Direct Shape Regression Networks for End-to-End Face Alignment

Xin Miao, Xiantong Zhen, Xianglong Liu, Cheng Deng, Vassilis Athitsos, Heng Huang; The IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR), 2018, pp. 5040-5049


Face alignment has been extensively studied in computer vision community due to its fundamental role in facial analysis, but it remains an unsolved problem. The major challenges lie in the highly nonlinear relationship between face images and associated facial shapes, which is coupled by underlying correlation of landmarks. Existing methods mainly rely on cascaded regression, suffering from intrinsic shortcomings, e.g., strong dependency on initialization and failure to exploit landmark correlations. In this paper, we propose the direct shape regression network (DSRN) for end-to-end face alignment by jointly handling the aforementioned challenges in a unified framework. Specifically, by deploying doubly convolutional layer and by using the Fourier feature pooling layer proposed in this paper, DSRN efficiently constructs strong representations to disentangle highly nonlinear relationships between images and shapes; by incorporating a linear layer of low-rank learning, DSRN effectively encodes correlations of landmarks to improve performance. DSRN leverages the strengths of kernels for nonlinear feature extraction and neural networks for structured prediction, and provides the first end-to-end learning architecture for direct face alignment. Its effectiveness and generality are validated by extensive experiments on five benchmark datasets, including AFLW, 300W, CelebA, MAFL, and 300VW. All empirical results demonstrate that DSRN consistently produces high performance and in most cases surpasses state-of-the-art.

Related Material

author = {Miao, Xin and Zhen, Xiantong and Liu, Xianglong and Deng, Cheng and Athitsos, Vassilis and Huang, Heng},
title = {Direct Shape Regression Networks for End-to-End Face Alignment},
booktitle = {The IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR)},
month = {June},
year = {2018}