It’s all in the eyes..

CGI and visual effects have always taken a massive role in blockbuster movies from destroying worlds to visiting new ones. But only recently have they taken the next step by using CGI to bring people back from the dead.

One of the best examples of this is in the latest Fast and the Furious film, where Paul Walker was brought back to life for the big screen. This was achieved through advanced CGI techniques including facial replacement.

Today, let’s look at the realism that CGI packages and digital artists can achieve when creating celebrity doubles for the big screen, games and magazines.

Firstly, take this image of Robert De Niro. Created using ZBrush, 3ds Max and BodyPaint 3D, digital artist Hossein Diba, an animator and character artist, has captured De Niro’s features and expressions perfectly. Personally, I think the eyes are always a dead giveaway as to whether a photo has been doctored or totally recreated. Eyes change size and shape constantly with every movement of the face, but here Hossein has done a perfect job.

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To view more of Hossein’s work follow this link: http://hosseindiba.wix.com/character-artist

Alexander Beim, a 3D artist from Hamburg, Germany, who has won many awards for his character modelling, created this CGI model of action film star, Bruce Lee. Alexander has done an incredible job of using ZBrush to reconstruct Bruce Lee’s very recognisable face, from the chiselled jaw to the slight scar tissue. However, where the Robert De Niro example looks very much like a photo, I think the render of Bruce Lee is too clean and touched-up, making it look more like a painting.

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To view more of Alexander’s work follow this link: http://lotusart.de/

Now on to Stan Lee, everyone’s favourite comic character creator. Created by Andrew Hakim, from Shanghai, China, Andrew has done a very good job of creating facial expressions and exceptionally well at texturing the model. However, as with De Niro’s eyes in the example above, Andrew has side stepped the hardest part by covering Stan Lee’s eyes with his trademark sunglasses.

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To view more of Andrew’s work follow this link: https://andrewhakimlie.carbonmade.com/

Last but not least, Robert Downey Jr. created by artist Frank Tzeng. I’ve picked this image not because it’s his best, but because it’s his worst. This is a very good example of spending weeks and weeks in a modelling package creating a photorealistic image only to be let down at the last hurdle by the smallest of details. Facial and neck muscles have been modelled very well with incredible texturing and lighting to create a lookalike from the set of Iron Man, but the eyes give it away!

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Regardless it is an impressive model and if you would like to view more of Frank’s work you can visit his website here: https://www.artstation.com/artist/Frank_Tzeng

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