Color Correction Filters

Color correction filters can be used in a number of ways. You can change a mood by making an object sepia colored, or make your object stand out by oversaturating it. In addition, these filters can be used to fix a problem with contrast, color, gamma, or brightness.

Brightness

Boosts or lowers the uniform brightness of an image by the specified amount.

Although this may seem to be the first filter to use if you want to correct for improper exposure in an image, the drawback of this filter is that it boosts or lowers everything in an image at once. This means that raising the brightness in an image raises it everywhere, including in the shadows. The result is that a brightened image may look washed out.

On the other hand, this filter can come in very handy as a way to modify the edges and effects of shapes, masks, particle systems, and generators.

A better filter for exposure correction is the Gamma filter. For more information, see Gamma.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Brightness filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Brightness: Sets the multiplying brightness value applied to the object.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following control: Brightness.

Channel Mixer

Allows cross-mixing of red, green, blue, and alpha channels into one another. The Channel Mixer filter’s main parameters are divided into four sections, each of which manipulates an individual channel. In each section, you can adjust the value of the relevant color channel added to or subtracted from the red, green, blue, and alpha channels. This is a more flexible version of the Channel Swap filter below.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Red - Red: Sets the amount of input red added to the output red. The default value is 1.0, which leaves the red channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of red increases by the amount of input red multiplied by the value of Red - Red.
  • Red - Green: Sets the amount of input green added to the output red. The default value is 0, which leaves the red channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of red increases by the amount of input green multiplied by the value of Red - Green.
  • Red - Blue: Sets the amount of input blue added to the output red. The default value is 0, which leaves the red channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of red increases by the amount of input blue multiplied by the value of Red - Blue.
  • Red - Alpha: Sets the amount of input alpha added to the red channel. The default value is 0, which leaves the red channel unmodified. As this value increases, the value of red increases by the amount of input alpha multiplied by the value of Red - Alpha.
  • Green - Red: Sets the amount of input red added to the output green. The default value is 0, which leaves the green channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of green increases by the amount of input red multiplied by the value of Green - Red.
  • Green - Green: Sets the amount of input green added to the output green. The default value is 1.0, which leaves the green channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of green increases by the amount of input green multiplied by the value of Green - Green.
  • Green - Blue: Sets the amount of input blue added to the output green. The default value is 0, which leaves the green channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of green increases by the amount of input blue multiplied by the value of Green - Blue.
  • Green - Alpha: Sets the amount of input alpha added to the green channel. The default value is 0, which leaves the green channel unmodified. As this value increases, the value of green increases by the amount of input alpha multiplied by the value of Green - Alpha.
  • Blue - Red: Sets the amount of input red added to the output blue. The default value is 0, which leaves the blue channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of blue increases by the amount of input red multiplied by the value of Blue - Red.
  • Blue - Green: Sets the amount of input green added to the output blue. The default value is 0, which leaves the blue channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of blue increases by the amount of input green multiplied by the value of Blue - Green.
  • Blue - Blue: Sets the amount of input blue added to the output blue. The default value is 1.0, which leaves the blue channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of blue increases by the amount of input blue multiplied by the value of Blue - Blue.
  • Blue - Alpha: Sets the amount of input alpha added to the blue channel. The default value is 0, which leaves the blue channel unmodified. As this value increases, the value of blue increases by the amount of input alpha multiplied by the value of Blue - Alpha.
  • Alpha - Red: Sets the amount of input red added to the output alpha. The default value is 0, which leaves the alpha channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of pixels with non-transparent alpha increases by the amount of input red multiplied by the value of Alpha - Red.
  • Alpha - Green: Sets the amount of input green added to the output alpha. The default value is 0, which leaves the alpha channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of pixels with nontransparent alpha increases by the amount of input green multiplied by the value of Alpha - Green.
  • Alpha - Blue: Sets the amount of input blue added to the output alpha. The default value is 0, which leaves the alpha channel unmodified. As this value increases, the output value of pixels with nontransparent alpha increases by the amount of input blue multiplied by the value of Alpha - Blue.
  • Alpha - Alpha: Sets the amount of input alpha added to the output alpha channel. The default value is 1.0, which leaves the alpha channel unmodified. As this value increases, more alpha is added to the pixels in the alpha channel. Values above 1 have no effect, unless the alpha has been eroded by negative values in the other alpha parameters.
  • Monochrome: Sets the filter to monochrome mode. In monochrome mode, all three color channels are affected by the Red controls.
  • Allow Mono > 1: Allows monochromatic color channels to be set to values greater than 1. By default, this checkbox is selected. Color values are normally between 0 and 1, but can go over 1 or below 0 if your project’s bit depth is set to 16 bits or 32 bits per channel. If this checkbox is deselected, each of the Red color output controls are linked. Moving any one of them causes the others to automatically adjust to keep the total value at 1.0. The filter must be in monochrome mode for this parameter to be active.
  • Include Alpha: Sets whether or not to include the alpha channel in the mono calculation. The filter must be in monochrome mode for this parameter to be active.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Red - Red, Red - Green, Red - Blue, Red - Alpha, Green - Red, Green - Green, Green - Blue, Green - Alpha, Blue - Red, Blue - Green, Blue - Blue, Blue - Alpha, Alpha - Red, Alpha - Green, Alpha - Blue, Alpha - Alpha, Monochrome, Allow Mono > 1, and Include Alpha.

