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February 2, 2013

Film Looks the Easy Way: FilmConvert Now Supports Canon C300 and Arri Alexa, BMCC Coming Soon

A solid color grade can very quickly take the edge off an image that looks "too digital." If you don't have much time to spend on said color grade, but you'd like to get a great look very easily, a film LUT that attempts to recreate some of the magic we get from Kodak and Fuji stocks could serve you well. We've discussed FilmConvert a bit before, but basically it's either a standalone program or a plugin for the major Apple and Adobe products that uses the color science of the specific camera you're using in order to precisely match the film stocks they have in their system. Now they've introduced another update, this time including support for the Canon C300 and the Arri Alexa.

Here is Sebastian from cinema5D testing FilmConvert with some Canon C-Log footage from the C100:

A little bit about his workflow:

In the video above I graded a short clip that I shot on a Canon C100 during a recent project. You can see the subtle difference between ungraded / graded / and filmconverted.
The C100 is a very underestimated camera. It is very ergonomic to use, fast, and has a powerful and lowlight capable sensor. Despite the AVCHD compression (you can see the compression artefacts in this very demanding source clip on vimeo: LINK) a lot can be achieved (We'll have a more detailed look at it soon).

Since FilmConvert works in a very specific way, you have to make sure you shoot in a color profile that is supported in the program. In this case, it seems officially that for this update they are only supporting Canon Log on the C300, but the C100/C300/C500 should all look very similar since they share the same sensor and similar color science.

You're never going to perfectly replicate celluloid in a digital realm, but with software like FilmConvert, you can come very, very close, especially since the way they are achieving the look is catered to each camera. If you're tossing on a LUT like this, it's probably because you want to get to a look you're happy with rather quickly, and from the results I've seen, FilmConvert does it as well as, if not better, than any other plugin or program out there. I also think it's worth mentioning that these looks are useful not just for people who want something that feels like film, but they can give you great skin tones immediately and save you time in post from having to create this sort of thing from scratch.

Since they have to make separate profiles, it's not fully supported with every camera out of the box, but there is word that they have an update coming for the Blackmagic Cinema Camera:

The C300/Alexa update is only for the stand-alone program, but support for the plugins will be coming soon. If you own the software, head on over to the FilmConvert download page, or try it out for free (with a watermark) to sample the goods.

Links:

[via cinema5D]

Your Comment

33 Comments

Not again...

February 2, 2013

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Soosan Khanoom

You cant be THAT mad, can you?

February 3, 2013

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Natt

I love Filmconvert. I add it to my footage and then I just need to make small tweaks. It has really become my go to plugin. Glad to see they're supporting more cameras. I don't think everyone will like it but I love it.

February 2, 2013

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Lol

February 2, 2013

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jordan

I see nothing wrong with this article.

February 2, 2013

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Xiong

I own this. Its brilliant. And they've added new cams, so why not report that?

February 2, 2013

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marklondon

Been coming here for a few months now first time i've seen this article please keep up the good work, rather see 3 articles covering the same thing than no new ones, it not like it's becoming some unorganized mess where things are hard to find I mean the oldest article on the main page dates back too 4-5day's ago and info changes quickly/easy too miss something

February 2, 2013

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Chris Lambert

Joe, is Filmconvert a good tool for adding a degree of film "damage" to a shot, or is it exclusively for the more subtle effect of giving it shots a film aesthetic? It's a brilliant product, either way; I'm just curious about how far you can push it.

February 2, 2013

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David S.

This isn't really as good at destroying the footage, more for giving a slight effect, though some of the grainier profiles are noticeable. I'd probably use something else if I was really trying to make it look like damaged film.

February 2, 2013

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Joe Marine
Editor-at-Large
Shooter/Writer/Director
287

I don't understand why people act like they're being forced to read these articles by gun point.

February 2, 2013

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>:D ... 0:)

February 2, 2013

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Dave Kendricken
Writer
Freelancer
32

I find this kind of articles absolutely useful!

February 2, 2013

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Thank you for this article. Is anyone aware if the Sony F3 is supported?

February 2, 2013

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Steve

Not yet, but I would imagine it's coming. There's technically nothing stopping you from using footage from any camera with it, it just may not be the result you're looking for.

February 2, 2013

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Joe Marine
Editor-at-Large
Shooter/Writer/Director
287

Do the plugins support any Sony Cameras? FS-700/100 etc?

February 2, 2013

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I'm really enjoying to use film convert. It's easier than applying a proper LUT in Resolve. For faster projects I just tweak it a little since my camera is the R1MX. The results are very, very convincing.

