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Freaky 3-D Scanning Turns Human Skin Into Art
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The most startling thing about the music video for British band Duologue’s song Memex isn’t the ghostly way the slow-panning camera turns human skin into a landscape. It’s not how the model, actor Beryl Nesbitt, manages not to blink. And it’s not how at 3:30 in, with just a change in the lighting, the tone of the video abruptly gets dark and sinister. Rather, the most startling thing about the Memex video is that none of those hyper-realistic shots are photos. It’s a virtual 3-D scan of a human body, in this case, British actor Beryl Nesbitt. The knowledge that it’s virtual reality makes watching the video a little like seeing a Chuck Close for the first time: Your eyes initially registered a black-and-white photograph of monolithic scale, and it takes a few beats before you can believe that it’s a painting. London-based creative studio Marshmallow Laser Feast—great name!—made the video for the band (and their friends) Duologue as an deep dive experiment into filmmaking for virtual reality. Hollywood has been using various kinds of 3-D scanning technology for years—films like Avatar, and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, relied on it. But for the Memex video, the creators used 94 cameras, whereas some Hollywood studios have been reported to use seven, to capture Nesbitt’s glowing skin in the most microscopic detail possible. (via Freaky 3-D Scanning Turns Human Skin Into Art | WIRED)