Face Tracking lets you accurately detect and track human faces. Simple mask tracking lets you quickly apply effects only to a face, such as selective color correction or blurring a person’s face, and more.
However, with Face Tracking, you can track specific parts of the face such as pupils, mouth, and nose, allowing you to isolate and work on these facial features with greater detail. For example, change colors of the eyes or exaggerate mouth movements without frame-by-frame adjustments.
After Effects also lets you measure facial features. Tracking of facial measurements tells you details such as how open the mouth or an eye is. With each data point isolated, you could greatly refine content. Furthermore, you can also export detailed tracking data to Adobe Character Animator for performance-based character animation.
The face tracker works largely automatically, but you can obtain better results by starting the analysis on a frame showing a front, upright view of the face. Adequate lighting on the face can improve the accuracy of face detection.
In the Tracker panel, there are two face-tracking options:
- Face Tracking (Outline Only): Use this option if all you want to track is the outline of the face.
- Face Tracking (Detailed Features): Use this option if you want to detect eye (including eyebrow and pupil), nose, and mouth locations, and optionally, extract measurements of various features. This option is required if you want to use the tracking data in Character Animator.
If you are using the Detailed Features option, a Face Track Points effect is applied to the layer. The effect contains several 2D effect control points with keyframes, each of which is attached to detected facial features (for example, the corners of the eyes and mouth, locations of pupils, the tip of the nose).
In the Tracker Panel, click Extract & Copy Face Measurements. A Face Measurements effect is added to the layer, and keyframes are created based on calculations made from the Face Track Points keyframe data. The Face Measurements keyframe data is copied to the system clipboard for use in Character Animator.
The keyframes for Face Measurements are generated based on the Face Track Points keyframe data, relative to the Rest Pose (refer to Step 8).
The Face Tracker effect creates effect control points for several facial features, which you can view in the Timeline panel.
If you have used the Detailed Features option, you can extract even more information in the form of parametric measurements of facial features, known as Face Measurements. All measurements shown for the face you tracked are relative to the Rest Pose frame.
Indicates the position of the face, offsetting to 0% at Rest Pose frame. The following data points are made available indicating offset values on x, y, and z axes:
- Offset X
- Offset Y
- Offset Z
Indicates three-dimensional orientations of the face. Orientation is measured using the following data points, indicative of x, y, and z axes:
- Orientation X
- Orientation Y
- Orientation Z
Indicates various points of measurement for the left eye, and includes the following data points:
- Left Eyebrow Distance
- Left Eyelid Openness
- Left Eye Gaze X
- Left Eye Gaze Y
Indicates various points of measurement for the right eye, and includes the following data points:
- Right Eyebrow Distance
- Right Eyelid Openness
- Right Eye Gaze X
- Right Eye Gaze Y
Indicates various points of measurement for the mouth, and includes the following data points:
- Mouth Offset X
- Mouth Offset Y
- Mouth Scale Width
- Mouth Scale Height