Video-based Facial Capture Gets Real

Written by Mark Ramshaw

ICT / Digital Human League / RedShark NewsICT and Digital Human League Facial Capture

The quest to develop a system for animating and rendering completely realistic human faces takes another step forward with the development of a new performance capture technique from the Digital Human League.

Under the guidance of Paul Debevec, the computer graphics researcher whose groundbreaking papers on image-based modelling and lighting helped create the visual effects in The Matrix, The University of Southern California's ICT Graphics Laboratory has arguably become the world's most respected pioneer in the field of photorealistic animation and rendering.

Its work on high dynamic range imaging has changed the way 3D artists capture and utilise real-world lighting information, while its Light Stage technology is now a staple tool for many visual effects studios when building digital doubles – even recently making an appearance at The White House for the creation of a 3D bust of Barack Obama.

Now, following the news that Debevec and a number of other VFX luminaries are working together under the Digital Human League banner to push forward realism for digital humans, comes a method for driving high resolution facial skins directly using video performance capture.

The process involves first creating a high resolution model of an actor's face, using one or more high-quality geometry and reflectance scans. This is then used to generate animation based on one or more video streams of a performance recorded in arbitrary environments. What's remarkable is just how accurately the system is able to map and recreate the subtleties of non-markered facial movement, without any geometry drift and without the need for any specialised rendering tools or tricks. The technique is due to be shown at this year's SIGGRAPH event, but in the meantime you can read more about the technique at the ICT webpage here, and see the technique in action and explained in the video below.

Tags: Technology

Comments

Related Articles

31 July, 2020

This is how Netflix is adapting Anime to modern technology

The streaming service brings 4K and HDR to the classic Japanese artform in the latest example of its prototyping production techniques.

Netflix's...

Read Story

30 July, 2020

Gigabyte Aero 17 XA review: A competition beating powerhouse [sponsored]

The Gigabyte Aero 17 XA has some pretty nifty specs on paper. How does it stack up in the real world, and more importantly against the competition?

...

Read Story

30 July, 2020

For all film makers: How to avoid losing your stuff and where to put it

Replay: The technological revolution has created great opportunities for new film-makers everywhere, but has in its wake created a new challenge:...

Read Story