[All images copyright Edmond Laccon]
Since the transition to predominantly digital workflows in the early 2000s, it’s hard to imagine a creative role that has become more muddied by misinformation and confused dogmas than that of the colourist.
As traditional photochemical workflows fused with broadcast and emerging technologies, confusion over commonly-understood terminologies and the purpose behind even the most common grading tools has become widespread.
Combined with the internet’s growth in disseminating information and an industry-wide lack of vocational/educational opportunities for young people aiming to work in post has lead to misconceptions regarding imaging, grading and their supporting technologies becoming increasingly endemic.
The UP.GRADE programme in its 9-month form, was created to mitigate this phenomenon.
Today as part of an effort to continue UP.GRADE’s positive legacy in education, I have had the honour to lecture for:
My years with the UP.GRADE programmes and its subsequent short courses, has brought the opportunity to learn from an incredible pool of well regarded practitioners and lecturers from the fields of post-production, colour science, camera development and of course colour grading.
Established by the German Film and Television Academy (DFFB) in 2015, the UP.GRADE programme and its curriculum was defined by its head of programme Dirk Meier as a 9-month, full-time post-graduate education in the art and science of colour grading.
With funding and support from MEDIA, ARRI, Medienboard Brandenburg and later from Technicolor, the programme provided talented emerging colourists with theoretical and practical training, provided by some of the most respected professionals in the fields of colour science and grading.
Second to none: the UP.GRADE trailer gives an overview of the scope of the original 9-month programme.
Hugely successful, UP.GRADE ran for four editions – training 40 highly knowledgable colourists – however a change in its funding has brought about the end of it as a longterm programme.
In 2019 I organised a new programme of UP.GRADE courses that covered key aspects of the production process. These were given by the original UP.GRADE lecturers as well as new ones including Prof. Andrew Stockman, Paul Dore, Andrea Chlebak, Vanessa Taylor, Franz Lustig, Dr. Pasquale Iannone and Pete Ludé.