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Adobe Premiere Pro CC - Essentials Training

Adding a LUT & Look to video in Premiere Pro

Daniel Walter Scott

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All right, in this video we're actually going to apply some Luts and Looks ourselves. It will be a bit clearer why they're the same but different. So I've got my wedding video sequence open. I'm going to be-- it doesn't matter which one but I want to see a person. Either this one or that one, or whatever. It's probably best to make sure that the Look doesn't make the person into an alien, or some wrong color. 

So I'm going to use a person, I'm going to open up my Lumetri Color. If you can't find it, it's under 'Window', 'Lumetri Color'. Yours probably looks a little bit more like this. Now why I say Luts and Looks are similar, a Lut is a lookup table, and a Look is just a shortened version of that. Just so you know, a Lut is kind of more of a universal term. People talk about Luts all the time, doesn't matter what program you're using, but a Look is what Premiere Pro have decided to call it. 

The weird thing is, they've got spaces for both. So you can input a Lut here, they got a few built in. So I've got my track selected, or my clip selected, and work through a couple. Now go back to 'None', that's my Lut, and the Look goes into this creative section here. So what we'll do is we'll click the word 'Basic Correction', just to tidy it all up; ah, safety. And under Creative there's the Look, it's just short for Lookup Table. Why have they got them in two different places? Basically Look is something that Premiere Pro does. There's a few other things about it that make it special, but they're out of the scope of what we need to know now, but the cool thing about it is, Premiere Pro's gone and made a bunch of presets for us, whereas in the past you'd have to download a Lut from somebody and load it in. 

The other strange thing, and why they're so similar is you can load a custom Lut, that you've downloaded from some videographer that you really like, or some website that's got free Lut downloads. You can browse and load them in, which we'll do in a little bit, but you can also do the exact same thing in Basic Correction. So you can browse and load them in. The real big difference between the two is that, under Creative there's some presets, whereas under Basic Correction there's some standard camera stuff, but there is not the kind of wide gamut of awesomeness. 

You have to go and find them, but you can load them both in, in the same places. The other thing to note, and the difference is, I guess it's good to get clear about it. Wasn't sure how much detail to go into. So if your brain's broken you can skip to the next video, but the other difference is, basically these are fixed, get applied in order that they appear. So if I do a Lut here, then start adjusting the color, it's adjusting the exposure of the Lut. So that's been applied, and then I'm doing stuff to that Lut, to mess around with it, whereas the other way around, if I go to 'None', what's happening is, if I mess around with the color here, get this right, I apply this creative thing afterwards. 

So I'm applying this Look after the fact. So once before, then you correct for color, and then doing the Look is afterwards, and I prefer this method, afterwards. I like to leave the lights alone, do my color correction, get it how I want, make it look good, we'll just smash on, on auto, then close down Basic Correction, go to Creative, and then pick a Look. 

Now since we've gone down this rabbit hole, one last thing is, often Luts are there to fix cameras. So say you got a camera, and you are shooting-- a specific camera, these are all camera names. So say you're shooting with this Alexa one here. They will give you a Lut to correct for it. So it might be you shooting something called Raw or Log, and they say, "All right, you've shot this footage, we've got this special Lut for you to make it the absolute best it can be." You can go find your camera manufacturer, and apply it to your footage, and it will just make it look more normal, or correct any sort of issues that that particular camera or lens has. 

Often Luts are technical fixes. And what people did in the past is they went, "Oh, if I mix this, you know, I'm using Alexa camera but, let's say I'm using this Phantom Lut on top of it, what happens?", And you kind of mix them up, and people get excited by the different look you got from mixing up Luts. Brain melting. 

So it's generally a little more of a technical thing, and then Looks are just effects that you can apply, like Instagram. I keep using Instagram, I know. I'll stop doing that. Now we're going to look at applying these things. You've kind of seen me do it already. So we're going to ignore the Luts, you can use those, no problem, but under Creative it's quite handy, because you can kind of just move through these. You can either use a drop-down, you got to have a clip selected, and just, you can use the drop-down and go, "Oh, I wonder what blue ice looks like." It's 'blue'y and icy, or you can kind of move through it. 

You can kind of see down the bottom, it gives you a preview of what you're up to in this list. Then you click in the middle of it, and it applies it to the clip you have selected. So, yeah. I do a lot of this, right click, right click, right click. Because the thumbnail's not big enough for me. You might be fine with the thumbnail, gives you a good general sense of it, you can kind of get closer, you're like…

The other things that are important for working with Looks is the intensity, because sometimes you're like, "Actually I like that but it's just too strong," so I'm going to lower it down. You can decide to double down on it and make it 200%, or lower it right down, just so it's like a little hint. There's some ones in here that are quite, like Matrix. Matrix has a really specific color grade. Especially the green one is pretty clear, it's always that murky green. You can decide how murky green you want it to be, but it's that Matrix movie look. 

There's a bunch of other ones in there as well. Now let's say you do like-- I'm going to go to-- I like this one here, the Bleach HDR, for this particular wedding, I don't know, it's a Look. The problem with these is that, you're going to look back in five years, and go, "Oh, geez." Go into that Bleach HDR phase. Your client's going to have preferences as well. Fashion's going to change, so looks change as well. The thing though is to give it a good kind of-- is it-- how does it look? You're going to find a good part of the footage, I think that looks good. And you can turn it on and off by ticking next to Creative. 

You don't actually have to click that word. Just click the tick on and off; before, after. You see, it's a very distinctive look. I quite like it, that's the one I picked for this course anyway, but a picture, I'll be looking back, going, "Geez." Way too much Bleach HDR in my editing life. 

The other thing you might need to know is, under 'Look', you can go, scroll all the way to the top, there's like a little slider there. You can go back to 'None', if you need to set it back to none. I'm going to go back to Bleach HDR, up to you. Now it is not really a class exercise, I just want you to, after this video is finished, just go through, just start toggling through and have a little look. What do you think works for this wedding, there's no right or wrong. Obviously Bleach is right, and whatever you pick is wrong, but pick something, it doesn't matter for this course, pick something you like, you can carry on with it, and I'll see you in the next video.