breaking down nose wrinkler (AU9)

Screenshot 2020-03-24 04.09.31

The following text is a breakdown of my nose wrinkler video (viewable here or in the “Timestamp” section). Watch the video and refer to the corresponding notes to learn about:

  • the evolution of layered expressions
  • the differences between nose wrinkler and similar expressions
  • nose wrinkler with and without various actions –
    • outer brow raiser
    • brow lowerer
    • upper lid raiser
    • cheek raiser
    • lid tightener
    • upper lip raiser
    • lip corner lowerer
    • chin raiser
    • lip tightener
    • lip presser

Notes are written in Facial Action Coding System action units. While I do provide a translation of the anatomy name to FACS name/FACS code, I want to stress the utility of learning FACS nomenclature.


WHY YOU SHOULD LEARN FACS (FACIAL ACTION CODING SYSTEM):

  1. So you can understand my facial coding notes. Duh.
  2. It’s way easier to call a brow furrow – “4” – than – “corrugator supercilii, depressor supercilii, depressor glabellae.” I mean, yeah, I voluntarily took a year of Latin in college, but 1 vs. 16 syllables can make a big difference in time and breath.
  3. The orbicularis oris is a mess. It does too many things. Latin muscle naming just doesn’t do the trick. FACS breaks down overachieving muscles into recognizable movements. 

MUSCLE CHEAT CODES

  • AU 1
    • FACS name → inner brow raiser
    • muscle/s frontalis, pars medialis
  • AU 2
    • FACS name → outer brow raiser
    • muscle/s frontalis, pars lateralis
  • AU 4
    • FACS name → brow lowerer
    • muscle/s corrugator supercilii, depressor supercilii, depressor glabellae (aka procerus)
  • AU 05
    • FACS nameupper lid raiser
    • muscle/s levator palpebrae superioris
  • AU 06
    • FACS namecheek raiser
    • muscle/s orbicularis oculi, pars orbitalis
  • AU 7
    • FACS name → lid tightener
    • muscle/s  orbicularis oculi, pars palpebralis
  • AU 9
    • FACS namenose wrinkler
    • muscle/s levator labii superioris alaquae nasi
  • AU 10
    • FACS nameupper lip raiser
    • muscle/s  levator labii superioris
  • AU 15
    • FACS namelip corner depressor
    • muscle/s depressor anguli oris (aka triangularis)
  • AU 17
    • FACS namechin raiser
    • muscle/s mentalis
  • AU 23
    • FACS namelip tightener
    • muscle/s orbicularis oris
  • AU 24
    • FACS namelip presser
    • muscle/s orbicularis oris
  • AU 25
    • FACS namelips part
    • muscle/s orbicularis oris

TIMESTAMPS

NOTE 1: Until 01:23 I do not code any lower face actions besides 9 and 10; however, in some cases, the 9s are paired with 17.
NOTE 2: Every time the lips are parted, assume AU 25 (lips part).
NOTE 3: I did not code the prevalent nostril flaring, but it’s there. Watch out!

