SpeedGrade wasn't designed to work that way. IRIDAS designed it to run at the very end of the production pipeline; so the footage is edited, handed-off to Sg, then rendered for final output directly through Sg's interface. With CS6, Adobe didn't change that functionality - that's why there's a "Send to SpeedGrade" command in Pr but no return path in Sg. With trivial projects you can manually re-link each source file, but when you have a complex series of media assets it's just plain nasty.
With Premiere Pro CC you will be able to grade as an inbuilt effect.
That is disappointing. Is there any possible workflow option I could use between Premiere and color correcting software(whether is sg, apple color, davinci, etc) when working with r3d footage?
Is there a reason why you need to grade the footage pre-edit in a way that Premiere's basic color-correcting tools (such as the 3-way CC) won't handle?
You're asking for a 'workflow option' but what you're doing now is essentially correct, just not in that order.
Import to Prem -> cut - > EDL -> load in Sg -> grade -> render.
There's a lot of confusion about how Sg works with Premiere Pro, the truth is it doesn't - not yet. In the digital cinema industry unless there's something so hideously-off thatyou can't see what you're cutting, the edit happens before anyone even begins to think about grading. Only when the cuts are nailed is the EDL handed off to the colorist (another person in another office, possibly another planet, with a completely different set of hardware and training). It's much more efficient as they only have to grade the footage chosen for output - time and money isn't wasted processing frames that nobody's going to see - and shot matching is easy because they know where the cuts are. Sg was designed for that industry, so it's very much an end-of-pipe product. Unfortunately until Adobe bought IRIDAS, Premiere Pro was also at the end of that pipe.
I'll admit Adobe haven't helped the situation by promoting Sg as a Shiny New Toy For Everyone. It's not (yet) - the fact it prefers everyone to have a Tangent desk rather gives away the intended audience. Sg is very good at what it does and has a couple of unique features (such as Macbeth detection) but it's by no means the only way to get a 'look' onto your footage.
Until CC arrives in a couple of weeks, the possible workflows starting in Prem are:
- Edit your raw (or offline) files, then pass to Sg via EDL (or DPX for people without timecoded media), grade and export from there (the way IRIDAS planned it to work).
- Bring some sample clips into Sg, construct a grade and export the LUT files, then (try to) apply those in Prem or AE as Fuzzy suggests. It's not without problems but it's an option if you have an existing .look and don't have the time to deconstruct it.
- Use Prem's inbuilt CC effects or a third-party plugin (e.g. those from Magic Bullet).