British self-described “filmmaker, lens whacker and DeLUTs” guy James Miller released his 200-strong V-Log L-savvy cinematic 3D LUTs set for the Panasonic Lumix GH4 and GH4R hybrid cameras earlier this year. And they look amazing – I am trying them out at the moment. But don’t forget Mr Miller’s considerable collection of previously released, pre-V-Log L 3D LUTs for Rec. 709 footage too.
The utility and beauty of the other DeLUTs LUT sets are reminders that there is plenty of life left yet in non-V-Log L photo styles on the GH4 camera, whether you choose Cinelike D, Cinelike V, Neutral, Portrait or Standard, or whatever of the many custom variants might be flavor of the week. Or most appropriate to the job in hand.
From where I am standing – yes I stand to work whenever possible or permitted – 3D Looks LUTs are taking over the planet. The moviemaking planet that is.
The reasons are clear. 3D LUTs are a fast, non-destructive way to transform your footage from what is often mundane or too-familiar looks to something much more expressive. And the affordability of most commercial LUT collections can’t be argued with either.
With so many LUT vendors of all sizes and backgrounds entering the market now, of all shapes and sizes, I am starting to see a range of patterns and approaches. DeLUTs stems from Mr Miller’s current career as a cinematographer and moviemaker in the UK, coming from a background in print reprographics for high end magazines.
“Etching off dots for colour correcting,” he told me. He then moved on to desktop publishing aka DTP, and from there to in-house photography.
“I've used LUTs ever since the mid 90s but it's only this March I got round to selling them,” he explained. Such an intriguing work history surely created deep understanding of what 3D LUTs can do, technically and creatively.
I had the pleasure of working with some other DTP pioneers and in-house reprographics geniuses in London some years ago as well as some truly amazing photographers and directors and photographers-turned-directors whose styles were anything but naturalistic.
Some of the LUTs in Mr Miller’s England-inspired, England-named Set 1, 2, 3 and Set 4 collections immediately reminded me of the looks those other moviemakers aimed for in their high end advertising work.
I couldn’t help sitting down and thinking about England when I walked into our most popular local eaterie, GH4 in hand, DeLUTs Set 4 in mind. Hence these still frames on this page, evocatively named after some of the London suburbs I often frequented during my several times living there.
But given that Australian cities and urban culture, as some cultural pundits inform us, is a mix of Britain and the United States, I have a certain partiality to Mr Miller’s DeLUTs New York Set. There is something Sydney about them, or perhaps even Perth when I first lived there in its innermost inner city suburb before it was radically gentrified. [bctt tweet=”James Miller’s DeLUTs Set 4: Add a London flavor to your footage fast & easy with 3D LUTs.”]
One thing is for sure, shooting and showing my street photographs in both cities often brought accusations from the arts pundits that I was trying to make Australia look like America. Nothing could be further from the truth. At that time I had never set foot in the United States much less studied the look of its urban agglomerations.
Apologies about all the illustrations on this page – I just couldn’t help myself, I was so excited by all the intriguing look and feel variations contained in DeLUTs Set 4.. Time to shoot some more footage, Cinelike D and V-Log L. I'm off to the city where the action is, GH4 loaded up with my largest SDXC card and more in reserve.
(cover photo credit: snap from Karin Gottschalk)