Real-time face tracking + Projection Mapping = Face Hacking

Japanese producer and projection mapping specialist Nobumichi Asai colaborated with make-up artist Hiroto Kuwahara along with French digital image engineer Paul Lacroix to create this awesome video art installation entitled Omote. The title refers to the mask used in the traditional Japanese musical drama of Noh. Using real-time face tracking and projection mapping the team created a virtual mask on the face of a live mode..

The woman wears no makeup. Instead her face is covered in tiny sensors for 3D laser scanning of her features and the projection of a perfectly accurate three-dimensional facial replica making her appear as though her eyes are open when they’re really closed and that she’s wearing makeup:

Or undergoing surreal transformations straight out of anime or science fiction:

Welcome to the marvelous world of face hacking:

Watch Omote to get the full effect of this stunning project.

Then click here for even more of Nobumichi Asai’s awesome face hacking projects. We can’t wait to see how this fascinating technology is used in future.

[via Business Insider, RocketNews24 and WebUrbanist]


We are thrilled to announce our involvement in a history-making event. Yesterday at the whitehouse Maker Faire, we unveiled two 3-D printed portraits of President Obama. This is the first time a U.S. President has been scanned in 3-D and the prints and the data from the scan will become part of the collection the National Portrait Gallery. We had the honor of scanning him with our structured light scanners and with some of the most advanced 3-D technology including University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies’ Light-stage that was used to capture his face at high resolution. Our partners at Autodesk combined the two sets of scanned data into one model and 3D Systems created the 3D print using SLS nylon. We hope to share more details about the process soon, but for now you can read the press release 


Behind the Scenes: The Chemical Brothers ‘Wide Open’

A look at the process from The Mill shows how they put together the latest video for the Chemical Brothers directed by Dom&Nic, using 3D scanning and rendering to produce that ‘how the hell did they do that convincingly’ transparent one shot effect:

… Teaming up with Efficacy4D, we captured a LIDAR scan of the set and then used the scan to ensure that we had a very accurate track. Matching the dancer would’ve been a whole lot harder if we couldn’t trust the camera track.  We used the scan to project HDRI images for accurate lighting, which was also incredibly useful for making clean plates.

… By far the most labour intensive part of the project was the 3D tracking (matchmoving). Our team of animators had to position each limb so that it exactly matched Sonoya’s pose on all 6,798 frames. This is one of the most complicated things that we do in VFX and is a highly intricate and skilled job. How did we overcome this? Patience, lots of patience.

Not only was this the longest shot we have ever tracked, we incorporated a range of new procedural modelling techniques, human body scanning, lidar scanning, motion capture, an extremely complex rig, animated lighting, cloth simulation and a huge amount of cleanup work. These combined added up to an extremely complex blend of techniques.

More Here


More images of bones that were 3D printed from a CT scanned cheetah (photos of that process here).

Anthropologist and conservationist JP Brown modeled and rendered this skeletal for an upcoming exhibition about biomechanics, opening in March. This will be incorporated with an exterior model, the end result revealing a partial skeleton. Museums utilizing new technology in this way means we can share our research outside of our walls without having to worry about obtaining permits for protected species remains, or risk damaging permanent collections items. 

And, you know, it’s a printed cheetah.

Exactly 47 years after Neil Armstrong took the first steps on the moon, you can hold the Apollo 11 Command Module in the palm of your hand. Well, a 1:40 scale version of it. 

Today our 3-D team released their scan of the spacecraft that carried Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins to the moon. It allows you to sit where they sat, seeing much more than you could when visiting the object at our National Air and Space Museum. Plus you can print it out to have a command module of your very own.

Take a tour in 3-D or spin all the way around (just like you’re in space!) in this 360-degree photo.

Smithsonian Creates the First-ever 3D Presidential Portrait

The portraits of President Barack Obama were created based on data collected by a Smithsonian-led team of 3-D digital imaging specialists and include a digital and 3-D printed bust and life mask. They used 50 custom LEDs and 14 cameras to compile a detailed topography of the president’s head and upper torso.