Channel Swap

Substitutes the color value of a color channel with that of either a selected channel, or its inverse. If you select Blue from Red, the value of blue in the object will match the value of red across the entire object. The Channel Swap filter can be used in a variety of ways, including simply inverting the alpha channel of an object.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Channel Swap filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Red from, Green from, Blue from, and Alpha from.

Color Balance

Color balance generally refers to the overall tint of an image reflecting the color temperature of the primary source of light. For example, sunlight is generally bluer than interior tungsten light, which tends to be more orange. Although most film and video is shot to make sure that the whites in an image are a true neutral white, different film stocks and video color balance settings result in slight tints in the image.

Use this filter to adjust the color balance of an object by boosting or lowering the individual amount of reds, greens, and blues in the shadows, midtones, and highlights of an image. You can use this filter to correct for improper color balance, or to change the color balance in an image for a stylized effect.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Color Balance filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Shadow Red: Picks the color gain applied to the shadow range of the red color channel. Values range from –1.0 (no color) to 0 (unaltered color) to 1.0 (maximum color).
  • Shadow Green: Picks the color gain applied to the shadow range of the green color channel.
  • Shadow Blue: Picks the color gain applied to the shadow range of the blue color channel.
  • Midtone Red: Picks the color gain applied to the midtone range of the red color channel.
  • Midtone Green: Picks the color gain applied to the midtone range of the green color channel.
  • Midtone Blue: Picks the color gain applied to the midtone range of the blue color channel.
  • Highlight Red: Picks the color gain applied to the highlights of the red color channel.
  • Highlight Green: Picks the color gain applied to the highlights of the green color channel.
  • Highlight Blue: Picks the color gain applied to the highlights of the blue color channel.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Shadow Red, Shadow Green, Shadow Blue, Midtone Red, Midtone Green, Midtone Blue, Highlight Red, Highlight Green, and Highlight Blue.

Color Reduce

Reduces the full range of color in an image down to two, three, or four colors that you select. Depending on the number of substitute colors you choose in the Reduce To parameter, this filter breaks down the full range of colors in the image into a color range for each Match Color parameter that’s available. It then substitutes the selected Replace With color for each interpreted range of color.

If two colors are selected, all color information in the object is reduced to the selected two colors; if three, they are reduced to three; and so on.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Color Reduce filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Smoothness: Sets the smoothness of the transitions between the reduced areas. Values range from 0 (hard edges) to 1 (smooth blending).
  • Match Color 1: Picks the color of the first selection color for reduction. The color controls can be expanded with the disclosure triangle to reveal Red, Green, and Blue sliders for more precise color selection.
  • Replace With: Picks the color that is substituted for the selection determined by Color 1.
  • Match Color 2: Picks the color of the second selection color for reduction.
  • Replace With: Picks the color that is substituted for the selection determined by Color 2.
  • Match Color 3: Picks the color of the third selection color for reduction. This parameter is used only if Reduce To is set to 3 Colors or 4 Colors.
  • Replace With: Picks the color that is substituted for the selection determined by Color 3. This parameter is used only if Reduce To is set to 3 Colors or 4 Colors.
  • Match Color 4: Picks the color of the fourth selection color for reduction. This parameter is used only if Reduce To is set to 4 Colors.
  • Replace With: Picks the color that is substituted for the selection determined by Color 4. This parameter is used only if Reduce To is set to 4 Colors.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Smoothness, Reduce To, Match Color 1, Replace With, Match Color 2, Replace With, Match Color 3, Replace With, Match Color 4, and Replace With.

