Photographer reveals editing tricks he claims CBS used to make Bannon look bad

In an exclusive CBS News “60 Minutes” program that aired Sunday night with host Charlie Rose and Breitbart News executive Steve Bannon, the former White House strategist looked tired, with redness in his eyes. This was the result of using color adjustments to make Bannon appear poorly on television, alleges professional photographer Peter Duke, who published a YouTube video to demonstrate the specific steps taken to manipulate the color and increase the saturation levels in the video.

Duke wrote on his YouTube page: “It seems like 60 minutes would like you to listen less and look more at Steve Bannon. By subtly tweaking the color of the video, they make him look like a bleary-eyed drunk. I show you how they did it.”

He noted that the shots shown of Charlie Rose looked normal, to include the color of the drapes behind the host. But the shots of Bannon were enhanced to make his eyes and lips appear redder, and the curtains behind him were a brighter orange color.

The coloring in the shots of Rose was more normal, cooler and subtle.

Duke demonstrated what would happen if the same color adjustments were made to the shots of Rose, and showed the more natural result when color saturation levels were reduced in the shots of Bannon.

Below is a transcript of Duke’s comments in his video:

DUKE: I wanted to talk a little bit today about color correction and grading, and how it can be used to make people look better or worse on television. This is a still frame of Steve Bannon from the 60 Minutes interview that’s going to run tonight. And the first things that I noticed was that there were red circles around his eyes and his lips looked cherry red. And I also noticed the curtains in the background looked really orange.

Now I’ve met Steve Bannon and I know what he looks like. He’s Irish and he does kinda have paper skin. But, he doesn’t have pronounced red circles around his eyes. That’s not who he is in real life. So I started comparing the two shots of Charlie Rose and Steve Bannon to see what kind of differences I could find, and it was very interesting. The first thing that you need to take a look at is the coloring saturation. Those drapes in the Breitbart Embassy are actually the same color. Now the light lighting them might be slightly closer or farther away, which accounts for the brightness, but they are the same color. And you can see from these two shots that they are defiantly not the same color.

If you take a look at Charlie Rose’s shirt, it’s about 13 unit of blue from neutral, which means that they’ve graded it into a cooler shot. That does a couple of things. It makes his make-up look less clownish and it also knocks down the contrast a little bit. So, I’m going to do the same thing to Steve. I’m going to make it a little bit bluer and I’m also going to lighten up the shadows a little bit. And Voila, the blood shot eyes are gone.

Now I’m going to do to Charlie what they did to Steve. I’m going to kick up the situation, the red, the orange, and i’m going to increase the contrast. So here are the two shots before and after, before and after. And here’s what the pictures would look like if they were graded similarly. Steve doesn’t have red circles under his eyes, Charlie’s make-up is subtle, can’t really tell he’s got it on, unless you’re looking. And Steve doesn’t look like the monster they want you to think that he is.  

This is a photo of the way Bannon would have appeared without the color manipulation, according to Duke’s demonstration:

See the full demonstration below:

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