Facial modeling and animation play a crucial role in today’s society in the fields of simulation, communication, and digital entertainment. Realism and efficiency are the two factors holding us back from optimizing our models of the human face. Facial expressions play a key role in human society and are strongly linked to emotion. In this paper, we explore the different methods of modeling and animating human facial expressions, highlighting the problems and solutions that have been developed. We also investigate the biological and psychological properties of facial expressions to gain a better understanding of how to induce more realism into our models. Some current research and applications in the field are explored. We apply the theory by attempting to improve on Keith Waters’ 1987 facial model to improve realism, detailing the existing model and its drawbacks as well as our improvements.


Byrnes, Denise


Computer Science


Geometry and Topology | Graphics and Human Computer Interfaces


Graphics, facial modeling, facial animation

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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