Colorize

Substitutes the blacks and whites in an image with different colors you select. All other colors in the image are remapped to a duochrome range that falls between these two colors.

Interesting colorized “negative” effects can be achieved by remapping the blacks in an image to a lighter color than the whites.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Colorize filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Remap Black To: Sets the color that is mapped to black. The color controls can be expanded with the disclosure triangle to include Red, Green, Blue, and Opacity sliders to more precisely select the color.
  • Remap White To: Sets the color that is mapped to white. The color controls can be expanded with the disclosure triangle to include Red, Green, Blue, and Opacity sliders to more precisely select the color.
  • Intensity: Sets the strength of the colorization. Values range from 0 (no colorization) to 1.00.
  • Mix: Sets the percentage at which the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Remap Black To, Remap White To, and Intensity.

Contrast

Adjusts the contrast of an object.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Contrast filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Contrast: Sets the amount of contrast to be applied to the object.
  • Pivot: Sets the point around which the contrast is adjusted. The point of contrast adjustment is the level which is displayed if Contrast is set to 0.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Contrast and Pivot.

Desaturate

Reduces the amount of color in an image by a specified amount. This filter can be used to mute the color in an image, making brighter colors less saturated. It can also be used to completely eliminate the color from an image, turning a color image to a grayscale one.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Desaturate filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Desaturation: Sets the amount of desaturation. Values range from 0 (no change) to 1.00 (full desaturation).
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Desaturation and Luminance.

Equalize

Remaps the black and white points in an image, resulting in individual adjustments to the contrast in the dark and light parts of an image. The Equalize filter can be used to adjust the overall contrast range of an image, crushing the whites and blacks, or it can be used to create selective washed out or darkened effects.

This filter causes rasterization in 3D groups.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Equalize filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Black Point: Sets the relative color value used for black.
  • White Point: Sets the relative color value used for white.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Black Point and White Point.

Gamma

The Gamma filter adjusts the relative distribution of brightness within the midtones of an image, while leaving the white and black points alone. The perceived result is to brighten and darken the areas of medium brightness within an image, while leaving the highlights and shadows untouched. This avoids a washed-out result.

This is one of the most useful filters for correcting poor exposure in images, and should almost always be used first before trying the Brightness filter.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Gamma filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Gamma: Sets the gamma correction.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following control: Gamma.

Gradient Colorize

Uses each pixel’s color value to determine the application of a color value from a gradient.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Gradient Colorize filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Gradient: Selects a gradient preset to be applied to the object, or is used to edit a custom gradient.

    For more information on using the Gradient editor, see Using the Gradient Editor.

  • Offset: Sets an amount, in degrees, that the color wheel is offset to determine color application. Values start at 0 degrees.
  • Repeats: Sets the number of times the gradient repeats over the course of its range.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Gradient, Offset, Repeats, Repeat Method, and Map Channel.

HSV Adjust

An alternate method of performing color correction based on the HSV color model. HSV is often used in computer interfaces.

This filter provides controls to adjust the Hue, Saturation, and Value levels in an image. The Hue control is an angular representation of the color values in an image. By rotating the Hue angle, you uniformly remap the colors throughout an image, similar to the effect of turning the hue or phase knob of a broadcast monitor.

