We have the utmost respect for stop motion animators. Their work is painstaking, requires unwavering attention to detail and more pre-planning then you can ever imagine. One of the challenges they have with stop motion character animation is when a character needs to convey emotions with facial movements.
This is where we come in with a possible solution. Instead of the traditional way of continuously changing the face of each model, we could augment that particular effect with CG by doing a full or partial 3D facial replacement and have full manipulation of the doll’s face. Thus, we retain the rich texture and detail of the environment, clothes and hair of each model but have the benefits of a fully articulating face able to mimic any emotion and even lip sync to conversation in post.
The above sample is a test of the feasibility of both a full and partial replacement and how it can, when done properly, blend perfectly with the style of the stop motion animation. We look forward to push the envelope further with this concept so we can reap the visual benefits of physical stop motion models and 3D mapped faces.