Color Timing: Before and After

I’m trying to wrap out APPOINTMENT IN VANCOUVER from the Big Mac.  In the rumble, I found Before & After moments from film.  They are awesome evidence of the magic of color timing at In a Place Post.

The “Befores” represent our untreated, raw footage.  The “Afters” are the result of colorist Moritz Fortmann.  Moritz worked expertly with my cinematographer and I to achieve a certain look for the story. It was a joy to collaborate with him and see our visions become realities.

Because we were dealing with media from a variety of sources, a lot of the correction was about making the footage look uniform.  In general, we crushed the blacks, made skin tones consistent, unified the “worn-out” look of still photos, and added grads to the landscape shots.  Befores are on top of the Afters.

Our most creative work appears in a sequence in which Casey recounts the story of his first big win (’91 World Junior Championships).  The Before is on the left; After on the right.  We used footage that I shot of a mountain and sky from a chairlift — footage we had originally thought we had no use for.  However, when married to Casey’s narration, the visual looked as if it was through Casey’s eyes.

Casey describes transcending his nerves and finding a Zen “zone” to race.  His skiing became effortless and graceful.  Visually, we cut to helmet cam footage of a lone skier gliding through gates like a bird in the clouds.  This footage was shot on a completely different camera and at a much lower quality than the sky shot.

We made these shots appear to be from the same place and time by imbuing them the same style.  But more importantly, we told our story by creating a dreamy, ethereal look that complimented Casey’s story of composed confidence.

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