See more about the process in this video:

[read more] [Official White House Photo by Pete Souza]


Archaeological Data visualized with HTC Vive Dev Kit in UE4

Proof of concept demo from David Finsterwalder is a virtual reality immersive dataset of an archaeological dig featuring photorealistic 3D scanning and augmented data points (and created in a week!):

Walking around in a 3D scanned cave and a visualization of the Database of the paleolithic excavation.

The Database consists of ~17000 single measurements from several excavation campaigns over 10 years and is visualized with a different 3D Symbol per Artifact category. Showing all 17000 Symbol Meshes at once is made possible through instancing (and thus reducing draw calls to ~300). Through this method the whole scenes with all Artifacts shown runs in rock solid 90fps on a GTX 970 and i7 4770K.

More Here

Today we announced big news about the Apollo 11 Command Module at our National Air and Space Museum. 

When our 3D team scanned the object, they found a set of markings that hadn’t been seen in the nearly 50 years since the historic moon landing—a discovery of astronaut graffiti. 

It includes some notes, figures and a hand-drawn calendar likely created by the crew during flight. 

An interactive 3D model, which you’ll be able to print, will be available at 3d.si.edu in June. To tide you over until then, you can see a preview in the video above. 

Read the latest chapter on this living artifact here. 


Glitches and Mistakes of 3D Scanning | ScanLAB Projects | Via

ScanLAB Projects provides 3D scanning services for architects, engineers, developers, museums, scientists and designers using various technologies including LIDAR and bespoke software to convert the data generated into accurate point-cloud models for generating 2D drawings and 3D models.

But the final images produced for clients do not show all of the data captured by the machines, which also record a layer of digital “noise” – visual data sometimes attributed to particles of dust, weather conditions and changes in light.


Sophie Kahn

The fragmented surfaces of artist Sophie Kahn’s sculpted bodies are created using the precise 3d print and scanning technology to capture the dynamic motion of our bodies, as they serve as a reflection of our history, identity and the space and world that we occupy. 

  1. Reclining Figure of a Woman (five years of sleep), 3d print from 3d laser scan, life size, 2013
  2. Torso of a Woman (shards), 3d print from 3d laser scan, life-size, 2013
  3. Woman, Head Thrown Back, 3d print from 3d laser scan, life-size, 2013
  4. Laura: RGB, 2011, full color 3d print, life size, 1/5
  5. Torso VIII, 2012, archival chromogenic print, 24" x 40", 1/5
  6. L: Clay (Fragment), 2012, glazed stoneware (cast from 3d print), life-size, 1/1
  7. Laura: RGB, 2011, full color 3d print, life size, 1/5, images posted with permission of the artist. 

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See more Sophie Kahn on iheartmyart.
See more sculpture on iheartmyart.

In Another Giant Leap, Apollo 11 Command Module Is 3D Digitized for Humankind
Nearly 50 years after Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins journeyed to the moon, their spaceship finds a new digital life
By Menachem Wecker

3D digitization: the final frontier.

Our staff is working to 3D scan the Apollo 11 Command Module at the National Air and Space Museum. The object is the digitization team’s biggest challenge yet, since its shiny surfaces and cabin filled with intricate dials and knobs are troublesome for laser scanners. 

Next summer you’ll be able to tour an interactive 3D model online and see details inside the artifact that even curators hadn’t seen. You’ll also be able to print your own 3D model.

Get the full story on the project from @smithsonianmag.


Impossible White Portraits

Motivated by the idea of interpret classic portraits in a contemporary way, artist Craig Ward has scanned 3D portraits of New York Polyphony musicians and then created this series of white impossible busts. As if they were liquid, dissolving, these bustes pay tribute to a classic music style, those of 15th Century chamber music.