Meet Saya, an Ultra Realistic, Computer Generated Japanese Schoolgirl

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EndlessSporadic:
This article seems to have selectively picked the information on this project and the two creators for a click-baity article. The two creators are freelance 3DCG artists who have created a variety of other pieces of art including men, futuristic military soldiers, orcs/ogres, and other strange creatures. A schoolgirl happens to be one of their more recent creations and it isn't all that uncommon for artists, including Western artists, to draw scenes involving a place of learning.

Do check out the website linked in the article (the first link provided). Some of their works are pretty good.

But all of that other stuff doesn't have the potential creep-factor to get a rise out of people.

OT: Pretty real looking. A casual glance and no headline and I wouldn't have suspected it wasn't a real person.

The co-star has already been announced:


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... I'll see myself out.

McElroy:
Comparing Saya to photoshopped pictures of models, I can't tell much difference.

Sure. If you compare a computer generated picture with another computer generated picture, it's hard to tell which is real. That's because neither of them are. That's the whole point of photoshopping models - to make them look like something that can't actually exist in reality, otherwise they wouldn't need to bother with photoshop. And the amount of editing that is used these days generally means that there's no more real photo left than there is with Saya. The same goes for cosplay - people cover themselves with tons of makeup specifically to hide their actual skin and instead make them look like something that has been drawn or computer generated. It's hardly surprising that a computer generated picture can look like someone going to great lengths to make themselves look like a computer generated picture.

What would be impressive would be managing to get a computer generated picture to look like an actual person with no editing involved. And, as others have mentioned, to do so in motion and not just still pictures. Like others, I'm not saying this isn't a pretty impressive piece of compute art, but it still looks a long way from actually fooling people into thinking it's a real girl, unless the real girl you're comparing with is also going to great lengths to pretend she isn't one.

the December King:
perhaps some better environments and render software would make her feel more real?

I was thinking that too. In the second picture in particular it's incredibly that the girl and the background are entirely separate pictures. That makes things look fake even when it's a real person being photoshopped onto a different background. A neutral background like the third picture is much better since there are less clues that make the difference between foreground and background stand out.

Cowabungaa:

Jake Martinez:
You should write the Diet (国会) and suggest a saturation limit for the representations of schoolgirls in Japanese media. After all, you appear to be some sort of authority on what's acceptable, so why would they argue with that solid reasoning?

o.O

Oh definitely, because my 'reasoning', of which there was none as I only gave a curtly worded opinion, also apparently implies calls for censorship, which it doesn't. Come now, surely you're better than playing rhetorical games.

Well, I thought it was more humorous to be sarcastic than to point out your cultural xenophobia!

Here's a deal: In Japan, all young girls are school girls. In fact, they go to school 6 days a week and most students will have to attend bukatsu (particularly sports clubs) on Saturday and Sunday and wear either their uniforms or sports gear to school. It's almost to the point in some areas that seeing a student outside of a uniform is actually fairly rare. Furthermore, the girl is wearing a standard highschool shirt and tie and not even a seifuku which are the "sailor suits (sera fuku)" that seem to be fetishized (much like catholic school girl uniforms or cheerleader uniforms in the west). This too is fairly normal as most high schools wear standard blazer and dress clothes these days and no longer wear seifuku or the military style gakuran for boys.

So my point here is simple: This is an incredibly normal part of daily life in Japan. The "girl" in the picture looks incredibly normal and her attire is also incredibly normal. The only thing abnormal about this is someone going off on a rant about how the Japanese have a fixation on schoolgirls based off what I can only assume is an ill informed cultural interpretation based on consuming shitty anime. As someone who's both spent his entire life attending private schools as well as having lived in Japan, I don't bat an eye at this. I'd suggest that if for some reason you find this "creepy" or otherwise sexualized, then the problem might be you and your fetishes.

flying_whimsy:
Checked the website, and I can still think of only one word: waifu. She'll make a lot of lonely otaku happy.

That said, I'm wondering when the hentai/jav of her will come out. That'll be hilarious.

I can't check the site at work; it's classified Pornography. I think that answers all my questions.

Hmm, her skin is too perfect, as well as her hair, and her shirt is apparently made of plastic. Also, what's the deal with the thousand-yard stare? Is she a Nagasaki survivor or something? I looked at their site and I think they did much better job with this dude:


Look at the tiny hairs on his ears! Now, that's impressive. You can also see the weave pattern on his shirt.

TheSYLOH:
Anyone here played Song of Saya?
Pro-tip, don't, it is seriously messed up.

Was wondering when somebody would bring that one up. That will be the next model I'm sure.

I'll be the not full of shit guy, totally wouldn't know its CGI without someone telling me. Impressive indeed.

Pictures are one thing, movement is quite another. Very cool though.

