Real-time face substitution with open source software

Brooklyn-based artist Kyle McDonald has uploaded a stunningly creepy video in which he uses a selection of open source software to merge his face with those of a variety of celebrities.

Although some of the transformations are creepy rather than convincing – in particular the Marilyn Monroe merge, which appears to be melting off McDonald’s face – others, where the facial structure isn’t too dissimilar, are disturbingly life-like.

“I feel like ‘good’ blending looks almost too natural to be surprising,” McDonald explains. “It doesn’t leave any interpolation up to your imagination. It’s possible to push this style further, so it’s less of a blend and more of a replacement, but then you get unnatural colors and shadows.”

Working in partnership with Arturo Castro, McDonald used the FaceTracker library with the ofxFaceTracker add-on and openFrameworks to create the software.

The video’s below, but be warned: it makes for unsettling, if cool, viewing.

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