Product Review: Page (1) of 2 - 10/06/08 Email this story to a friend. email article Print this page (Article printing at MyDmn.com).print page facebook

DVShade Easylooks 2.0.1

DVShade's Easylooks is a great plug-in for users who want a good, simple color grading application By Kevin McAuliffe

As you are probably aware, Mike Jones and I have been in a bit of a color grading mood lately. If you haven't checked out Mike's articles about DIY color grading, check out article one here, and article two here. Most recently, I wrote about why I think all editors need Magic Bullet's Looks, as it is an excellent color grading application that works with After Effects, Final Cut Pro/Motion, Avid Media Composer and Premiere Pro.

If you want to check out that article, you can check it out here. I thought that I would round out my color grading mood by taking a look at DVShade's Easylooks 2.0.1 for Final Cut Pro/Motion and After Effects.

Installation
Easylooks 2.0.1 (EL) was created using FX Factory Pro's architecture, so you will need to download FX Factory Pro, which is totally free from the Noise Industries website. Once you have downloaded EL, simply double click on the .fxpack icon, and it will automatically load into FX Factory Pro. Since you are now ready to start color grading, let's jump into FCP, and see what we have to work with.



What you get and how it works
Something that I want to mention right off the bat is that most people will immediately think that EL is a Final Cut Pro/Motion plug-in only, but it is not. With the update to version 2.0.5 of FX Factory Pro, Adobe's After Effects CS4 is now supported as a host application, which opens up DVShade to a whole new user base, and is a very smart move on Noise Industries' part, as it gets plug-ins in your hands as soon as AE CS4 launches.

For my review, I'm going to look at DV Shade through the FCP interface, but the Motion and AE interfaces will be virtually similar. Much like any other plug-in, select the clip you want to apply DV Shade to, and navigate to EFFECTS>VIDEO FILTERS>DVSHADE>DVSHADE EASYLOOKS 2.0.1. EL is a color grading plug-in designed to quickly and easily give you the look that you and your producer/director are looking for, and what better way to do that is to give you 32 presets right off the bat.

Even if you don't know anything about color grading, you can probably find a look that you like in the presets and tweak from there. Here is a preset called "ei8ht," which is a take-off of the look from the movie "Se7en."

It is a subtle, but effective color grade that took about three seconds to apply and looks great. Now, obviously presets are great, but everyone is going to need to get in and either fine tune their looks or create their own from scratch, so DVShade has broken the plug-in down into very simple straightforward sections that follow a logical path to help you achieve the specific look you are going for. Here's how they have broken down EL.

  • Basic
  • Black & White Diffusion
  • Tint
  • Gradient
  • Techni
  • Color Temperature


BASIC
The BASIC section essentially gives you controls over your brights, darks and saturation with controls for Lift, Gain, Gamma, Contrast and Saturation.  

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Related Keywords:color grading, DV shade, video editing, NLE, motion graphics, visual effects

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