Adam Jensen:

Casual Shinji:
There's two kinds of 'realistic' in this regard; Physical realism, and the impression of life. If you told me this was the newest real-doll I'd be inclined to believe you. But anyone trying to even remotely pass this off as indistinguishable from a real life, flesh and blood human really needs to get out more. Bugs Bunny is more lifelike than this girl.

You're only saying that because you know that she isn't real. If you saw this picture somewhere on the internet you'd probably think it was some kind of fashion model. Heavily Photoshopped and with a lot of makeup perhaps, but real nonetheless. There's nothing about her that looks like CGI or plastic.

If it was a thumbnail, maybe. But the size picture in this article... no. Nothing in that face looks like it posses motion of any kind. Again, if you told me this was some wax scuplture, I'd buy that, but there's no way I'd mistake this for a living person.

You can produce a CGI face that is indistinguishable from reality, but this isn't it. Show some imperfections in the skin, make her pose in a way that comes off natural, maybe tilt the head a bit, and ruffle up the hair just enough. She can still look like a fashion model, just one with a pulse.

Samtemdo8:
People criticize that kind of Realistic CG as very Uncanny Valley, but persoanlly I find giving realistic hair strands and realistic skin texture to very cartoony looking characters in Frozen more Uncanny Valley than something like Heavy Rain and Beyond Two Souls.

Well, that's the other extreme, and while I didn't have that problem with Frozen I certain did with Brave, where the textures were just too realistic for the artstyle, making a lot of the characters look like creepy troll dolls come to life.

Whoops, I clicked quote instead of edit.

The reflective/translucent effect of the eyes and skin is, indeed, impressive. I wonder how long it takes to render such an image?

Comparatively, their dissatisfaction with the hair seems like a minor point; hair is a beast in regards to processing time, but otherwise it seems to be a problem that others working in CG have more or less licked.

Imp Emissary:

RatGouf:
But does she have a sister named Diva?

Or more importantly, does she have a Chello playing butler/boyfriend named Haji? >:D

OT: Anyway, pretty well done. Saya looks pretty real. Then again, she is standing completely still. Getting a person to not look weird in motion is the really hard bit I'd imagine.

In the interest of validating you, I will simply acknowledge your reference so that you know at least one other person got it.

I love that anime

... And with that let the clamoring for a new console generation begin.

Casual Shinji:
I've seen in-game character models that look more realistic than this.

Highly doubtful, I'd bet a million dollars that if you take one of these pictures and another one of any other video game characters and show them to random people in the street, the overwhelming majority is going to disagree with you.

Cowabungaa:
Honestly? I have yet to see a more convincing performance than the moment in Half Life 2 where Alex saves your butt from getting its ass kicked from Combine officers, early in the game. Because indeed, as Shinji and someone else said; it's the imperfections and movements that matter. And Alex embodied that, despite the texture resolution being lower, despite the lighting being a lot more crude.

Wait what? there's good animation due to motion capture, but that's hardly the only thing that contributes to "looking like real life" Frankly, while these pics are arguably still in the uncanny valley, nothing in HL2 is even on the same continent.

Casual Shinji:
I'm sure a lot of work went into making this, but it looks too pristine, which is likely due to Japan's obsession with girls being all pure and demure.

sigh, I'd say what Jake Martinez said to Cowabungaa about ill informed cultural interpretation applies to you as well.

I see a bright future for companies that make virtual girlfriends.

So where's the video to see the thing in motion?
Oh, you think "pole vaulting the uncanny valley" has to do with still images looking pretty?
That's cute. In other news, people made a 3d model. Shocking.

Not quite the inane bullshit that the donald trump photoshop article was but still, I see this nonsense crop up on the news feed and still wouldn't know that undertale exists if I trusted this site alone.

The CGI Tintin still has some of the best CGI work I've seen. It isn't trying to be realistic, but it gets close enough to trick you into thinking everyone has a giant nose in real life that I'm happy.

certainly impressive work. no doubt there. but of course on closer inspection you can see that she is indeed fake. but still, well done.

Jake Martinez:

Well, I thought it was more humorous to be sarcastic than to point out your cultural xenophobia!

snip

Because God knows being critical of a culture immediately implies being a xenophobe.

Look, if you want to read all of that in that short sentence I wrote, go right ahead. But I have better things to do than counter straw man arguments all day. But for the record; I'm glad this isn't sexualized, I never even thought it was.

kyp275:

Wait what? there's good animation due to motion capture, but that's hardly the only thing that contributes to "looking like real life" Frankly, while these pics are arguably still in the uncanny valley, nothing in HL2 is even on the same continent.

