Brain Activation in Response to Caricatures Blake Reitz & Alex Lehmicke University of Wisconsin-Stout
- Caricatures can be found in all forms of media.
- Mauro & Kubovy found that caricatures (AKA “Super-Portraits”) were encoded quicker than real faces in same/different reaction tests.
- N170 – ERP in the Fusiform Face Area (FFA) related to face processing
- Left brain – “Part-based processing”
- Right brain – “Holistic processing”
- Do caricatures map more accurately to the brain then real faces?
- Do they take less effort to process?
- The Temporal Lobes (T5 & T6) will show stronger activation for caricatures over real faces.
- The Parietal Lobe (Pz) will show quicker N170 activation for caricatures over real faces.
Mean EEG – Parietal, T5, T6
- Arrows denotes N170 ERP
- Caricatures showed quicker Pz activation than real faces
Real Faces vs. Caricatures – Parietal
- Blue Arrow shows increasing Pz activation in the 400+ millisecond range.
- Area tied to novelty
- Greater for caricatures
Scott McCloud’s scale of realism in characterized faces
Real Faces vs. Caricatures – Left Temporal
- Pz activation at 250 milliseconds for real faces
- Pz is inverted, as it is located above the primary visual cortex
- Materials & Methods
- EEG were recorded using the 64-channel HydroCel Geodesic Sensor Net
- Each face was followed by a rest period
- During the rest period, there was an on-screen questionnaire on the familiarity of the face.
- Pictures were controlled for color and contrast.
- Familiarity was controlled for by using pictures of well-known male celebrities.
Sample Caricature and photograph used in pilot study
- This study is currently ongoing.
- The initial data supports half of our hypothesis.
- -There is evidence that caricatures are processed quicker than real faces.
- -There was little significant variation found in the left and right temporal lobes.
- The pilot study suggests that the caricatures and real faces were not processed differently in each hemisphere of the brain, but are processed differently overall.
- Our study supports Mauro and Kubovy’s hypothesis from a psychophysical perspective, future studies might find further evidence in support of the “super-portrait” hypothesis.
- Participants viewed 80 faces
- 20 real faces
- 20 caricatures
- Each face was viewed twice
- Each face was seen for one second
Real Faces vs. Caricatures – Right Temporal
- Real faces activated slightly quicker in T5 & T6
- Caricatures showed stronger activation in T5 and T6 than real faces
- Pilot Study notes:
- EEG was recorded from five subjects from the three locations using Biopac.
- Participants observed sixty faces (two sets of 15 real faces and 15 caricatures).
Thanks to Doctors Desiree Budd, Mike Donnelly, and Peizong Li
Mauro, R. & Kubovy, M. (1992)
Caricature and face recognition.