  • 00:02beginning of 9 with no 4
    • A common mistake I see in expression shape building is → the erroneous addition of AU4 to AU9 shapes. While AU9 does in fact pull down the inner portion of the brows, this pull does not involve AU4. 
    • When 4 is added to 9, the brows will not simply be pulled down by their inner tips. They will be pushed down from the outer brow area, typically where corrugator is. You can compare the difference between a 4+9 and a 9 in the next timestamp below (@ ~5s).
    • In my scientific journal adventures, I have found that some people – more than you may think – are missing corrugator. (Ozel Conspiracy Theory 86,000: Emilia Clarke is such a power brow contortionist, because she’s missing corrugator.)
    • In the case that someone is missing corrugator, look for additional movement in the middle forehead. This additional movement will likely come from procerus. When procerus kicks in, you should see forehead bunching out of sync with the movement of 9. In the scenario of simultaneous activation, it is harder to break down the movement. You would need to refer back to different movements of 9 and compare the different versions.
  • 00:05addition of 4 and slight 7 to the 9
    • Notice how this new addition of 4 not only further pushes down the brows but pushes down the upper eyelids as well.
    • It is not just 4+9 vs. 9 you should consider. You will also want to be careful regarding the distinction of 7+9 vs. 9. While 9 does narrow the eyelids, especially when intense, the way it narrows the eyelids is different from the way 7 narrows the eyelids.
    • 9 narrows the lids by pushing up the infraorbital triangle, whereas 7 narrows the lids by pushing the skin under the eyes (the eye bag area) toward the nose.
    • (Refer below to my 80s retro chic image mapping out the “infraorbital triangle.”)
      • infraorbital triangle
    • If you want to create a clean shape, be very careful with how you craft your 9-based eye narrowing.
  • 00:084 increases, 10 is added (4+7+9+10)
    • Another common mistake I see in expression shape building is → confusion between AU9 and AU10-based upper lip pulling. 9 and 10 are different actions. While both pull up the upper lip, they do so in different ways. 10 typically causes the laugh lines to round out, while 9 usually gives them a straighter look. If you see a 10 creeping in to an already-present 9, you should see the laugh lines fanning out and the area near the nostrils widening.
    • In this case, when 10 pops in, you can clearly see a nice movement in the skin around the laugh lines as it thickens and rounds.
  • RESETaka – My face has returned to neutral.
  • 00:12 9 comes back
  • 00:134 kicks in (4+9)
  • 00:147 kicks in slightly (4+7+9)
  • RESET
  • 00:17 9 starts to flutter (flutter: subtle and unstable flicker of an action)
    • This low-intensity 9 movement may look like 10, because the 9 is so subtle; however, you can see the pull above the side of the nose and the slight lowering of the inner brow happening in sync with the nose raising.
  • 00:18Break time! *face shake*
  • 00:21 – 00:479 starts again – 9 back and forth, different angles
    • You may see a couple outer brow raise twitches during this interval. (Fluttering is hard, okay?)
  • RESET
  • 00:48 → 9 starts again
  • 00:494 is added to 9 and then 7 is added
  • RESET
  • 00:529 is back
  • RESET
  • 00:53 4 joins 4+9
  • RESET
  • 00:569 again
  • 00:57 4 added and some 7 (4+7+9)
  • RESET
  • 01:009 again – then later in the second, 7 joins 9
  • RESET
  • 01:039 again then later in 01:03, 4 is added to the 9
  • RESET
  • 01:049 again
  • 01:05 4 is added and then 10 is also added (4+9+10) and then 7 is added (4+7+9+10) then 6 is added (4+6+7+9+10)
  • RESET
  • 01:06 9 again
  • 01:074 joins 9 then strong 10 joins (4+7+9+10)
  • 01:08 nearly all of 9 is released, leaving only a strong 10
  • RESET
  • 01:08(later in the second) 9 again
  • 01:09 9 then 10 added (9+10)
  • RESET
  • 01:1110 on screen left with traces of 9 → then higher intensity 9 added
  • RESET
  • 01:11 9 again
  • 01:1210 added to 9 (9+10)
  • RESET
  • 01:14 9 again
  • 01:15one-sided 10 (screen right) added to 9
  • RESET
  • 01:175
  • RESET
  • 01:17 9 again
  • 01:185 added to 9 (5+9) → then 5 intensifies while 9 stays
  • RESET
  • 01:19 9 again
  • 01:20intense 5 added to 9 (5+9)
  • 01:217 added to 5+9 → (5+7+9)
  • 01:226 added 5+7+9 → 5+6+7+9
  • 01:232+17 added to 5+6+7+9 → 2+5+6+7+9+17
  • 01:2410 added to 2+5+6+7+9+17 → 2+5+6+7+9+10+17
  • 01:25 4 added to 2+5+6+7+9+10+17 → 2+4+5+6+7+9 then 15+17 added → 2+4+5+6+7+9+10+15+17 
  • 01:2624 added to 2+4+5+6+7+9+10+15+17 and 5 becomes relaxed → 2+4+6+7+9+10+15+17+24
  • 01:27increased 10 to 2+4+6+7+9+10+15+17+24 then 24 goes away and is replaced by 23 → 2+4+6+7+9+10+15+17+23
  • 01:29 → Okay, I couldn’t help it. I lol’d.

 

Stills from the evolution of layered actions on top of 9.

nose wrinkler and more
Highly recommend right clicking and selecting “Open Image in New Tab” to see larger version.

Screenshot 2020-03-24 04.09.31nose wrinkler and other combos

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