Hard Science

Can You Tell This CGI Skin Apart from Actual Skin?

Andrew TieuAugust 12th 2015

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  • Capturing every last wrinkle and deformation of human skin is basically impossible for talented CG animators and sophisticated video capture systems alike. Those infinitely subtle ways the skin moves on a human face allows us to spot the differences between a real-life humans, and their CG counterpart—at least for now.
  • The team of researcher has come up with a new way to capture the tiny details on the surface of various skin patches on an actor’s face at a resolution of 10 microns as they’re being stretched and deformed by a specially-designed rig. At that resolution the exact deformations of even individual skin pores is captured, and using custom software, the captured data can be mapped to the artificial skin of a CG character, making the emotions of the face so realistic you can’t tell human from computer human.
  • Eventually the researchers hope to design a model that allows the system to perfectly simulate exactly how human skin deforms based on a person’s race, age, sex, and emotions, without requiring actors to be subjected to that face deforming contraption.

Check out their video here:

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