Trying to figure out cinematic colour grading

Last night the wife and I went to the cinema to sea a new movie called Glass. In short, it’s a pretty decent movie and probably worth a watch.

Clearly this post isn’t about the movie being good or not. No, very quickly I started to notice the colour grading was really different to what I’ve noticed before. (I’m sad and like to figure out colour grading, don’t judge). I’m unsure if I figured it out correctly, but there seemed to be blue added t the shadows and blacks, magenta in the midtones, and a very slight yellow in the highlights.

Now, there was definitely another grade of sorts going on, and I’m pretty sure it was a horizontal gradient. The gradient was hard to pick up at first, but when the movie progressed to a room with grey walls it became quite obvious. If you can imagine a rectangle split into 8ths, the first 4 8ths were yellow, the next 3 were magenta, and the final 8th was yellow again.

Throwing this gradient with the colour grade made for a pretty complex colouring, but it really stood out to me. I have personally never thought about adding a gradient into my own colouring and has given me a few ideas to play with with my next shoot.

Here’s a rough idea of what the horizontal grade looked like

Here’s a rough idea of what the horizontal grade looked like

I used one of my own shots to show a little idea of what the grade looked like with the gradient.

I used one of my own shots to show a little idea of what the grade looked like with the gradient.