that is just white, and Premiere Pro will automatically change the colour of your shot, matching it to look natural.
HSL stands for hue, saturation and lightness/luminance. Hue is very useful for when you have a nice colour in your shot that you want to make more appealing, I would say. I know that Peter McKinnon, a YouTuber uses hue to make his shots of water more dark blue, or the sky more light blue, making shots more appealing. Sometimes, your video must just be lacking colour, so you can use hue to bring out colours you don’t see when the colours you wanted to get in your shot. Saturation is very much the same, however, it only brings out the colours that are already there. It makes the colours more colourful, but be careful, too much saturation and it is oversaturated and trust me, people can tell.
Lumetri Scopes are built into Premiere Pro which means that you don’t have to go out searching for a colour correction software. If it’s not already on your screen, go to the very top left of your screen, click Windows and make sure Lumetri Scopes is checked off. There are a couple of scopes located in Lumetri scopes such as Waveform, Vectroscope And Parade Scopes. It sounds scary and difficult, but once you realize that all of them do relatively the same thing, you will be a pro in no time!
For all these scopes mentioned below, you must click the wrench icon to get the kind of scopes you want because there are many options for each scope.
Waveform monitors luminance and chrominance, don’t know what those are? Luminance is brightness and chrominance is colour. On the sides of the chart; the numbers range from 0 (black) to 100 (white) measuring the intensity of whichever one you selected - luminance or chrominance. The white level is at the top and black is on the bottom of the waveform scope.
The vectorscope is a circle with red, blue, green and yellow in 4 quadrants as well as what looks like a puff of white smoke. The vectorscope measures saturation inside the outline of the shape within the circle. When a colour is more saturated than another, that “puff of white smoke” will lean more towards the colour that is more saturated. Now Premiere Pro offers 2 vectorscopes: Vectorscope YUV (default) and Vector HLS. The one I talked about above is YUV, HLS shows all hue, saturation and lightness, all being shown in distributed pixels.
Last scope is called the parade scope or the RGB parade scope. This scope gives you a view of each colour - red, blue and green. I would compare this to the vector scope, however this scope shows an isolated view of the colours’ intensities. If you left click on the graph, you will find Parade types, however, you’ll find you use RGB the most.
Out of all the scopes, I would say the Spark video team uses Lumetri Scopes more than any other because for example, sometimes the colour of a person’s skin may appear a little red on our videos, so we use Lumetri Scopes to take out the red and bring in a more orange skin tone, but that’s just us. Use whatever scope, or colour correcting tip works for you.
Levels and Curves
Last but not least, let’s talk about Levels and Curves, both are built into Premiere Pro and can manipulate a black point in an image. However, you have to find Levels under Effects & Presets and drag it to a video clip. What’s the difference? Curves allow you to manipulate an image with an actual curve which can be transformed into an S curve which allows for additional points for fine tuning. Levels are basically the same, but can only be dragged along a horizontal axis.
There you go, the 4 efficient tools for colour correction on Premiere Pro. These are the tools that the Spark video team uses a lot and we feel will definitely help with the colour correction that may not be enough for your video.