Non-photorealistic rendering – Artwork


Non-photorealistic rendering (NPR) is an area of computer graphics that focuses on enabling a wide variety of expressive styles for digital art.

In contrast to traditional computer graphics, which has focused on photorealism, NPR is inspired by artistic styles such as painting,drawingtechnical illustration, and animated cartoons.

NPR has appeared in movies and video games in the form of “toon shading“, as well as in scientific visualizationarchitectural illustration and experimental animation. An example of a modern use of this method is that of cel-shaded animation.

NPR = Art Amplification not Artificial Art

Use of computer vision as a tool for processing photographs and video into artwork.

Non-photorealistic rendering from photographs most often uses “filters” that change a small image patch into a brush stroke.

But making brush strokes can never transform a photograph into art; artists change the shape and size, the colour and the contrast of objects so that a viewer gaze is directed. This requires the artist (or computer) to understand the scene as a whole, so that the relative salience of objects is assessed through seeing and expressed via drawing (which we take to include painting, and artwork of all kinds).   In short we say drawing implies seeing (seeing is necessary for drawing).

One should regard artwork as salience maps that model the visual world.

changes of shape, perspective, distortions in time that is typically seen in real art.

Works of art are salience maps, meaning that when anyone draws (no matter how skilled they  might be) the result is a map of the most important visual elements needed to understand a scene. Without this artists would not be able to draw at all, instead they would record all parts of the scene without discrimination – which is exactly what photographs do.

  • Artwork is unlike photographs in very many ways, one of the most important is that artists almost never use photographic like perspective. instead, artist of all skill levels have drawn what they know.
  • Artists tend to sketch the overall shape of objects, filling in details later if they want to.

The salience of a visual element is not an inherent property of the object, rather salience depends on all other objects in the scene – it is a relative, non-local property.


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