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In Praise of Dissent: Adobe CS5 Paves The Way

  • December 2, 2010
  • Shane Hurlbut, ASC
In Praise of Dissent:  Adobe CS5 Paves The Way

Dissent: Voicing opinions that conflict with those that are commonly accepted or officially espoused.

When my Elite Team and I started blazing this trail, we had already become dissenters. We embraced a technology that in Hollywood was a joke, a fad, not viable. This is one of the great paradoxes of the human condition. On one hand the movie industry is built upon the ability of diverse groups of people to conform to common sets of rules and principles. Yet, there is an enormous benefit that awaits when somebody or a group is brave enough to disrupt this coveted social harmony and challenge prevailing convention. That is what all of you are, dissenters. Now that we all know who we are, why fall for conformity? Why not continue the dissent?

If you had a choice of an editing system on a system that was designed for your Canon cameras color space and codec or one that wasn’t, which one would you choose? Personally I would pick the one that was designed for the camera, because to me that means faster, better, more latitude, more options, it just make sense.

Smash Cut to:
Adobe CS5

The first time I saw our “Act of Valor” footage loaded into CS5, I was hooked as a cinematographer. The range, dimension, the filmic quality was so apparent. I went to Jacob Rosenberg who is the head of Bandito Brothers Post and asked him why this looks so different. He said two things: backword engineering and understanding the platform.

This is why CS5 is so special. Adobe went to Canon and asked them to open up their color space to them so that they could do their best to understand it and to expand it. They worked together to find a cocktail to increase depth, dimension in this limitied 8 BIT compressed color space. The next was to the cameras codec. They designed Premiere Pro specifically to deal with the h.264 codec. How many times has this codec failed in Final Cut Pro?

How about an editing system that requires no converting? You can input directly from the CF cards if you would like. This is huge. We all know how long it takes to convert.  Adobe is investing in their software as they see this as the future. Everything is shrinking to your desktop. Save time, edit faster, expanded organic looking 4:2:2 color space, filmic looking blacks, no conversion, REAL TIME editing without the barber shop blue scroll. WOW!!!

When we talked about doing the Hurlbut Visuals HDSLR Bootcamp and giving the students the ability to color correct their edited footage on a 25′ screen by the end of the day, CS5 and Premiere Pro was the only viable option. When I started to use it, I quickly understood the power of this amazing tool. Be a dissenter, go against the grain, go the distance, expand your creativity.


  • Adobe
  • Canon
  • Canon 5D
  • Cinematography
  • creativity
  • HDSLR Cameras
  • inspiration
  • Post / Color
  • Workflow