Recognizing Action Units for Facial Expression Analysis

IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence
Ying-Li TianJeffrey F Cohn

Abstract

Most automatic expression analysis systems attempt to recognize a small set of prototypic expressions, such as happiness, anger, surprise, and fear. Such prototypic expressions, however, occur rather infrequently. Human emotions and intentions are more often communicated by changes in one or a few discrete facial features. In this paper, we develop an Automatic Face Analysis (AFA) system to analyze facial expressions based on both permanent facial features (brows, eyes, mouth) and transient facial features (deepening of facial furrows) in a nearly frontal-view face image sequence. The AFA system recognizes fine-grained changes in facial expression into action units (AUs) of the Facial Action Coding System (FACS), instead of a few prototypic expressions. Multistate face and facial component models are proposed for tracking and modeling the various facial features, including lips, eyes, brows, cheeks, and furrows. During tracking, detailed parametric descriptions of the facial features are extracted. With these parameters as the inputs, a group of action units (neutral expression, six upper face AUs and 10 lower face AUs) are recognized whether they occur alone or in combinations. The system has achieved average recognition rates...Continue Reading

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