Avatar Preparation for Variants of Laughing

Posted on Thu 21 Nov 2013
Laughing can involve a complex series of muscles and body actions. The contribution of facial movements and posture differs depending on the variations of the laughter. To incorporate laughing into avatars, we prepare 3D virtual characters with significant combinations of expressions and are able to activate them independently.

For the ILHAIRE project, we use virtual characters that have been designed to display facial emotions and models of expressive gestures so we can combine them according to valence and activation dimensions. To prepare the virtual character, the 3D artist separates the face and the body, since the animation systems differ.

  • The face is initially modeled with a neutral position. Then we create different morphing possibilities of the face to simulate muscles and facial movements. The main parts of the face that we “morph” are the lips, chin, cheeks, eyes, eyebrows, nose and forehead. Very often small, incremental modifications create an important difference in perception.
  • For the rest of the body, we insert a 3D model “skeleton” to the 3D mesh that will allow us to manipulate the avatar as if it were a puppet. We prepare different series of simple or complex different body part movements that the avatar will be able to execute with agility.

With Living Actor™ Avatar maker, we prepare several combinations of face and posture expressions (“states”) so the avatar is able to perform actions related to the variants of laughter we desire. Then, Living Actor™ synchronizes the combination sets with the audio files, so when laughing, the virtual character moves the body in synchrony with the different facial expressions according to the sound of laughing. All of the body language, facial expressions, and essence of laughter are created within Living Actor™ Avatar maker.

Living Actor™ Avatar Maker Graph of States