Sketching up anime characters could be quite an intricate process – especially for amateurs. But thanks to cutting-edge research in artificial intelligence, soon there might be AI-powered assistants that can help you doodle your own anime renders.
Researchers from Fudan University, Carnegie Mellon University, Tongji University and Stony Brook University have developed a generative adversarial network (GAN) that can produce high-quality anime character renders without almost any help from humans.
The scientists built a demonstration website where you can try out how good their pre-tested model is at drawing characters.
The site practically lets users select a series of options for facial and clothing features – like hair style and color, eye color, hat, ribbon, glasses and so on – and then proceeds to generate a unique character based on the traits you’ve indicated.
One thing we noticed when messing around with the application is that it doesn’t always paint the exact features you’ve indicated – or rather, it could do a better job illustrating them.
Glasses, for instance, are one aspect the model struggles to get right, as you could observe in the screenshots below.
In case you’re wondering, the researchers used a new technique called DRAGAN to train the model. The demo site was built on ReactJS. The scientists have summed up the full process in more detail in this technical report [PDF].
Those interested in more specifics about the anime character generators can head to GitHub, where the researchers have since made the source code available to peruse. You can access the page here.
Now go ask this talented AI to help you draw some high-quality anime characters. Just a little heads-up: It seems the site is experiencing an influx of visitors, so you might have to give it some time to load properly.
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