Crossing the uncanny valley WIP

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  01 January 2012
today i did some quick tests enhancing the scan data by extracting the fine skin details from the textures.

  02 February 2012
moving on

  02 February 2012
Wow this technique looks amazing.
When i get some time i will most certainly try it out myself.

I'm gonna keep watching this thread.
  02 February 2012
i made an ear 'scan' today.

the main thing i was interested into were the calibrated cameras.
the ear itself will be modeled by hand, the scanned mesh serves only as a guide and rough reference

  02 February 2012
This thread is indeed very inspiring. Definitely makes me want to try that out. I heard about an other software like photofly which is called ScannerKiller. I have never tried one of those tools but i wonder if they produce similar quality. Did you try multiple tools?
I'm curious about the next updates
HDR Sets
  02 February 2012
well, the greatest benefit of photofly is thats its free, and gives you the results back super quickly thanks to cloud computing, the downside is that you have to send your data to external servers (i smell some goverment data mining conspiracy, jk )

as an alternative i tried software called Agisoft photoscan, but couldnt get results as satisfying, its also pretty time and hardware heavy.

i was also checking scannerkiller, but it reguires also a projector input i think and some serious calibration, in case of photofly, you can just grab your camera - go anywhere and scan anything.

and im definetly looking forward to this :
  02 February 2012

Originally Posted by kybel: today i did some quick tests enhancing the scan data by extracting the fine skin details from the textures.

How did you do this?
great work by the way.
  02 February 2012
hi simon, and thanks for the compliment.

its done via technique i learned from Ryan Kingslien :

i took this raw scan into zbrush, smoothed it with the smooth subdiv brush and applied the texture on it

then i converted the texture into an intensity mask.

from this mask you can then extract the fine skin details with the inflate and smooth sliders in the deformation panel
its important to do this on the highest possible subdivision level, and also not overdo this step, otherwise the result looks sketchy and unnatural

hope this was somewhat helpful. cheers

Last edited by kybel : 02 February 2012 at 09:11 AM.
  02 February 2012
really interesting tool!
I have read something about this software some month ago but I never tryed it.
Have you used zbrush for retopologize the mesh?
Do you think that this method is quicker than the usual one (reference image and poly modelling)?
Thanks and keep going this interesting project!
  02 February 2012
ciao marco.

i used topogun for retopology, and yes, i think its definitely quicker and cleaner. cause since you know the model is spot on, you can focus only on the clean proper topology

but this is imho also a great approach when it comes to poly modeling.
cause you can still delete the scanned mesh (or use it just as a guide) and work with the cameras that are already setup and aligned up, all you need to do is just plug in some image planes. and you can have as many cameras as you can possibly need, with perspective and everything. i personally cant imagine a better reference when it comes to facial modeling

much much more accurate than the classical front, side and 45 views, and definitely much more accurate than plugging image planes into ortho views

since this stage ive been working on this project the classical way - poly modeling on the mouth nose and mainly eyes. and having so many views to check the model is really a treat.
  02 February 2012
turns out I'm gonna need more cameras. much MOAR! (34 cameras to be precise)

it may seem like an overkill, but since ear is such a complex shape (and i want it to be very accurate to the reference), every single one of the cameras are very helpful, and the more angles you have the better, cause each one reveals a new subtle curvature, thickness, form, etc.

so far I'm just doing a 'dirtyisch' model, my main concern is to get the shape right, and not worrying about the topology. once I'm happy with it , ill give it some love and care in zbrush and then retopologize it in topogun

Last edited by kybel : 02 February 2012 at 01:55 PM.
  02 February 2012
Originally Posted by kybel: i was also checking scannerkiller, but it reguires also a projector input i think and some serious calibration, in case of photofly, you can just grab your camera - go anywhere and scan anything.

ScannerKiller has been used extensively on hollywood blockbusters. XYZ RGB uses this as their own internal scanning software. It does require calibration, but it's not very difficult. A projector isn't needed actually, except when you're scanning things without any obvious texture, like a mannequin torso. Otherwise it will pick up the key points from the image just like the other solutions.

Also, give this a try if you can. Using the normal map you extracted via crazy bump, you can use a mograph displace modifier in cinema 4d to displace the geometry via the normals in the image. This should give much nicer details than what zBrush is giving you, as I believe zBrush is just using the grayscale intensity to displace the mesh.

Last edited by NextDesign : 02 February 2012 at 02:55 PM.
  02 February 2012
thanks for the displacement tip. im definitely gonna try that out
  02 February 2012
No problem. Just make sure that you turn down the shape recognition in crazy bump, as that might affect the result; too much will distort the mesh. You already have the low-frequency detail from the scan, what you want in the normal map is the high-frequency information from the images.

Also, if you haven't done so already, it would probably be best to project the images onto your UVed mesh now. The automatic textures generated from Photofly aren't the best quality, or resolution. Using a higher resolution texture, you'll be able to get much more accurate, and dense, normals.

Last edited by NextDesign : 02 February 2012 at 03:53 PM.
  02 February 2012
im planing to shoot the textures separately, it has to be lit uniformly, also planing to light and compose a world space normal maps...just to challenge myself
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