Non-Rigid Photometric Stereo with Colored Lights

Example reconstruction

Example input image from dancing video Example 3D reconstruction


We present an algorithm and the associated capture methodology to acquire and track the detailed 3D shape, bends, and wrinkles of deforming surfaces. Moving 3D data has been difficult to obtain by methods that rely on known surface features, structured light, or silhouettes. Multispectral photometric stereo is an attractive alternative because it can recover a dense normal field from an un-textured surface. We show how to capture such data and register it over time to generate a single deforming surface.

Experiments were performed on video sequences of untextured cloth, filmed under spatially separated red, green, and blue light sources. Our first finding is that using zero-depth-silhouettes as the initial boundary condition already produces rather smoothly varying per-frame reconstructions with high detail. Second, when these 3D reconstructions are augmented with 2D optical flow, one can register the first frame’s reconstruction to every subsequent frame.



Video Normals from Colored Lights
Gabriel J. Brostow1, Carlos Hernández2, George Vogiatzis3, Björn Stenger4, Roberto Cipolla5
1University College London, 2Google Inc., 3Aston University, 4Toshiba Research Europe, 5University of Cambridge
Published in IEEE TPAMI, Vol. 33, No. 10, pages 2104-2114, October 2011.

poster [paper pdf, 12.7 MB]


Non-Rigid Photometric Stereo with Colored Lights
Carlos Hernández1, George Vogiatzis1, Gabriel J. Brostow2, Björn Stenger1, Roberto Cipolla2
1Toshiba Research Europe, 2University of Cambridge
Published in ICCV 2007

poster [paper pdf, 5.5 MB]
poster [poster pdf, 1.1MB]


Downloadable Videos

Old + New [41 Mb mpeg4 avi]
Short [23 Mb mpeg4 avi]
Short Small [5.7 Mb mpg1]

Results (ICCV07)

New Results


Input sequences and light calibration files
DirectShowParser (a.k.a. mxf2avi) to extract frames from mxf files
Link to codecs + utility for extracting frames [alternative]

Mesh data for "sweater" and "pirate shirt" sequence
TexMesh3D to view tri files
Meshlab to view obj files


Gabriel Brostow
Carlos Hernández
George Vogiatzis
Bjorn Stenger
Roberto Cipolla