Crowdsourced facial expression mapping using a 3D avatar

Crystal Butler, Lakshmi Subramanian, Stephanie Michalowicz

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Facial expression mapping is the process of attributing signal values to a particular set of muscle activations in the face. This paper proposes the development of a broad lexicon of quantifiable, reproducible facial expressions with known signal values using an expressive 3D model and crowdsourced labeling data. Traditionally, coding muscle movements in the face is a time-consuming manual process performed by specialists. Identifying the communicative content of an expression generally requires generating large sets of posed photographs, with identifying labels chosen from a circumscribed list. Consequently, the widely accepted collection of configurations with known meanings is limited to six basic expressions of emotion. Our approach defines mappings from parameterized facial expressions displayed by a 3D avatar to their semantic representations. By collecting large, free-response label sets from naïve raters and using natural language processing techniques, we converge on a semantic centroid, or single label quickly and with low overhead.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCHI EA 2016
Subtitle of host publication#chi4good - Extended Abstracts, 34th Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9781450340823
StatePublished - May 7 2016
Event34th Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI EA 2016 - San Jose, United States
Duration: May 7 2016May 12 2016

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings


Other34th Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI EA 2016
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Jose


  • 3D facial modeling
  • Avatars
  • Crowdsourcing
  • Expression recognition
  • Facial expressions
  • Facs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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