Well, there's a difference between looking like real life, and looking, well human. And to me, Half Life 2's characters gave me a lot more human feeling than this model does. It leaves me cold, whereas Alex Vance's smile while she helped me up felt a lot more genuine, a lot more warm. I won't deny that this model is a lot more high quality. Just look at those textures and whatnot. But that doesn't seem to cut it for me.

piscian:
I'll be the not full of shit guy, totally wouldn't know its CGI without someone telling me. Impressive indeed.

i probably wouldnt either but there is something off about it i cant put my finger on

pookie101:

piscian:
I'll be the not full of shit guy, totally wouldn't know its CGI without someone telling me. Impressive indeed.

i probably wouldnt either but there is something off about it i cant put my finger on

i would say she looks a bit too shiny and clear, so as too clean; which you would not see on a human being in a photo. you can clearly see it when you have a closer look. but yes, when i saw it first i also thought it was real. until i read the title and started looking at it more clearly. then you start to see the CG which others have pointed out as well.

Major_Tom:
Hmm, her skin is too perfect, as well as her hair, and her shirt is apparently made of plastic. Also, what's the deal with the thousand-yard stare? Is she a Nagasaki survivor or something? I looked at their site and I think they did much better job with this dude:


Look at the tiny hairs on his ears! Now, that's impressive. You can also see the weave pattern on his shirt.

I would definitely agree with you about the thousand-yard stare since I think I would more likely mistake her for one of the wax figures at Madame Tussaud's than a real person. That picture in the spoiler is very impressive though and I think I would definitely more easily mistake him for a real person. Either way, regardless of the subject of the photos I think it's safe to say that these artists are incredibly talented.

Nope, can still tell it's not a real person.

It's exceptionally good, but a portrait profile gives the human eye and mind too many parallels with real people for it to be tricked. Of course, at a distance without the image looking dead at the camera it would be more than ample at convincing me that it's a real person, but then that's trying to deny the brain enough information to properly process it rather than trying to get it every bit of information that's perfectly real.

Does she show boobs? Nobody would care if they weren't at least hoping she would

You know, thinking about it, I find it oddly disturbing that someone would describe girls as having skin that is 'soft and moist'.

They're not apple pies you know. >_>
~Shudder~ Wow, that makes it even worse. XD

I could tell that it was CGI after seeing the picture in which she looks straight on at the camera, but in the others, it is a lot harder to tell, and probably wouldn't have noticed if I wasn't told.

But yes, show me how she moves and speaks, and then we will see if it looks realistic or not.

Also, schoolgirl because of course she is. Never change, Japan. Never change.

Jake Martinez:
Here's a deal: In Japan, all young girls are school girls. In fact, they go to school 6 days a week and most students will have to attend bukatsu (particularly sports clubs) on Saturday and Sunday and wear either their uniforms or sports gear to school. It's almost to the point in some areas that seeing a student outside of a uniform is actually fairly rare. Furthermore, the girl is wearing a standard highschool shirt and tie and not even a seifuku which are the "sailor suits (sera fuku)" that seem to be fetishized (much like catholic school girl uniforms or cheerleader uniforms in the west). This too is fairly normal as most high schools wear standard blazer and dress clothes these days and no longer wear seifuku or the military style gakuran for boys.

So my point here is simple: This is an incredibly normal part of daily life in Japan. The "girl" in the picture looks incredibly normal and her attire is also incredibly normal. The only thing abnormal about this is someone going off on a rant about how the Japanese have a fixation on schoolgirls based off what I can only assume is an ill informed cultural interpretation based on consuming shitty anime. As someone who's both spent his entire life attending private schools as well as having lived in Japan, I don't bat an eye at this. I'd suggest that if for some reason you find this "creepy" or otherwise sexualized, then the problem might be you and your fetishes.

Seconding the rarity of the sailor fuku. Hell, a for a lot of the students around here, their spots uniform is their unofficial uniform. I always figured that since the sailor fuku is such a "symbol" in Japanese culture that getting rid of it would be like getting rid of the red double decker buses in London. Well, fashions change I guess, a school that still using a uniform that had it's heyday in the early parts of the 20th century might be seen as a bit backwoods.

The skin and facial expression is still not quite right - mostly the skin; got to wait for the CGI boffins to come up with a better subsurface scattering algorithm I suppose.

The best of the lot is probably the caucasian lady in the futuristic armor.

Silentpony:
I think I'd be less creeped out by a Battle Sister with a hand-flamer and chainsword to my face, demanding I quote from the 57th Psalm of the Emperor's Righteous Prosecution of the False Gods, Verse 99, Line 115.

I mean HOLY FU-*Chainsword!*

*snickers* Lap dog of the Corpse Emperor...

OT: Well, that's rather strange. I'm getting vibes from that one episode of "Gravity Falls" with that crazy AI in the dating game. *shudders*

Jokes aside though this is rather impressive, not sure why they went with a schoolgirl of all things though.

Holy shit... If nobody told be those were CGI's, I'm not sure if I would have noticed.

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