hello all, I'm starting a film next week, shooting with an Alexa mini, UHD, RAW...almost all night interior and on location.. I wanted to pick your brains on LUT packages...is there a series of LUTs you recommend for download or purchase? I have used the built-in LUTs of the Alexa mini before but I want to have a larger selection of display-gamma and colour space for my director on the set...any suggestions?
Edited by Kiarash Sadigh, 12 April 2017 - 06:17 PM.
I may sound crazy, but I don't believe in purchasing LUTs. Instead, I recommend developing looks in prep that fit the film's style. The look goes beyond the LUT too; the production design, color temp, exposure, etc.
Can you elaborate on what you mean by larger selection of display-gamma? If you mean just different levels of gamma applied to the LogC footage, then I recommend doing it in camera on set through the look controls that I believe the Mini has.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but color space limited to the color gamut, which itself is limited the viewing devices on set (most likely Rec709) and the final viewing medium (most likely a Rec709 as well for TV, laptops, etc).
If you have the time to shoot tests and take the footage all the way thru the post pipeline, then I think you and your DIT and/or colorist might as well just create the viewing LUTs yourselves. Otherwise, I would be wary of using custom LUTs downloaded off the internet without enough time to fully test with your lighting, makeup, wardrobe, etc.
Especially for night interiors where you could end up underexposing as a result. If it's a heavily stylized look, the same LUT may not work in high key situations or with particular saturated colors. At least with the supplied Arri LUTs you'll know what you're getting. Just my opinion though.
Yeah I really haven't seen the point of LUTs saving your ass or making the look. Sometimes I'll play with them, but generally, I'll just work to the REC image, knowing. that if that looks great then i have room to massage later on in post.
Ideally, though, were you doing, as mentioned a heavily stylized shoot, then you'd work with your colorist to create the LUT for the show and load that into the camera, but you really need to test it out. Most of the time, it'll make one shot look ok and subsequent shots look like crap
My general approach with the Alexa has been to create an ARRI look file for the monitor out -- I could use ARRI's Rec.709 look but I find it a bit harsh (the shadows are somewhat crushed-looking) and yellowish in the skin tones, so I create a look which to me is a bit more natural, slightly more muted. But when I shot that one episode of "Mad Men", I found that they were just monitoring with the ARRI Rec.709 look, which worked fine.
funny isnt it.. a big show like madmen.. they just keep it simple.. REC709 LUT out.. and something alot smaller with a couple of "experts ego,s" on the crew and there is such a fuss over tiny adjustments for viewing LUT,s !!!