Start Color Grading Like a Professional

After editing hundreds of videos something hit me.  I’m missing a big part of really getting the most out of my videos in terms of the a LOOK.  There is something about  the way a major motion picture looks compared to our home digital video shooters.  Okay yes they have a huge budget  and they are shooting on film and they have people who are masters at their craft of shooting and lighting.  But that isn’t all.  And the consumer market has great tools most enthusiast can get now.

I agree if you want a film look, shoot on film.  If you want a great shot you’ll need to light it correctly and compose it correctly.  There just isn’t any way around those truths.

Here comes the the BIG “BUTT”….

We have access to tools like never before and we also have access to professional who love spilling their secrets of the craft.  I’m very thankful for those two things.  It’s almost expected these days to have access to such information and that is kind of scary.  Who holds the power? RUN…!  Okay come back.

Start Asking More Questions!

How can I start color grading like a professional?  Is the question I asked bout a year ago when I noticed my videos lacked something.  I was shooting on many different camreas from the  ten thousand dollar range to the 200 dollar point and goes. Yet Joey Digital Iphone down the road was getting better images? What gives man?  How come some videos look so much better with a camera that fists in a pocket and makes phone calls and connects to the internet.  What gives?

Color Correction and Color Grading.

This started my rabbit hole adventure down the great color tunnel of doom.  The tool I use the most is Adobe Premiere as of this writing and I use the default color effects which come with the program.  Once you start asking around you’ll soon find there are many plug-ins and programs to help get a look.  The big question seems to be how can I get a film look?

I started asking the questions how can I get a more professional look? What are the professionals using?  There is sure to be a dedicated color tool used by the big time players, right? This lead me to the powerful color grading tool DaVinci Resolve, go figure a color tool named after an world class artist.

A correctly configured setup for a pro-grading studio might start at around 50 to 60 thousand dollars which is relatively inexpensive given the market and the technology of today but for little old me it’s not practical at this time to invest in the top gear because it will be long outdated before I learn the tool well enough to take a seat in the captions chair.  If you’re wonder how we can start to learn this tool like I did you’ll be happy to know there is a free version!

Yes the company recognizes people are shooting and producing great products everyday on a limited budget and mastering these tools to get the professional quality demanded by today’s industry.  Cha-Ching!  So these is away to get professional quality videos on a shoe string budget.  Let’s face it there always was its just a matter the Yellow Car Syndrome.  The syndrome of when your riding in a yellow car you all the sudden see every yellow car?  You become aware of what is around you because you’re focused on the item at hand.

Enough Already: Lets start color grading.  Below are video I’ve found to be very helpful in learning this tool called DaVinci Resolve.  If the video doesn’t play anymore it is because the user or sharing server took it down.


Keyword: Learn DaVinci Resolve (let the rabbit hole begin)

Nodes and Style


Which Video Editing Software Should I Use

Which Video Editor Should I Use

The one you can get access to the quickest and start editing with today. Are you looking for a specific software recommendation? The thing is it doesn’t matter. No really any system you have will have a basic video editor which you can use right now to start producing video for your content.
People starting putting videos on Youtube over a decade ago. So you can easily see every kind of recording style, editing no-nos, editing dos, and take a good guess the production value cost about as much as a sack of potatoes.

  • Windows uses Windows Live Movie Maker which is part of their essentials package now.
  • Iphone/tablets/pads: All have a video editor on them as well.
  • Linux operating systems have video editing software but I’d imagine less commonly used.
  • Apple OS X is the king of video editing in many people’s minds in the industry.

Start using the video editing software you have on your computer already. This way you can just start editing videos. There will be bigger questions you’ll start asking after some time passes and you’ve created a few dozen videos or so.  Like how can I start editing faster, what makes a good edit, and how can I produce better content in less time.  Also it’s important to start asking how you can use the 50/50 rule in editing.

The 50/50 rule is using your mouse and keyboard both during your editing process.  This comes in handy for increasing editing time.  Remember you’re not getting paid to edit, you’re getting paid to produce the content that brings in the money.  So really the faster and better you can edit over time the more time you have for other activities.  The software you use will allow you freedoms over other software but right not it’s not important to dwell on the curve isn’t as steep as you might think and in no time you’ll be producing content weekly.


