Color Grading with Media Composer and Symphony 6, Avid Worldwide Training’s newest publication, is designed for the intermediate to advanced Avid editor who wants to delve into the world of color correction and grading. It is the final book in the Avid Learning Series, published by Cengage Learning, and available today direct from the publisher and from major booksellers.
When scoping the project, we knew we wanted to craft a book that would cover both applications--Media Composer and Symphony--but also go beyond basic operational training to teach the student how to think like a colorist. As principal author, I’m an Avid expert and highly adept at color grading, but I don’t spend my days in a colorist chair. I knew that expertise can’t be faked, but it’s exactly what we wanted for our students.
Fortunately, not long before starting the book, I had the pleasure of meeting Patrick Inhofer, owner/colorist of Fini TV, and the man behind the successful Tao of Color training site. Patrick was the perfect addition to the project. He is the nicest guy, and it was a real pleasure to work with him. But most importantly, his collaboration infused the book with advanced grading techniques and practical advice on everything from setting up your grading suite to managing clients.
There are a few other things in particular that I’m really excited about with this new edition that I’ll share quickly.
First, all the footage is from the film AGENT-MX-Z3RO, sponsored by Avid Marketing. Many color correction courses give you a random series of images selected to illustrate a specific problem. Instead, in this class, you get to work through entire scenes. This is not only more realistic, but it gives you the chance to repeatedly grade similar shots within a scene to build muscle memory and speed. Plus, it gives you the real-world challenge of needing to match disparate shots to create a cohesive whole.
Second, with Media Composer and Symphony 6, Avid now supports the color grading panel, Artist Color. This gives users an unprecedented level of speed and intuitive operation – the difference is really night and day. We included training on how to use the Artist Color in this book, so it’s a complete package. Of course, we included all the tips and shortcuts that Avid has had for years for grading quickly using a mouse and keyboard. In color grading, speed is critical, both practically (to meet deadlines) and creatively. Working quickly you build momentum and keep your eyes fresh. It’s the difference between being successful or not. This book teaches you how.
Another element of this book is that, as I mentioned, it covers both Media Composer and Symphony, but does so in such a way that you can learn the entire grading process and workflow on either platform. In the Introduction, I outline the learning path for you, so you know exactly which lessons apply to you. But, beyond that, I give you in-depth tips and tricks for your platform specifically.
For example, Lesson 6 is dedicated to the real workflow advantages of working on Symphony. Symphony is about speed. It has a powerful set of tools that go well beyond just Secondary corrections, but its real power is in how you combine these through correction relationships, such as source-based corrections. Media Composer doesn’t have source-based corrections, but we teach Media Composer users an innovative workflow to get some of the same speed into their grading sessions using templates.
I could go on, but it’s better to just let you read the book yourself. In fact, we have a free chapter available for you to download right now. Lesson 2: Analyzing Images with Scopes.
As you can tell, we’re very excited to bring it to market. It’s a great course, and it is well-timed, especially for those customers who took advantage of Avid’s recent Symphony upgrade promotion, or Avid’s ongoing academic discounts.
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