Adobe Lightroom is meant primarily for editing (‘developing’, they call it) still photos. But there are a couple of cool tools hidden in Lightroom that us video folks can really use, and if you’re smart about your workflow, it’s not that hard to access the power of Lightroom in your video production pipeline.
I recently shot a series of interviews of some big-deal financial whizzes. The setup had us filming with two RED Dragons, and the main angle the agency client wanted had some issues. Specifically, there was light bouncing all over the place, from multiple directions, and we needed to use a lot of ND to get the look the client needed. Our mattebox and french flag (plus a large black flag) couldn’t help all that much- we got the dreaded chromatic aberration (purple fringing) monster in those shots.
Now, there are tutorials on how to remove CA (purple fringing) on the web. But they mostly involve choosing a color to replace the purple/green with, and well, that looks not so great. There are also plugins for After Effects that try to lessen CA, but they did not work in this case.
Lightroom rocked it, though. Buried under ‘Lens’ in the ‘Develop’ module is a way for you to eliminate purple fringing in your images. And it WORKS. Like MAGIC.
So, workflow? Import one frame of your clip. Set up a user preset in Lightroom where you remove the purple fringing. Save that preset. Then import your sequence (I like PNG sequences) into Lightroom, and choose the QuickDevelop setting to access your user preset. Export, and then re-import your sequence into After Effects. Blam! Purple fringing GONE, and in the most natural way I have ever seen.