The Lumigraph

Steven J. Gortler
Radek Grzeszczuk
Richard Szeliski
Michael F. Cohen
Microsoft Research

This paper discusses a new method for capturing the complete appearance of both synthetic and real world objects and scenes, representing this information, and then using this representation to render images of the object from new camera positions. Unlike the shape capture process traditionally used in computer vision and the rendering process traditionally used in computer graphics, our approach does not rely on geometric representations. Instead we sample and reconstruct a 4D function, which we call a Lumigraph. The Lumigraph is a subset of the complete plenoptic function that describes the flow of light at all positions in all directions. With the Lumigraph, new images of the object can be generated very quickly, independent of the geometric or illumination complexity of the scene or object. The paper discusses a complete working system including the capture of samples, the construction of the Lumigraph, and the subsequent rendering of images from this new representation.

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