A poll on colorists adding scanned grain to their grades

I can still remember the first time I encountered this. I was doing a spot for Jordan Scott and the work was so grainy that I had to denoise every plate, work on it, then re-apply the grain. Before Neat Video (or at least my awareness of it) this was a big deal.

I found out later the colorist had added the grain. They had some “scanned film grain” and I don’t want to go into a whole rant here on that. I get it. It’s dumb, but I get it.

I’ve run into this a bunch, and on one hand it annoys the shit out of me, because I have to degrain EVERYTHING, but on the other I’m jealous I have neither the clout nor the belief in self to have done this first.

What about you, are you mad about added grain, or jealous you’re not the one who gets to add it?

Mad or Jealous
  • Mad
  • Jealous

0 voters


Not only you need to degrain/regrain in Comp… most of the times I’ve to scale/zoom/PanScan/animate that grades in timeline to match offlines. So that grain is scaled as well and doesn’t look good anymore.
I always try to convince colorists to exclude grain from their renders and apply it on top of my timeline with their guidelines. But it’s a fight every time…

And why can I not vote for both? :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

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No choosing both. To be human is to know the imperfection of a singular choice but to choose nonetheless.


There was a project not too long ago where the colorist (from a smaller color house) passed along their wish that grain be added, but did not apply it themselves, which I very much appreciated.

In general though I found during my time under the Method/Co3 umbrella that colorists consider themselves to be at the top of the post food chain and even if grain, etc. is outside their specific purview, the amount of monkeying around with color that flame artists do justifies them crowding our turf a little.


Mad and jealous.
Happened just this week.

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Let me tell you about the time where a colorist added scanned grain to hundreds of thousands of frames and then asked me to paint out the dust hits on the resulting footage.


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Never had a colorist add grain before vfx but added after is a welcome thing. Totally jealous of the power colorists have. Recently on an 8 minute commercial the colorist couldn’t possibly work the last day of changes because that would be outside his work hours and would eat into personal time. I mean good god! If only we were treated with such dignity. But I got to do final grade changes in flame because of it. Loved it!

It seems like this has become back in fashion these past few years. I recall a time when grain was out not so long ago. When dealing with MPC and Mark (only colorists I’ve gotten spots from there) they’re more than happy to supply grained/non-grained and the grain plate but that can be a lot of data to push around.

I don’t care too much if everything is being graded post VFX but in this day in age where we’re having to master a whole slew of aspect ratios with various push-ins, etc…yeah…it’d be nice to do it as a single layer on the timeline. Now if only a BFX to apply grain could scale and deal with a new aspect ratio with out me having to do anything.

Fun story. Earlier this year I got plates back from color where they applied the grain, but didn’t account for the actual Open Gate frame so it was only applied to the 16:9 area which, weirdly enough, also left a semi-opaque letterbox. They tried to tell us we had the ungrained plates and the grain plates and to fix it ourselves. I declined.