Emotional Facial Pictures Database

Warsaw Set of Emotional Facial Expression Pictures  (WSEFEP) contains 210 of high-quality pictures of 30 individuals. They display six basic emotions (enjoyment, fear, disgust, anger, sadness, surprise) and neutral displays. The pictures were carefully selected to fit the criteria of basic emotions and evaluated by independent judges. Each one has its own measurement of intensity and purity of displayed emotions as well as FACS Action Units codes.

The set is widely recognized by the scientific community and frequently used as research material – click here to see a list of publication that refers to WSEFEP.


Here’s the short story of how the set was created:

  • We selected 100 individuals from a pool of over 1,000 actors, actresses (both amateur and professional), models, and students who had submitted their applications to the actors’ agency. Each of them participated in a one-hour individual photo session with us. We then identified the top 65 individuals who demonstrated the best ability to express emotions and control their facial muscles.

  • We provided them with exercises to further develop their emotional expression skills, and subsequently, we conducted another two-hour individual photo session with them. After completing the main sessions, we evaluated the photos of each participant and selected the best pictures (up to 5 for each expression) that met the criteria for expressing basic emotions, according to FACS (Facial Action Coding System) developed by Ekman, Friesen, and Hager in 2002.

  • Following this, we validated the selected pictures to choose the best ones.

Here you can find a detailed description of how the set was created and validated.