Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there!


Now, on to the topic of this post.


A Simple Way to Create Character Portraits


I’ve been working hard on my latest novel, Bodacious Creed and the Jade Lake, the sequel to my popular book, Bodacious Creed: a Steampunk Zombie Western.

One thing I have fun with is generating random faces on the website This Person Does Not Exist, which uses an adversarial learning network to create photorealistic images of people who, you guessed it, do not exist.

I’ve written about this site before and how it helps me come up with portraits of my characters, which I then use on my series bible site. (Check it out if you’re curious! Only some of the information is available to the public, but it’s enough to learn a bit about my fictional world.)

The other day, I decided to use FaceApp on some of those fictional faces. This is a lot of fun. It’s especially entertaining to use the gender-swap feature. It gives me more faces to choose from when casting my characters.




Here are a few examples. On some of these, I also changed the background, and on one, I made the gender-swapped version younger. FaceApp has a ton of interesting options.


Writers can have fun visualizing characters with this, and artists can practice drawing or painting portraits of unique faces. Of course, you can also just spend a few hours having fun using these apps together.

I hope you enjoy this simple way to create character portraits that I devised. Have fun with it!

Now, back to writing my novel!

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“If a nation loses its storytellers, it loses its childhood.”— Peter Handke