From wannabe gangster to would-be 2-D heartthrob in just seconds.

Last week, our ace reporter Mr. Sato stopped by the ATM to get some cash, and was startled when the machines greeted him with portraits and voices of hot anime men. Honestly, he was also a little hurt, because even though he’s a very fashionable guy, no banking conglomerates have asked him to endorse their financial services.

Clearly the solution is for Mr. Sato himself to become a beautiful boy of the 2-D type. The problem, though, is that while he’s a man of myriad talents, manga illustration isn’t one of them. Luckily, though, he found a way to transform himself into a delicately drawn version by using the Meitu photo app’s Andy Artbot Tech Magic feature.

The app lets you select a preexisting photo and convert it to a pseudo-illustrated aesthetic. Scrolling through his phone’s photo gallery, Mr. Sato decided to really test the app’s powers by selecting a picture he took right after he’d had his hair done in the punch perm style, a popular hairdo among construction workers, street thugs, and yakuza members.

After a few more taps, it was time for the app to do its work. The process took only a few brief moments, and Mr. Sato looked down at his phone to see…

…a complete stranger staring back at him!

“Who…who are you?!?” he shouted at the screen, but the only response was the unwavering gaze of those gentle gray irises.

In wiping away blemishes and stains from his skin, it was like the app had also brushed away any malice or selfishness from his heart. And though shojo manga Sato was already plenty dreamy in his initial iteration, some tinkering with the filters made him even more ready to melt the hearts of lonely female readers.

“This summer, I want to fall in love for real.”

OK, so the Andy app can do amazing things when the starting point is an intensely rugged photo. But what happens when you give it a goofier input, like this satisfied-looking yet silly selfie?

It turns out that’s not a problem either.

Perhaps because the lines in Mr. Sato’s face in the second photo were softer to begin with, this time Andy’s revisions made him look totally at peace with himself. As a matter of fact, by the time he was done playing with the filters, the resulting photo gave the impression of someone who’d moved beyond the pain felt by earthly desires, and was on the cusp of reaching nirvana.

Still, if any of you would like to print out a picture of manga Sato and stuff cash into his shirt, feel free.

Related: Meitu (iOS, Android)
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