Color on the BMPCC is not easy for me.

Let me first say I am not a colorist. Far from it, but I think I understand the basics to processing an image.

I am trying to do something pretty simple, match the same shot from my Canon 5D Mark III to the new Black Magic Pocket Camera. I am not finding this to be a easy thing to do.

Please watch this video and if you have an suggestions on how to match the skin tones for this shot I would really appreciate it!

Here is a few seconds of each clip if you wanted to give it a try.


  • The classical approach is to use (albeit crudely) the crop tool within Adobe Premiere Pro temporarily to make only the skin exposed, and shift the color temperature until the fuzz on that round scope largely points to the skin-tone-line, which is roughly at 10:00. That’s just temperature, though, independent of saturation — and glancing at the poster frame of your video, certainly an increased saturation value on the left would have gotten very close to the right.

  • You could try, in a similar vein to what Paul mentioned, to use the color qualifier in Resolve to select only the skin tones. More saturation would definitely help, I think, too. Once you’ve qualified just the skin, you can compare the two in the RGB parade and vector scope while tuning the color difference. This way at least you won’t have to worry about the color being too powerful across the whole image. Further, I’d suggest using the Log color wheels instead of the Primaries — they might help with limiting the power. In the Key selector window you also have control over opacity of the whole node, so if one node is too intense, just pull it back a bit there.

    Also, don’t forget that you can use separate nodes, or even parallel nodes, along with complementary colors to counter out certain unwanted colors, etc.

  • Here’s my attempt with the files you provided:

    I used the Log controls to dial in both clips to about the same amount of contrast and saturation (though, the Canon one definitely has more of both by default) while correcting the slight bit of yellow in the highlights. In the same node, I added the max amount of saturation.
    My second node was mainly for the offset color wheel, which I used in concert with the vector scope to try to align the color patterns between the two cameras. Little tweaks with the S/M/T wheels let me match the length of the Canon’s scope image. I couldn’t really figure out how to totally eliminate that blob you mentioned, but I was able to get a decently similar look nonetheless.
    Next, I used two parallel nodes, each with their own qualifier. One was for the hair, which seemed to have way higher contrast and redness on the BPCC, so I made the slightest most minimal gamma change in the opposite direction while darkening the gamma just a tad as well. The second qualifier was for the skin; I sampled the skin tones from both shots and compared the qualifier’s results, then countered them out just a tad.

    They still don’t look exactly the same (and, now that I look at it, the BPCC could use some more brightness in the highs), but I think the result looks at least half decent, I hope.

  • Hi,

    Can you pls advice how can I run Davinci Resolve lite (free version) smoothly with
    imac, i hike up the ram to 12 GB and I use Lumix GH2 and also Sony NEX VG20; dosent seems to be working the way its working like here? Does the free version good at all?

  • @Trevisani @Ruben Thanks guys for your help! I will give another try at it today with the info you provided.

    @Arash yes I have watched that one several times, thanks for mentioning that one.

  • My DaVinci Resolve is crashing my Mac at the moment so I went in with After effects. I boosted the Saturation and then started sampling the background and comparing RGB values using the Tint plugin (turned off). Once I got those close I started sampling the skin tones and used the Levels plug to dial in just a slight amount of Green and Blue out and Red in. Then I added a quarter of a stop of Exposure. I copied my Levels settings twice and switched those off so you can see my values.

    The detail on the BMPC is really nice, is that the camera or lens? The 5D looks soft to me.

  • You should use the Primaries panel instead since it response to a mouse scroll its much easier to make small adjustments. I use a trackpad with the scroll sensitivity turn way down in the universal Access section of the os x settings panel.