So, Photoshop dropped an update with significant changes. Here, I will explore one of the many new features . . . Neural Filters.
“What be they?” you ask?
Well, Bob, it’s like everything else in this screwed up world. We apply massive computing power to AI algorithms for entertainment purposes. I mean, we should apply them to solving the world’s problems, but that probably makes too much sense, and so we leave that to deeply flawed individuals motivated by religious dogmas, driven by greed, and wading in deep pools of ignorance.
So, what do these filters do? Well, let me show you . . . but first, let me warn you. This has nothing but pictures of me, and none of them flattering. Not that I would have ever won any beauty contests — I do bikinis poorly — but I’ve definitively aged poorly.
By that, I mean that at 57, I looked like 42 . . . but now, at 67, I look like . . . well, here . . .
That is a photo of me I took for an ID card. As I mentioned before, I try extra hard to make ID photos as ugly as I can get them, and, as I’ve gotten older, that’s gotten easier.
Enter Photoshop’s neural filters . . .
Look at all them options! Some are not yet active, but they hint at interesting stuff.
I’m not showing it, but the prior screen has the option to smooth out faces . . . here’s a light touch applied to the above photo . . .
Basically, they remove some wrinkles and blur the skin and fix harsh shadows, and that takes a few years off (appearance-wise).
But, see the other options? Especially, notice “Facial age” . . . what if I put the slider at 30 years younger?
OK, so they tightened the skin a bit and sculpted the face and removed even more wrinkles. But, does that look like me 30 years ago?
You be the judge . . .
I would call that a fail . . .
What about older? Let’s move that slider 30 years into the future . . .
Apparently, I’ll turn into Peter Boyle . . . I suppose it could be worse.
Let’s try the other sliders . . . Let’s try “Happy” with the slider at 30 (for some reason, I fixated on 30).
I think that went not so much “happy” as “creepy”.
Actually, no . . . it’s more like when I’m at someone’s house and they say they made a broccoli casserole for dinner and I don’t want to offend them by making a face, so I try to smile as I swallow the bile that came up.
It’s worth remembering the filter modifies the single photo. It parted the lips and added teeth.
How about “surprised”?
. . . I suppose it’s somewhat there. It looks like they raised the eyebrows a bit (I’d have to overlap the photos to make sure) and, of course, they parted the lips because jaws drop when one is surprised.
The thing is, “angry” looks about the same, except the teeth are closed and the eyebrows are back down . . . the eyes might also have narrowed a bit . . .
Interestingly, they can change where one is looking . . .
OK, that’s pretty good. The only thing I might call them on is that the eyes did not move the same, so it looks like the eyes are not tracking the same amount. Perhaps they will add individual controls for the left and right eyes.
You can also turn the head a bit . . .
OK, that’s also not bad, but still a bit off with the eyes.
You can combine sliders for interesting effects . . . here’s me surprised but happy that I made it to 90 years of age . . .
. . . or, perhaps, I’m happy because I’m wearing some sort of diamond stud earring.
Yes, there is a shadow of the original photo at the top, but this is a beta program, and I could have cleaned it up, but didn’t.
What if I move all the sliders at 30 . . . it makes me 97, angry, happy, surprised, looking left as I turn my head to the left . . .
. . . or, we could go all out and take the sliders to 50 (the maximum) which would make me a 117-year-old surprised, happy, angry, looking left, with my head turned, man . . .
. . . and still wearing my earring, I see, but it has dulled. Perhaps I’ve stopped bathing sometime after my 100th birthday.
What about if I slide everything the opposite way?
. . . yeah, I have no idea who that is.
So, all that is interesting and reminds us that soon, “deep fakes” capabilities will be within the reach of everyone, and photos will lose all their meaning.
As a reminder, all that is from the same single photo. By the way, when you apply the effects, the computations are done in the Cloud. I don’t mean actual clouds; I mean on Cloud Servers. Presumably, leveraging much more computing power than I have on my desktop.
Meanwhile, here’s another photo of me from 30 years ago . . . in the back yard of our first house, having finished blowing all the leaves into a pile, readying them for bagging.
I’m betting it won’t be long before they have sliders to also recreate that look.
. . . I just noticed; those are Wells Lamont gloves I’m wearing. I used to also wear one when playing racquetball. No racquet slippage while wearing one of those. Ah, the good-ole-days.
Edited to add: I forgot to do a gallery, which would make it easier to scroll through the various iterations. Here you go.
That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.
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