All you need to know about NASCAR colour grading with Philip Hambi

Community July 24, 2023

What was the most exciting part of working on this spot?

NASCAR is iconic and has such a massive following in the US. Combine that with the fact that this film is a celebration of the last 75 years of the sport and it’s hard not to get excited! I’ve always been a fan of Mark’s work and being able to collaborate with him on this amazing project was very cool.


What were the biggest technical challenges while working on this?

The biggest technical challenge on this job was successfully executing the six different looks that defined the eras presented throughout the film. Fortunately, I had time on my side with this one, as it was posting for a few weeks at The Mill NYC office. This allowed me the rare opportunity to tinker with the grade to make sure that it was immaculate.


What was the creative process?

The creative process was as expected driven by Mark (Director) and Macgregor (Cinematographer) and their vision for the spot. The briefing from both Mark and Macgregor was comprehensive and insightful as it allowed me to immediately focus on what they were after and achieve it with relative ease.

Its key to remember that usually, with car commercials, there’s a requirement to deploy a load of shapes to really help the car POP. But NASCAR 75 is a celebration of the history of the sport and we’re not actually trying to sell the car. This meant that the priority and main focus of our work was on the narrative of the film and not the car and its design characteristic.


Did you learn anything new while working on this spot, especially while collaborating across The Mill sites?

This biggest take away is how awesome The Mill NYC office is. The work achieved by the NY team in the time that they had is genuinely incredible. So many of the shots had massive CG Stadium and crowd take overs and they’re all seamlessly integrated with the live action plate. This wasn’t the first job that I’d worked on with the New York office and I am constantly impressed with their super collaborative attitude.


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