Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Building a film look PowerGrade

In this article I will develop a Film Look PowerGrade for Resolve, which you can download and freely use on your own projects.

This is the last of four articles. In the first I conducted a practical test of Lumix S5 footage and stabilisation. The second article walked through an ACES workflow for DaVinci Resolve. The third article explained the film look and how to set up your Lumix S camera to shoot optimal footage. 

Check out the video below, which compares the plain grading in my original installment with the new Film Look. Then read on for details.

Monday, May 29, 2023

The film look and Lumix S cameras

This is the third of four tutorials on optimising DaVinci Resolve for Panasonic Lumix footage. In the first article I conducted a practical test of Lumix S5 footage and stabilisation. The second article walked through an ACES workflow for DaVinci Resolve. This post will provide specific camera settings for you to use. The final article develops a Film Look PowerGrade that you can use in your Resolve projects.

We begin by asking what makes the film look in the first place.

Monday, May 29, 2023

ACES workflow in DaVinci Resolve

This article explains how to set up an industry-standard ACES workflow in Resolve. This removes the need for colour space transforms (CSTs) and look-up tables (LUTs) while ensuring consistent colour processing from beginning to end. There is really no need to use any other workflow.

Monday, May 29, 2023

Sample video from the Lumix S5

With the summer weather upon us, I took out my Lumix S5 to shoot some random video, in order to get a feel for the footage, how it takes a grade, etc. This ended up also being a good test of the built-in stabilisation. Read on for some practical information.

This is the first of four tutorials on optimising DaVinci Resolve for Panasonic Lumix footage. In the second article I describe how to set up an industry-standard ACES workflow in Resolve. The third post explains the film look and provides specific settings for Lumix cameras. The final article develops a Film Look PowerGrade that you can use in your Resolve projects.

One short trip to the canal turned into quite an extensive tutorial series!

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Lumix S5 video noise comparison

I recently performed a rough-and-ready test of the noise performance of video shot on the Lumix S5. My aim was to compare the Natural and V-Log profiles at four different ISO settings in very low light. This last condition must be emphasised since the harsh conditions are not typical of those where you might otherwise shoot V-Log. 

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Why I'm loving the Lumix S5

It's the photos.

Here is a shot SOOC (straight out of camera) which for me means only the slightest development in Affinity Photo. The detail, colours, and rendering are superb. Trees. 20-60mm kit lens at 20mm.


Sunday, May 14, 2023

Lumix S ergonomics and menu, oh dear

I need to rant about the Lumix S5 interface. As a hybrid photography/video camera, this inherits all the worst features from photo cameras, which are stuck in the1993 era of nested menus and cryptic labels. This system is confusing to use and lacks essential features.

Before commenting on the menus, I will briefly examine the physical interface, since both are entwined.

I will end with a list of recommendations that I trust Panasonic will read.

Saturday, May 13, 2023

Low light photography and a rebuttal to a strange article

The other day I stumbled upon a strange article entitled "Micro Four Thirds cameras are better at Low Light" by Mark Wieczorek. And since the Medium comment system makes coherent responses impossible, I decided to post a response here. This allows me a longer and more thoughtful response. 

I will also present some test images, so read on for that.

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Panasonic Lumix S: camera models and video mode comparison

Since 2019 Panasonic have released seven models in their Lumix S camera line. Read on for a handy comparison of features and video modes. You can find exhaustive feature lists on other sites, including Panasonic's own pages. Here I provide a compact overview of key differences between the models (PDF file). I trust this makes your decisions easier!

Tuesday, May 09, 2023

The correct way to think about focal length

Wow, that title sounds a little click-baity. Maybe I should start my own YouTube channel telling everyone what to think! Instead, I'll just deliver information, in the following handy chart. You'll need to click through to see a larger version. And read on for an explanation.

Field of View versus focal length
Sunday, May 07, 2023

Adapting lenses to the Panasonic Lumix DC-S5

leaf on the wall

One of the advantages of a mirrorless camera system is that older SLR, rangefinder, and cinema lenses can be readily adapted to the new bodies. This opens up a world of optical possibilities! 

This article explains how to adapt lenses and what settings to use on the Lumix S5 to optimise this process. Plus I'll share photos gathered using one of my favourite Pentax K-mount lenses.

Saturday, May 06, 2023

Photo style settings for the Panasonic Lumix DC-S5

The Lumix DC-S5 provides a large number of Photo Styles and Photo Effects. These options are ideal for those who prefer to get their look in-camera, shooting directly to JPG. There are Landscape and Portrait settings, several different Monochrome models, Cross-Processing, Toy Effect, Low and High Key, Sepia, and even settings termed Fantasy, Expressive, Retro, and Old Days. 

Now, like many, I prefer to capture a malleable image in RAW and then post-process on a computer, as required. But I cannot ignore the Photo Styles, since this setting also determines the recorded gamma curve.

So, what are the best settings for photography? Should we use Standard or Natural? Or should we be shooting photos in Cinelike or V-Log, originally designed for videography? This article will investigate. 

Friday, May 05, 2023

Low-light performance of Panasonic Lumix DC-S5

This article will examine the low-light performance of the Lumix DC-S5, first by presenting some sensor statistics, then by examining photographs taken at different ISO values. My personal goal is to compare this to the Olympus PEN E-P5 I was previously using. I expect an improvement, but how big will it be?

Thursday, May 04, 2023

A new chapter in my photographic journey

Rin-Rin on the Panasonic S5 at ISO 320, Lumix 35mm at f/2.8

I started in photography back in the eighties. As an adjunct to writing newspaper reviews of concerts, I learned how to shoot and develop film. In this way the editor could assign only one person to the story, instead of needing both a reporter and a photographer. Back then we didn't care what brand of camera we used. I recall a Pentax and some 50mm lens... that's all! The only thing that mattered was "does the lens fit the body?"

Compare this with today's internet environment, where the smallest detail of every camera is subject to scrutiny. People abandon one system for another over what are often trivial concerns. YouTube is all about being "right". 

That's not my agenda here. Instead, the following overview of my camera systems is about gaining perspective. I now have a brand new purchase that I trust will offer me new opportunities. It's not about the flex; it's about the journey.