The saturation controls the intensity of the color in an image, with a high saturation resulting in vivid color, and a low saturation resulting in a grayscale image with no color at all. The Value slider, on the other hand, adjusts the overall brightness or darkness of all colors in an image, including the blacks and whites in a desaturated image.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the HSV Adjust filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Hue: Sets the angle of adjustment used to set the zero point of the color wheel.
  • Saturation: Sets the color saturation of the object, ranging from –1.0 (no color information) to 0.0 (unadjusted color) to 3.0.
  • Value: Sets the intensity adjustment applied to the object.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Hue, Saturation, and Value.

Invert

Inverts all color and brightness in an image. This filter can be used to turn a scanned negative image into a properly displayed positive.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Invert filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

None.

Levels

This filter provides controls to remap the white and black points of an image, along with a Gamma control to adjust the midtones, all at once. A histogram provides an analysis of the image that you can use to help you judge the adjustments you want to make.

A powerful option within this filter is the ability to make independent adjustments to the red, green, blue, and alpha channels of an object.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

None.

Negative

Simulates the effect of turning an image into a film negative. This filter causes rasterization in 3D groups.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Negative filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

None.

Reduce Banding

Reduces the amount of banding in the image.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Reduce Banding filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Noisiness: Sets the amount of noise to introduce into the object.
  • Movement: Sets whether or not to animate the noise in the image.
  • Mix: Sets the amount of the original image to mix with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following control: Noisiness.

Saturate

Increases or decreases the amount of color in an image by a specified amount. This filter can be used to mute the color in an image, making brighter colors less saturated. It can also be used to completely eliminate the color from an image, turning a color image to a grayscale one.

This filter causes rasterization in 3D groups.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Saturate filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Saturation: Sets the color saturation of the object, ranging from –1.0 (no color information) to 0.0 (unadjusted color) to 3.0.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following control: Saturation.

Sepia

Tints an object with a sepia tone. The black and white points are remapped to dark and light sepia colors. The amount of tinting can be adjusted, to achieve either a subtle mix of the original and tinted colors, or a completely tinted image.

This filter is good for that “old-time western” look.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Sepia filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Amount: Sets the amount of sepia tone applied to the object.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following control: Amount.

Threshold

Reduces all colors in an image to a duotone, with the additional ability to limit the range of midtones that are preserved in the image. The result is an extremely high-contrast image that defaults to black and white—but you can reduce the image to any two colors.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Threshold filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Threshold: Sets the threshold of selection for color substitution. The threshold determines what will be considered light and what will be considered dark areas of the object.
  • Smoothness: Sets the smoothness of transition between the two colors substituted.
  • Dark Color: Sets the color used to represent the dark interpreted areas of the object. The color controls can be expanded with the disclosure triangle to include Red, Green, and Blue sliders, for more precise color selection.
  • Light Color: Sets the color used to represent the light interpreted areas of the object.
  • Correct For Alpha: This setting renders semi-transparent pixels correctly. Enable this setting if the edges of the filtered image show artifacts.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Threshold, Smoothness, Dark Color, and Light Color.

Tint

Tints an entire image with a single color. Shadows and highlights are less affected, but all of the midrange colors in the image are gradually replaced with the tint color as the Intensity parameter is increased.

Figure. Canvas showing effect of the Tint filter.
Parameters in the Inspector
  • Color: Picks the color that is used to tint the object. The color controls can be expanded with the disclosure triangle to display Red, Green, Blue, and Opacity sliders for more precise color selection.
  • Intensity: Sets the amount of tint applied to the object.
  • Mix: Sets what percentage of the original image is blended with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Color and Intensity.

YIQ Adjust

Allows color adjustment in YIQ color space. The YIQ color space definition was formerly used to describe an NTSC broadcast signal.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Y: Sets the intensity of the Y color channel.
  • I: Sets the phase of the I color channel.
  • Q: Sets the phase of the Q color channel.
  • Mix: Sets the amount of the original image to mix with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Y, I, and Q.

YUV Adjust

Allows color adjustment in YUV (Y′CBCR) color space. The YUV color space definition is used to describe NTSC and PAL broadcast signals.

Parameters in the Inspector
  • Y: Sets the intensity of the Y color channel.
  • U: Sets the phase of the U color channel.
  • V: Sets the phase of the V color channel.
  • Mix: Sets the amount of the original image to mix with the color-corrected image.
HUD Controls

The HUD contains the following controls: Y, U, and V.