Some Professional Video Editing Software:

Adobe has a 30 day free trial for their software. Subscription Based Now
Final Cut Pro might as well.
DaVinci Resolve Lite is free.
Avid Media Composer. Also going subscription based.


Many of these companies understand no one wants to pay thousands of dollars up front so they are letting people use the software for only a few dollars a month.

If you want some in depth training in video production, editing, getting the rankings, organization, seo,seq, and video copywriting, selling.  You might still be able to be part of the next class. The details are over on the membership site:


Flying the Glidecam Smooth Shooter

After using the HD-2000 glidecam sled for a few weeks handheld.  It was time to add in the flavor of love to the set.  The ying to the yang to so speak in smooth shooting gear.  Our office picked up the Glide Cam Smooth Shooter for our setup and below is the video I made of my first ever flight with the rig.  I’ve had no other training on the rig other than running around hand going hand held so this was a new experience.

We mostly shoot uncontrolled action and shoot on the sticks bu more and more we are running around stick free.  So after a few hours of training we’ll be sure to get this down nicely.

The camera used in the particular shoot was the Canon XA-25 and it was set to automatic mode.  I didn’t want to fuss with any setting for my first run.



Now when it comes time for training with the system.  I’m going to have to rely on youtube and vimeo for some workshop demos and build our own training.  Also below are a few references you might be intrested in if you’re going to pick one of these systems up.  It’s good to know the roots of the movements and the people that made this thing a standard hollywood production tool.


Check out these two clips from the show Science of the Movies:


Of course Steadycam is the big dogs while Glidecam is more for hobby/armature video.


The Truth About Life

The truth about life.  The truth is if you are reading this you already know the truth.

You know the world if filled with every single kind of personality combination there is to offer.


You know there are more ways than you can count to be the person you want to be but there are only a handful of things keeping you the way you are.

Life is absolutely way too short not to be someone you’re not, explore something new, try something different, get a little scared, cry, laugh, smile, love, hate, be mad, be grateful, be awesome, be poor, be rich, be wise, be stupid, be relaxed, get stressed, get attention, get away, get married, have kids, get sick, get healed, overcome, accomplish, stay stuck, hit rock bottom, climb to the top, and of course stay just the way you are if you feel at peace.
Life is just too short to.  There will never be enough time, the time is now.  Not tomorrow, not yesterday, not next week.  Today, today is the day you can do it all.


Spend on Adwords or SEO which is Cheaper

I’ve never heard anyone ask.  Hey what way can I take the longest to get some money hoping someone will stumble on my sales page?  Also I’ve never heard anyone who asked how can I waste the most time on getting a sale for my product?  But this is what I hear when I see or hear some ask these questions:

What is cheaper SEO or Adwords

Should I hire an SEO Specialist

How much will I lose with pay per click

Should I buy traffic or use SEO



Do you want fruit with your steak dinner or do you want vegetables?

Over and over the same questions get asked and the same poor advice gets repeated from people who’ve never done both.  SEO people will tell you how horrible PPC is and PPC people will tell you how long SEO takes so don’t count on it this year.

If you are considering price in your question of which method to go on i’ll assume you don’t have much of an advertising budget, right?   Well one that you think is good enough.  The truth is 5 dollars a month is good enough when it comes to PPC, pay per click, bing, adwords, whatever…Your five dollars can go a lot further in a month then 10 articles on some content you won’t rank for in that month for a product people are looking to buy.  It’s that simple.

I will tell you that SEO is not Cheaper versus Adwords.  Now if you want to learn how to use it and not waste a bunch of money you’re out of luck.  Learn a skill will take you time and money so just be comfortable with that up front.  If you want to hire an Adwords Manager you could and still be better off.

SEO is a buzz word.  Its ever fluid on the next big “trick, hack, market bust”.  People will always sell you the latest and greatest method of getting ranking.  But you already know what it is.  It’s everything you hate about what you already see.  What ever you see do the opposite.  Chances are you’ll be better off in the long run.

Pay Per Click will trump SEO for top rankings any day.  It will bring in sales to a product that is selling.  It will bring in traffic to a site with good information.  It will add readers to newsletters which are active.

Want to learn how to use pay per click?  Start with the the free education the platforms already gives you.