Aug. 11, 2014

Nowadays 3D printing can be used to make personalized figurines with the facial features of real people. By scanning the individual's face with a depth camera or other sensor, we can create a 3D model of the facial features which can then be applied to a figure that is produced on a 3D printer. But current systems all have one limitation: no method is able to capture personalized hair-styles for physical reproduction. Often hairstyle is approximated very coarsely or replaced with a pre-existing template.

But now, researchers at Disney Research Zurich and the University of Zaragoza have found a solution for this problem. They have developed an approach that can incorporate an individual's hairstyle as well.

"Almost as much as the face, a person's hairstyle is a defining characteristic of an individual," said Dr. Derek Bradley, associate research scientist at Disney Research Zurich. "The resulting figurine loses a degree of realism when the individual's hairstyle isn't adequately captured."

Inspired by artistic sculptures, such as Michelangelo's David, the researchers attempt to reproduce the essence of a hairstyle in the solid form of a helmet. "The key to our approach is a novel multi-view stylization algorithm, which extends feature-preserving color filtering from 2D images to irregular manifolds in 3D, and introduces abstract geometric details that are coherent with the color stylization." notes the researchers.

Beginning with several color images captured of the subject's head, the system first computes a coarse geometry for the surface of the hair. Color information from the images is then added, matching the colors to the rough geometry to the extent possible. In the next step, color stylization, the level of detail is reduced enough to enable the representation to be miniaturized and reproduced, while preserving the hairstyle's defining features. Finally, geometric details are added in a way that is consistent with the color stylization.

The researchers demonstrated the system by capturing the varying hairstyles of several people, including two people who each were scanned with four different hairstyles. In each reproduction, the hairstyles are identifiable and recognizably the same as when the subject's image was captured. The method even enabled facial hair and fur to be reproduced.

In addition to Bradley, the research team included Dr. Thabo Beeler of Disney Research Zurich and Jose I. Echevarria, a Ph.D. student who interned at the Disney lab, and Dr. Diego Gutierrez, both of the University of Zaragoza, Spain. The researchers will present their new method at ACM SIGGRAPH 2014, the International Conference on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques in Vancouver, Aug. 10-14.


Posted in 3D Printing Technology

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matthew baldwin wrote at 8/21/2014 9:59:03 PM:

i like turtle

Jason wrote at 8/12/2014 7:32:45 AM:

Thats awesome! I hope they make it publically available, either free or affordable!!

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