This is not the first time we introduce a Redfield product. The Fractalius and Sketch Master Photoshop plugins were already discussed here. Now we look at a much simpler but similarly original plugin.
Color, contrast, lightness adjustment? No. Skin retouching? Come on! Drawing or painting effects? No way! Redfield Face Control is a face distortion tool that can be used to create cartoon-like pictures out of portrait photos, or slightly alter the facial expression of your subject.
The developer has another similar plugin called Expressionist, which offers much more settings, but also costs money. Face Control is totally free of charge, but it is quite simple as well.
You can download it from this web page. Click Download on the left. SetupFaceControl.exe, weighing only 240K, requires only a couple of clicks and a few seconds to install the plugin under Photoshop. After starting PS, click Filter/Redfield/Face Control. Was it easy? Sure, and it was the more complex part.
The main dialog of the plugin offers a preview on the left—without zooming, but you may not need that anyway—and a single slider called Expression on the right. This does what its name says—changes expression.
Drag the slider to the right to increase the darker areas in the picture. In portraits, these are typically the eyes, and often the mouth and nose. An example of the default setting of +25:
Using lower values will slightly enhance the look of the eyes. On the other hand, a Maximum value will result in a cartoon-like image with thick lips, a snub nose and alien eyes. Also keep in mind that in the distorted areas, sharpness will deteriorate:
Dragging the slider in the negative direction, you get an opposite effect. Lighter areas will swell, that is, facial surface will wax while eyes and mouth wane. An extreme example will look like this:
So, Face Control is a funny little tool which can slightly change facial expressions, or make a joke of your friends with roughly distorted portraits. When using it for funny effects, you may want to combine it with a plugin or technique that applies a drawing-like effect for an even deeper cartoon feel.