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This article was published on July 28, 2020

This AI turns your home videos into cute cartoons

Cartoonizer joins a growing field of photo to animation convertors


This AI turns your home videos into cute cartoons Image by: The White House
Thomas Macaulay
Story by

Thomas Macaulay

Writer at Neural by TNW Writer at Neural by TNW

If you’ve ever wondered what you’d look like in animated form, you can now find out. Developers Tejas Mahajan and Niraj Pandkar have created an AI tool that can turn your photos and videos into cartoons.

Cartoonizer is based on a research paper by University of Tokyo researchers Xinrui Wang and Jinze Yu. The tool leverages their open-source implementation to create a publicly-available demo of the method, using GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) servers for the video inference and CPUs (central processing units) for the images.

It’s far from the first attempt to turn people into cartoons, but its videos are pretty impressive. Check out this cartoonized scene from Marvel’s Avengers:

Mahajan and Pandkar think the tool could create quick prototypes for animes, cartoons, and games. They also envision it generating minimal art, adding short cut-scenes to games, and assisting graphic designers and animators in their work.

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[Read: This AI spit outs endless new My Little Pony characters]

Becoming a cartoon

Being a narcissist intrepid reporter, I deigned to test the tool on my own countenance. When I fed it a headshot, Cartoonizer quickly spat back a rather haunted portrait — perfect for the brooding new look I plan to cultivate.

Unlike so many AIs, Cartoonizer also seems to work well on people of color:

Finally, to test Cartoonizer’s video converter, I fed the app a clip of my favorite athlete: LeBron James.

Mahajan and Pandkar plan to open source the code and write an article on the architecture within the next few days. In the meantime, you can try the tool out yourself at the Cartoonizer website.

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