3D makeup Vanichi Magazine

Connecting the dots: OMOTE uses face tracking technology to project virtual makeup directly onto the face.

The project is shrouded in mystery and intrigue. Although the technology to project-map computer graphics onto surfaces has been around, new strides are being made to make it have razor-sharp accuracy. A team of creative directors and developers lead by CGI expert Nobumichi Asai is debuting Omote, a real-time system that allows digitally rendered makeup designs to be projected and tracked on the face with amazing realism.

The video shows the future of makeup might not rest in a powder brush but in the brush of a keystroke. Real-time face tracking and projection mapping allows the makeup to change instantly and contour to facial expressions. Yet, the possibilities don’t end at dramatic brows and enhanced cheekbones. The technology, entitled OMOTE, can also project fluid scenery. As if she is literally a projector screen, the model in the video goes from a Noh theatrical makeup to robotics in a flash. It’s actually hypnotic.

Utilizing a 3D laser scanner, the system creates a detailed three dimensional model of the face. The graphics can then be adjusted in real-time to the face. The artist can make the imaging appear fixed like natural makeup or they can be fluid as if a river is running across the cheek. The technology of Omote allows the virtual projections to contour to facial features and move with facial expressions such as eyes or lips closing and opening.

As a producer and technical director, Asai is known for his CGI acumen and led Japan’s first big-scale projection mapping project, Seikei 3D. In the past, he has utilized his skills to map on large objects such as fixed buildings and vehicles. Regardless, Asai’s work mixes science and art with unprecedented results.

The team behind this video will have a LIVE projection installation on August 28, 2014 at the Akasaka Studios in Tokyo, Japan. Find out more HERE