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Can't get good skin tones/exposure with G7

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by Duke Sweden, Sep 15, 2016.

  1. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    This is so friggin' frustrating. I've seen what the G7 is capable of but I just can't seem to nail a great exposure, and my skin tones are awful. A lot of orange, and gray areas for some reason. If I expose for the brightest area my darker areas have a lot of noise. If I expose for the midpoint in my frame the brights are blown out. I even tried shooting some footage this morning during the "Golden Hour". Absolutely awful. Tried the setting recommended by Noam Kroll for Cine V (for daytime shooting). No help.

    I've tried all of the profiles. Any suggestions?
     
  2. rbelyell

    rbelyell Mu-43 Veteran

    356
    Sep 15, 2013
    Mountains of NY
    first check your white balance settings and make sure youre on 'auto'. if that doesnt help, check your RAW results. i would suggest if they come out the same that there might be something wrong with your camera and it merits at least a call to tech support and probable return. if RAW results are good, then theres probably something amiss in your jpeg settings.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  3. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    Thanks for responding. I'm talking about video. I never shoot pictures. Also, I manually set white balance. At the very least I set it by Kelvin. Everything else in the shots look dead on except my skin tones (and as mentioned above, getting that right balance between over and underexposed.)
     
  4. stratokaster

    stratokaster Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 4, 2011
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Pavel
    I think the G7 is similar to the GX85 in that respect. I have noticed that you really have to slightly overexpose if you want great skin tones. Otherwise the skin looks pretty muddy with sorta brownish-grey appearance.
     
  5. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    Yeah, exactly. Brownish gray overtones. I guess I have to keep experimenting. Thanks for responding.
     
  6. DanS

    DanS Mu-43 Veteran

    391
    Mar 8, 2016
    Central IL
    it doesn't matter if it's video or stills, unless you made and a really funky picture profile, it's most likely your white balance.

    I use an ExpoDisc, and my white balance is always spot on.
    ExpoImaging ExpoDisc 2.0 82mm White Balance Filter EXPOD2-82 B&H

    if you shoot inside with artificial light, try and get all the sources homogenized. For example I have 14 light sources in my workshop and they are all 6500k halogens.
     
  7. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    Inside I have no problems, using 4 5500 K's in soft boxes and umbrellas. It's outside where I'm getting funky looks. I wish I had like a young woman with nice skin I could test on. My 62 year old biker face has seen better days ;-)

    I do use an 18% gray card to set my wb.

    I just tried another profile, "Profile", with specific settings a guy gave me whose video on youtube looks great. Rendering it now. I'll see how it looks shortly.

    EDIT: Maybe I'm being too self critical. Can you take a look at this quick test shoot? You don't have to watch the whole thing (it's short anyway). Watch it objectively without thinking about the skin tone and let me know if the skin tone grabs you as being too unnatural, or completely normal. Thanks either way.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2016
  8. DanS

    DanS Mu-43 Veteran

    391
    Mar 8, 2016
    Central IL
    That's a pretty demanding shot for any camera to get right. You have extreme blacks in the lower right, and then extreme whites on the tree in-front of the shed, not to mention your shirt. Your skin seems to have a hint of red, but that could easily be your skin color if you've been out in the sun all day.
     
  9. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    Hey, DanS. Yeah, I was really just concentrating on the skin tones, I wasn't trying to get the brights and darks within range. I just tweaked the skin tone using Second HSL in Premiere Pro and I'm really happy with the results. I forgot to mention previously but it was the inability to color correct my skin tones that was really annoying me. Anyway thanks for reaffirming my opinion. And, no, that's not sunburn. High blood pressure is more like it ;-)
     
  10. DanS

    DanS Mu-43 Veteran

    391
    Mar 8, 2016
    Central IL
    It's mainly about getting your settings right, when i get home this evening, I will set down and list out how I have my G7 set, as their are some setting i still forget about.

