Joint Super-Resolution and Alignment of Tiny Faces
Super-resolution (SR) and landmark localization of tiny faces are highly correlated tasks. On the one hand, landmark localization could obtain higher accuracy with faces of high-resolution (HR). On the other hand, face SR would benefit from prior knowledge of facial attributes such as landmarks. Thus, we propose a joint alignment and SR network to simultaneously detect facial landmarks and super-resolve tiny faces. More specifically, a shared deep encoder is applied to extract features for both tasks by leveraging complementary information. To exploit representative power of the hierarchical encoder, intermediate layers of a shared feature extraction module are fused to form efficient feature representations. The fused features are then fed to task-specific modules to detect landmarks and super-resolve face images in parallel. Extensive experiments demonstrate that the proposed model significantly outperforms the state-of-the-art in both landmark localization and SR of faces. We show a large improvement for landmark localization of tiny faces (i.e., 16 × 16). Furthermore, the proposed framework yields comparable results for landmark localization on low-resolution (LR) faces (i.e., 64 × 64) to existing methods on HR (i.e., 256 × 256). As for SR, the proposed method recovers sharper edges and more details from LR face images than other state-of-the-art methods, which we demonstrate qualitatively and quantitatively.