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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, i have been asked to do a tutorial on how to create singing pumpkins and singing busts. I am not an expert at this but I have played around with it a bit so I will pass on what I do know and maybe folks here will be able to have a starting point to improve their displays.

This tutorial will be in two (2) parts. The first part I will explain a little about using FaceGen to create a singing bust. The second part I will explain how to use CrazyTalk to import what we have created from FaceGen and make it sing.

The creation of a singing pumpkin is primarily created with CrazyTalk and not the FaceGen program but the idea in CrazyTalk for the busts and the pumpkins are the same so I hope you will be able to understand the basics.

IMPORTANT: I am not the creator of the singing pumpkins and I have no intention of stealing the creators idea so please forgive me if I do not use his pumpkins to demonstrate.

You can find CrazyTalk here > http://www.reallusion.com/crazytalk/crazytalk_trial.asp
You can find the FREE version of FaceGen here > http://www.facegen.com/downloads.htm

Ok, first things first. Go find an old photo of someone to use in this demonstration. Next open FaceGen and then we are going to import that image so we can work on it.

At the top left of the screen you will see a number of tabs. We want to select the "PhotoFit" tab. You should see something similar to this.
07_pumpkin_demo.jpg

We only need a forward profile to make this work. Now click "NEXT" at the bottom of the screen.

Select "LOAD" to the top right in the FRONTAL IMAGE (REQUIRED) section and select your face. I have selected an actual bust of Abraham Lincoln for this demo.
08_pumpkin_demo.jpg

Now select "NEXT" at the bottom right.

This next screen you will need to define the feature locations of the general face. You can fine tune this later. You will need to move the green cross hairs to their respectable locations on your image as shown in the example to the right.
09_pumpkin_demo.jpg

Take particular care as to which cross hair you move to what position. If you put for example one of the cross hairs that is designated for an eye on the nose, the rendered image will not come out correctly.

When you click "NEXT" your image will enlarge and allow you to move the cross hairs again to fine tune the locations.

Click "NEXT" again and you will be asked if you want to preserve facial hairs. I am leaving this checked in my demo here but it is up to you.

Click "START NOW"

It may take a few seconds to render but when it is finished, you will see something like this in the program.
10_pumpkin_demo.jpg

You now need to place your mouse over the head and click - hold - and drag your mouse to rotate the head. You can have some fun with this a little. However you need to center the face as if you are looking directly at it.
11_pumpkin_demo.jpg

I have adjusted the DETAILED TEXTURE MODULATION and the TEXTURE GAMMA CORRECTION so that old Abe will blend in a little better with the 3D bust.
12_pumpkin_demo.jpg

Now go to your FILE menu and select SAVE IMAGE and save it.

-1.jpg
ORIGINAL

abe test.jpg
FACEGEN RESULT

abe test edited.jpg
This final image was loaded into an image editing package and I changed the image to black and white. I also adjusted the brightness down and increased the contrast. I want the features to stand out on the actual projection. This will allow your viewers to see more of the facial features and animations that you are going to create in the next tutorial.

So this was pretty easy I hope. You can play around with the FaceGen application and adjust a number of different things but what I have showed you is pretty much all you need to do to create a facial image for a bust.

Ok, now to go and work on the next part of this tutorial.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Just thought of something else to add.

If you are planning to add anything to your bust such as a hat, hair and so on, you will need to edit the final image to remove the parts that would be obscured by the additional prop item. If not your projection will be shown on that item of hair or hat or whatever you decide to add to the physical bust.

Also by bringing the final image into an image editor, you can make corrections as needed. Looking at the final of Lincoln here, It appears that the lips need some adjustment. Easy enough fix but I will leave it for now.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Their was a question about the MESH's and how to change them to suit the characters. I mentioned that using the default MESH's is recommended and that I have not had any issues with them as of yet. I figured a visual comparison would be better so here are some images created with FaceGen that shows that each characters face shape is automatically defined. As you can see, each character is a bit different. IMO having a different face shape makes your busts stand out a little better than having three or four busts look all the same. Of course you will need to create the additional shapes on the physical bust to match the projected image.
BorisKarloff03.jpg boris3d.jpg
Boris Karloff

BelaLugosi01.jpg bela3d.jpg
Bela Lugosi

jay-meyer-mansion-2007.jpg JAY3D.jpg
Jay Meyer

LonChaneySr01.jpg lon3d.jpg
Lon Chaney Sr.

PeterLorre01.jpg peter3d.jpg
Peter Lorre

Thurl+Ravenscroft.jpg thurl3d.jpg
Thurl Ravenscroft

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO USE ANY OF THESE FOR YOUR OWN PROJECTS. Only one condition.....Show it off to the rest of us.

For example if you use the standard styrofoam busts offered at a hobby shop, you can apply or remove additional shaping to it to complete the desired effect. I do believe I have seen a tutorial here someplace that shows how to add substance/dimension to one of these heads. I will have to search for it again and place the link here.

With a little effort, one could create the same busts that have been made famous by Disney in the Haunted Mansion using these techniques I have explained above.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Glad I could enlighten you on the process Terra.

SavageEye, you asked. Thats all it takes sometimes.

I share what I know in hopes to help someone else out. I am always willing to learn something new even if I think I know already. Sometimes you may learn a new trick that you have not figured out yet. An old odg CAN learn new tricks. Heck I just learned to sit yesterday and I am on my final week of house training. LOL :)
 

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fmcaninch

You've seemed to really grasp on to this software better then I could.. I could never seem to create a decent straight on image of Thurl with the Facegen software, but I see you've had no problem. I was hoping my version of this project would have seem fruition by now but it's been a few years of cutting back projects for various reasons. LOL I seem to have far more ideas than I do money, time & space! :OP Thank you for creating this thread for people wanting to try it themselves! Hopefully one day soon I'll be able to revive my Singing Busts. :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I apologize for the lapse in time on this tutorial. I am guilty of neglecting this post. I see I have missed a few comments and I have failed to provide a follow-up to this tutorial. I will work on creating a finish for y'all in between my other projects but I will bump this up. Sorry I let everyone down on this.
 
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