Monday, March 08, 2010

Automatic remote color corrections with FirstLight and Dropbox

CineForm color and 3D corrections tool FirstLight is completely database driven, with no need to render any element. Yet we want to share color corrections and other database changes we do need to export something, don't we? I've just post my second tutorial video on vimeo that shows how to share you color correction automatically using Dropbox (

CineForm FirstLight color correction through Dropbox from David Newman on Vimeo.

Best to use the link above see it in HD.

The tutorial demonstates a custom utility that help that can be downloaded from here. Unzip and double click on this VBScript to move your LUTs and color corrections into your Dropbox folder.

Sharing color database information automatically among editing station is a feature CineForm has planned for some time. Yet finding the development time had put this project off, until we realized that Dropbox offers most of the base features we needed, and for free. The one thing it doesn't do is resolve the conflict if multiple users are changing the sample clips color/3D info at the same time, there is no priority or check-in systems with Dropbox. Yet this issue can be avoiding through the user practice of branching color databases, as I show in the tutorial. Users can work on their own branch and the "check-in" is simple the email/hand-off that saying my new stuff in is in data "x-y-z".

The reason I performed this demo using the beta version 4.3, is we made one subtle change to accommodate the Dropbox sharing. The histogram, overlays and 3D display mode features (which I sure to put in an upcoming video demo) were linked in the database within early versions, this meant a user enabling these features could remotely change those settings on another users system. While the branching practice above fixes this, I didn't want one user's render messed up by another user turning on histograms -- Imagine the support nightmare. Version 4.3 is now available.

Get a free Dropbox account with this link.