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Color Correction Look Book: Creative Grading Techniques for Film and Video by Alexis Van Hurkman

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Chapter 21. Undertones

In visual perception a color is almost never seen as it really is—as it physically is. This fact makes color the most relative medium in art.

—Joseph Albers (1888–1976)

Undertones is the name I use for a particular commercial look that’s especially popular with promos and that has, by its use in features, become associated with big-budget filmmaking.

A tint or color wash is a color cast that you apply to the overall image, even though it may deliberately not affect the highlights or shadows of an image. An undertone differs in that it’s a color cast that you apply very specifically to a wedge of image tonality, often somewhere within the upper shadows of an image.

There are several different approaches you can take to creating ...

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