Cinematic Commercial Video Real-time Color Grading (Video)

I’ve been wanting to create Youtube tutorials but I don’t think I can do it consistently so I’m just going to create these types of videos where I grade clips in real-time.

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This is an example of how to color give a commercial video a cinematic vibe without compromising the product’s natural look.

Log (footage source:

The log image looks really nice and was filmed with perfect white balance.


I manually adjusted the contrast without using CST or conversion LUT. I didn’t know the camera used and I also want to preserve more information in this look.

Final Look


I wanted to make it poppy to have the commercial vibe but still have some of the qualities of a film that evokes emotion and cause the audience to be drawn to the video.

People are bombarded with a lot of commercial videos every day. With skippable ads on Youtube, in-feed ads on Facebook, etc.

Creating something that stands out among all these ads will really get you a better result for your ads.

I adjusted the blue so that it won’t look so awkward with the reds. I made the red darker to create more depth in the image. I created a mask towards the center to add more depth. I also sharpen the area along the subject’s hand to direct the eyes of the viewer.


In the video, I was using a color grading panel so it’s a bit hard to digest what I was doing but basically what I did was first get my contrast in the right ballpark, then balance the colors. I did some cleanups but since the camera used is an Arri Alexa and it was perfectly lit, I didn’t have that much problem with cleaning up unwanted gunks, chromatic aberrations, and other distracting things in a video.

I didn’t use film emulation because that will mess up the colors. If it was a film, it’s okay but not for commercials. Clients would want to preserve the real color of their product. It’s a good practice to have the client’s product’s photo in hand so that you’ll be guided along the way.


Creating a cinematic look for commercials can be very tricky but the first rule is to make sure that the product looks nice while adding your look until the final grade. The techniques I used are learnable and with constant practice, you can do them with ease.