This App Lets You Try On A New Face

By Joelle Renstrom | 7 years ago

Walter White FaceSubstitute
Walter White FaceSubstitute
What are you up to on this fine Sunday? Not much? Perfect! We’ve got just the thing for you. It’s a little weird, but you’re down for that, right? FaceSubstitute is a new program that allows you to try on someone else’s face. Want to make fun of the Bieber after the week he’s had? Put his face on, grab some eggs (and probably some booze too) and have a good chuckle at his expense. Or maybe you think you’ve got a regal profile and you want to try on the queen’s visage. Or maybe you were always more of a Clooney kind of guy.

me as chuck norris
Me as Chuck Norris
With FaceSubstitute, becoming someone else is easy. All you have to do is open a web browser and give the program permission to use your webcam. It’ll map out your face and basic features, and then you pick a person from a list that includes Walter White, Kim Kardashian, Clooney, Bieber, Chuck Norris, Obama, the Queen, Audrey Hepburn, and the Mona Lisa among others, and press start. It’s pretty weird, but definitely awesome. And if you want to make yourself look all creepy and distorted, you can choose “abstract” and then try to forget it’s possible for you or anyone else to look like that.

me as terminator
Me as Terminator
The app was created by Audun Mathias Øygard, a developer and artist based in Oslo. Apparently he found a productive way to pass the cold winter days and nights in Norway. His Twitter stream is full of kudos for the app, as well as some suggestions, such as adding wigs. I have to second that one. Øygard got the idea from a video posted to vimeo by Kyle McDonald and Arturo Castro, who used the FaceTracker library to develop a downloadable app that demonstrates similar but even better face-substituting/blending capabilities.

One of the most impressive aspects of the app is that you don’t have to download anything, it’s all in the browser. The browser does have to be WebGL supported (Chrome apparently works best for this, but I got it to work fine in Firefox—you can check your browser’s compatibility here). The demo uses a javascript library called clmtrackr which has been built to track facial features. It works well enough for anyone who wants a laugh and a few weird pictures. At one point, when I was trying on Nicholas Cage’s face, his face separated from mine and started floating around, which might actually be scarier than me looking like him. It was a little bit like I was living Face Off.

floating nick cage
floating Nick Cage
Ready to give it a go? Here’s the link. Happy Sunday.