February 2, 2013

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Alex Mand

Don't worry, Joe. Ask me - and you're doing a great job!

I've picked up quite a few things from your articles that I would have missed otherwise. There are articles on this site that don't interest me as much - but it's easy to skip those and pick the (for me) interesting ones :)

A bit feedback more on the topic of this article:
I'd like to see some kind of article on this site with tips about how to speed up the editing/post/color grading processes. Preferably with a bit of tips of generic do's and don'ts, perhaps going through examples of what was done in a certain film project and what the reasoning behind a certain choice was. Learning by doing is great, and learning from what other people have done can be as interesting.

Personally, I have a still photography background and I've always had a great interest in film, now trying to learn more about it. What that means to me is that I'm fairly comfortable with framing, exposing, lighting.
On the other hand it also means wild experimentation when considering how to make cuts, figuring out how to progress from shot to shot as well as getting around with color grading - I know what I love in one certain frame, but footage and light change over time when filming. But the process often is slow and sometimes requires rethinking from scratch.

February 2, 2013

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Appreciate the support. As far as editing, you might want to think about picking up Walter Murch's In the Blink of An Eye. It's basically everything behind the theory of editing, why to cut when you cut and what to look for. I know for color correction many have recommended Alexis Van Hurkman's Color Correction Handbook.

I'll try to look out for tutorials like that, and ideally we'll put together more of our own as we staff up better.

February 2, 2013

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Joe Marine
Editor-at-Large
Shooter/Writer/Director
287

Thanks Joe I;m shopping for a book on editing theory and as for color correction I recently bought The Art and Technique of Digital Color Correction by Steve Hullfish I think it's a good book on the subject as well Check it out if you get a chance.

February 7, 2013

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Gary Simmons

Virus on the site linked above: Exploit Blackhole ( PeterKon 02.3.13 @ 5:40AM For grading tutorials check http://www.fxphd.com/fxphd/courseInfo.php )

February 7, 2013

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Great to hear that. Film convert is freakin great. Shot a short on 7D few years ago and just recently tried and was able to add the 70's vintage film look to it- https://vimeo.com/58652518

cheers!

February 2, 2013

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Paul D

I have nothing against FilmConvert, but this C100 video example seems to be highly compressed with severe macroblocking. I even watched the clip directly on Vimeo.

From the footage I've seen with the BMCC, I've noticed that the footage has its own sort of grain to it. That's not a knock against the C100, just my own personal observation. So I don't know if adding grain to BMCC footage would be beneficial.

To be honest, the general public, and especially the youth of today could care less about film grain, or even the film look. I'm seeing a trend where people actually prefer the slightly sped up and nauseating motion that the 120hz-240hz sets produce. They think that more "smooth" = better :(

February 2, 2013

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Some Guy

I was pretty glad that Joe posted this. I like the software but don't own it and I still like to be informed on any updates to it since I don't visit the site that often. Thanks Joe.

February 2, 2013

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I love Filmconvert. I used it on a music video I shot today on Canon T3I.
Watch it here: https://vimeo.com/58804628
I wish they would add a setting for VisionTech PP.

February 3, 2013

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Worried about nothing. Just wonder why you felt the need to do that.
I'm not saying what you do is worthless - there's a good reason this site is one of my main bookmarks.

February 3, 2013

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Fresno Bob

Because I work very hard on this site, and respect everyone who comments here, and that's all we're looking for in return.

Let's move on at any rate, as we have a pretty clear comment policy...

February 3, 2013

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Joe Marine
Editor-at-Large
Shooter/Writer/Director
287

@ Joe: Please keep up the good work. I´ve read a lot of (film)blogs in the past years till now ... 90% of my blog-reading-time is here!
btw: filmconvert is a very lovely tool

February 3, 2013

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chris d

Thanks Joe. I own the Stand-Alone software and could have missed this without your article.

I can't wait for the BMCC and would like to do a comparison between going to Resolve and this quick FilmConvert way. Just love the USER-FRIENDLY interface it has!

:) my BMCC is arriving tomorrow!! wuhoo!!

February 3, 2013

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Looks like a very useful tool. Thanks Joe, can't wait to see the BMCC version.

February 3, 2013

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i find this is needful ! Thanks ! !

February 4, 2013

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Needful article.Thanks ! !

February 4, 2013

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For deteriorated film effect, FILMLOOKS.COM is way to go. Great for grindhouse look.

May 23, 2013

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