Light stage super-resolution: continuous high-frequency relighting

Tiancheng Sun1 Zexiang Xu1 Xiuming Zhang2 Sean Fanello3
Christoph Rhemann3 Paul Debevec3 Jonathan T. Barron4 Yun-Ta Tsai4 Ravi Ramamoorthi1
1University of California, San Diego 2Massachusetts Institute of Technology 3Google 4Google Research


The light stage has been widely used in computer graphics for the past two decades, primarily to enable the relighting of human faces. By capturing the appearance of the human subject under different light sources, one obtains the light transport matrix of that subject, which enables image-based relighting in novel environments. However, due to the finite number of lights in the stage, the light transport matrix only represents a sparse sampling on the entire sphere. As a consequence, relighting the subject with a point light or a directional source that does not coincide exactly with one of the lights in the stage requires interpolation and resampling the images corresponding to nearby lights, and this leads to ghosting shadows, aliased specularities, and other artifacts. To ameliorate these artifacts and produce better results under arbitrary high-frequency lighting, this paper proposes a learning-based solution for the “super-resolution” of scans of human faces taken from a light stage. Given an arbitrary “query” light direction, our method aggregates the captured images corresponding to neighboring lights in the stage, and uses a neural network to synthesize a rendering of the face that appears to be illuminated by a “virtual” light source at the query location. This neural network must circumvent the inherent aliasing and regularity of the light stage data that was used for training, which we accomplish through the use of regularized traditional interpolation methods within our network. Our learned model is able to produce renderings for arbitrary light directions that exhibit realistic shadows and specular highlights, and is able to generalize across a wide variety of subjects. Our super-resolution approach enables more accurate renderings of human subjects under detailed environment maps, or the construction of simpler light stages that contain fewer light sources while still yielding comparable quality renderings as light stages with more densely sampled lights.


Supplementary Material
Video (~200M)
Implementation (Please email Tiancheng Sun if you need to run images on our network.)


  title={Light stage super-resolution: continuous high-frequency relighting.},
  author={Sun, Tiancheng and Xu, Zexiang and Zhang, Xiuming and Fanello, Sean and Rhemann, Christoph and Debevec, Paul and Tsai, Yun-Ta and Barron, Jonathan T and Ramamoorthi, Ravi},
  journal={ACM Transactions on Graphics (TOG)},