Here’s a fascinating video by the folks at Wired about the Stunning Evolution of Color in Film and movies. It takes you through the incredible journey that movies have taken to go from black and while films, to full color movies we have and take for granted today.
Movies used to be shot on black and white film, and projected on poor quality screens. It took a long time for filmmakers to find out a way to shoot on color film. Before that, filmmakers used to painstakingly paint their films, frame-by-frame, to get a pseudo feel of color for the audiences.
Today, cameras can shoot insanely high-quality color footage, on digital media, and projectors can even project HDR on screens. We’ve come a long long way since the old days of black and white films indeed.
Before they figured out how to shoot film in color, filmmakers were painting their footage, frame-by-frame. Fast forward a century and the HDR technology available to colorists means we are to see more detail than ever on our screens. From technicolor to color grading, color in the movies has had a fascinating 116 year history.
In their video, the footage of when Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz opens that door, and we get a glimpse of the beautiful and colorful world behind the door, really is something. You must definitely no miss that.
You should also see this fascinating Vox video about how Color film was built for white people and what it did to dark skin.
For decades, the color film available to consumers was built for white people. The chemicals coating the film simply weren’t adequate to capture a diversity of darker skin tones. And the photo labs established in the 1940s and 50s even used an image of a white woman, called a Shirley card, to calibrate the colors for printing.
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