Episode 008: Dale Grahn

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On this episode of The Colorist Podcast, I talk with veteran film color timer, Dale Grahn. Long before films were colored using computers, Dale color timed movies, using the only technology available at the time: printer points and printer lights.

He is best known for pioneering the bleach bypass look of Saving Private Ryan, and he’s also worked on other huge films like Gladiator, Minority Report, The Ring, Die Hard, and Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

His work included animated films like The Lion King, Aladdin, Toy Story, and Beauty and the Beast, which required a different workflow that many timers avoided altogether.

He’s collaborated with the biggest names in the industry like Steven Spielberg and Joel Silver. Currently, he is a fellow of the Colorist Society International and has directed his energy towards recognition of colorists worldwide.

On the podcast, we talk about:

  • When he got his start as a color timer
  • How timing differs from color grading or telecine
  • Gaining the opportunity to time is first major film, Predator
  • The bleach bypass look and how it happened almost by mistake
  • Director's and Cinematographer's role in his work
  • Why animated films required a different approach
  • Creating looks with the limited tools available in color timing
  • Why printer points are still used today
  • Working without seeing the immediate results of color changes
  • How the Koji Color film emulation LUTs were developed
  • ACES and getting everything to live in one color space
  • His role in Colorist Society International, and why it’s important for colorists today
  • His advice for colorists coming up today

Dale Grahn, IMDB Page

Koji Color

Dale Grahn Color for iPad

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This episode is sponsored by mixinglight.com. Use the coupon code josh10 for 15% off your first quarterly term or josh40 for 15% your first annual term.

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