    This is my G7 with the Oly 60 macro lens and a 2 ND filters stack (4 stops).
     
  11. DanS

    DanS Mu-43 Veteran

    391
    Mar 8, 2016
    Central IL
    depending on how the camera is set, changes in the footage can effect skin tones, I.Dynamic for example can mess stuff up royally.
     
  12. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    Out of curiosity, what lens are you using? That definitely does have an effect on colour, but probably shouldn't be huge...

    Without seeing you in person, I can't actually tell if those are accurate skin tones, but they didn't look unreasonably bad to me, per se.

    Some people seem to have had good experience with Tiffen Ultra Contrast filters to squeeze the dynamic range into the middle a bit, might not require as much fiddling with settings to tame highlights and it mutes the skintones a bit.
     
  13. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    Get out, you got a trained butterfly!?! :clapping:
    I have all the artificial assistance, like iResolution, etc., turned off.

    I would seriously appreciate you sending me your settings. Thanks a lot.

    Turbofrog, my skintones are far from fresh faced, but I definitely don't have as much orange, gray and red as I was getting in my footage. I have to admit this latest test shoot using Portrait is the best result I've gotten so far. Oh, and I'm using the 14-42 mm kit lens.

    Thanks again for responding, fellas. Much appreciated!
     
  14. Bif

    Bif Mu-43 Veteran

    380
    May 28, 2012
    San Angelo TX
    Bruce Foreman
    Duke, skin tones look fairly normal to me. I'm a retired portrait photographer so skin tones are pretty important to me.

    Could be the rendition of your monitor. Try downloading some calibration images and see how they look to you. Here's two I use for "eyeball" monitor calibration:

    http://www.ghacks.net/wp-content/uploads/2008/01/monitor_check_calibration.jpg

    I don't personally follow the contrast 100% and brightness 25% he recommends on this first one. I just try to get it so I can see all the steps on the gray scale.

    http://www.digitalmasters.com.au/Calibration_Print_Adobe_RGB.jpg
     
  15. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    Hey Bif! Thanks for that. Interestingly I do see every shade from white to black including a slight difference between 95 and 100. And I eyeballed the settings on this tv, as I always have. I have my PC hooked up to a 32" 720p HDTV so obviously I'm not gonna get a true idea of what my footage looks like, but then again, I'm not a pro, I just do this for fun. But other people's videos look great on this tv so, I don't know. I guess if I'm color correcting on an improperly calibrated monitor, I shouldn't expect blockbuster movie results ;-)

    I also appreciate your opinion on my skin tones. As I mentioned I took that previous video and tweaked the skin tones using the HSL Secondary correction in Lumetri and I'm now getting the best skin tone I've ever gotten. I look forward to experimenting with DanS' settings later.

    Thanks again, Bif. Nothing like getting advice from a pro.
    Cheers!
     
  16. Joe Smith

    Joe Smith Mu-43 Regular

    124
    Mar 6, 2016
    I think you are aware that this is an extremely difficult lighting situation: Sometime direct sunlight, sometimes light through the green leafs, sometimes you're in plain shadow lighted only by reflections from I don't know what etc. There's a reason why professional movie makers always work with controlled artificial light.
     
  17. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    95% of the time when I'm doing exposure tests I'm directly behind my house with no partial shadows. Either I'm in direct sunlight or solid shade. This example video is kind of an anomaly, I don't usually shoot in that corner of my property. I do realize I was shooting in extreme circumstances, but I wanted to get myself in sunlight and shade without having to change camera angles. As it turned out, with this new setting I used I got good skin tone, so I posted the video here.

    But, like with the others who responded, I appreciate you confirming some of my suspicions.
     
  18. DanS

    DanS Mu-43 Veteran

    391
    Mar 8, 2016
    Central IL
  19. Duke Sweden

    Duke Sweden Mu-43 Regular

    66
    Aug 9, 2016
    Duke Sweden
    Thanks, bro! I'll report back.