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Nino Film Blog | March 3, 2024

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Color graded version of FEBRUARY

Color graded version of FEBRUARY
Nino Leitner

Added 13 January 2011:

FEBRUARY has been watched an incredible 210,000 times over the past 10 months. THIS IS UNBELIEVABLE!
Thank you all for that much interest in this first short film that was ever shot with the Canon T2i/550D before it came into the market.

The 210,000 are cumulative views from 4 different clips of the film:
– FEBRUARY ungraded on YouTube and Vimeo
– FEBRUARY graded on YouTube and Vimeo

I’ve finally freed up some time for color grading my Canon EOS Rebel T2i / 550D short FEBRUARY.

The original caused quite a stir: thousands and thousands of views (on Vimeo & YouTube combined), featured on Engadget, great feedback from thousands (!) of people. So I decided it was time to show you what you can make with this “flat” footage straight off the camera.

Have fun!

You can watch a 1080p version of FEBRUARY – COLOR GRADED VERSION on YouTube.

Graded using Apple Color, part of the Final Cut Studio 3 suite of applications.

Find more details about this film and see the ungraded version of it in my extensive review of the Canon Rebel T2i / 550D.

“Living Waters” by Philip Glass from the The Truman Show (MP3 Download)

EVERYTHING in this film was shot USING ONLY THIS equipment, because I keep getting asked what I shot with:





  1. This video is stunning…such rich color! You have convinced me to invest in the 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM lens…but still going to get a 7D.

    • Glad you like it Victoria … Yes, this lens is well worth it. Actually, I used the new version of this lens, the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM II, but I’m not sure its enhancements are worth the extra $700. According to the review at least there’s not so much difference that would justify the additional investment. But then again, I haven’t used the “old” version of this lens at all!

      • Thanks for the information, Nino! I wasn’t aware of the new II release, and better to make an informed decision with this kind of an investment. – Vicky

  2. I still attest that this is the best thing ever.

  3. Hey Nino, Love what your doing and really appreciate you sharing the wealth in terms of knowledge. What did you use to grade the film? FCP? Any particular plugins? Keep it up, Nick.

    • Hey Nick, thanks for your comment!

      I used Apple Color and some standard plugins that come with Final Cut Pro. I updated the blog with this information.

  4. Mark

    Very stunning video! Full of mood, mystery and intrigue. And excellent choice of music to go with it. Very, very well done. Truly the work of a professional!

    Thanks for posting and for showing what a consumer-level camera is capable of!


  5. Raul

    What lens and setting did you use to get the people in the background blurred? Awesome job by the way!

  6. virgilxavier

    I love your subtle color grading. It seems you mainly crushed the blacks and boosted saturation. Anything else?

    • Well, I used some white diffusion from time to time and also some gradients. The colour temperature was sometimes adjusted.

  7. How many framessecond? 60?
    Which was the idea of color correction at the base of you work? Much more contrast and brightness?

    Well done guy! Compliments from italy…now i’ll buy this camera.
    Ah just a question: how it (the camera) works moving it?

  8. deniz

    lieber nino,
    welche objektive empfiehlst du falls man sich die 70-200
    nicht leisten kann ?
    lg aus wien

    • goldbauch

      darf ich?

      das 70-200 4.0 L IS, gebraucht. neu liegt’s ja bei 950, gebraucht in bestzustand bei 750. ca. Sind einige im Umlauf, da viele auf die 2.8er version umsteigen, sobald sie sich’s leisten können.

      ansonsten wird’s in dem brennweitenbereich relativ schwierig. insbesondere bildstabilisiert gibt’s keine wirklichen möglichkeiten.

      preislich wird’s dann erst wieder bei den (unstabilisierten) canon 4.0 l, dem sigma 70-200 2.8, oder der tamron version (auch 70-200 2.8) interessant.

      mein persönlicher rat wäre, zu warten und auf eine gebrauchte version des canon in den einschlägigen foren ( oder zu sparen.

      mit anderen scherben wirst du nicht wirklich glücklich, glaube ich. wenn’s gar nicht anders geht:

      • goldbauch

        zusatz: qualitativ ist das schon eine welt. einziger vorteil: es ist schwarz, und damit wesentlich unauffälliger. =)

  9. Hey Nino!

    This is by far the best video I have seen made with the T2i, it alone makes me want to immediately have it…

    The color grading is wonderful too!

    Just a side note, the music is actually from the documentary ‘Anima Mundi’ by Godfrey Reggio, only it was used later in ‘The Truman Show’… 🙂

    • Hi David,

      Thanks for your comment. Ok, I didn’t know that … it’s really interesting because Reggio was also the director of Koyaanisqatsi, one of my all-time favorite films – music of course also by Philip Glass.


      • Kenswift

        Hi Nino,
        I love your website and just purchased a T2i and waiting for it to come in. My stepdad has a slew of lenses and is going to lend me whatever I need. He has the EF70-200 you used here but without the Image Stabilizer. How is that going to effect my video? Also, What type of shoulder rig do you recommend? Thanks


        • You will not really be able to use it handheld as the wobble will really bad without the stabilizer at such a focal length, of course it will be worst at the long end! With a tripod you should be relatively fine though.

        • I recommend the Zacuto rigs like the Crossfire and other smaller rigs, see the Amazon link on the right. They are not cheap but worth it and you’ll have them forever as they are super-expandable and come with lifetime warranty.

  10. Michael

    Great video, great recommendations!

    I use that gear and would like to get your input why I have those big problem creating smooth pans:

    – Tripod: Manfrotto 055XPROB
    – Head: Manfrotto MAN804RC2
    – Camera: 550d
    – Lens: 70-200 L 2,8 US (without the IS)

    Is it the missing IS?
    Is it the photo-head?

    Thanks a lot in advance. I really appreciate it!

  11. Hey Master!

    Please help me with a specific question. I know how to (you) crush blacks and increase contrast but please tell me how to let skin tone immaculate without taking the mood of my film!

    Please tell me as detailed (in settings) as you can!

    Thank you very much!

  12. Srivatsa

    Hello Neno. I loved ‘February’. I am inspired on purchasing a canon 550D strictly for the purpose of making short films. I am new to lens. I have a few queries and hope to get enlightened here. Would I have to buy additional lens than the default that comes with the camera for making short films? If I have to shoot a scene in a spiral stair case with the cam following the subject (where the distance between the cam and the subject is small) and at the same time I want a shallow d.o.field, which lens would I need?

  13. wow, amazing stuff… i’m all new to this and just got the 550d recently looking to get into video. Just an off topic question, if one purchases a track from Amazon, you are able to use it in your videos without any copywrite issues?

    Thanks for all the tips!

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