Research Projects




Analysis of Factors Affecting the Contrast Effect for Total Appearance

In our everyday lives, we are surrounded by many material objects with various appearances. We judge the total appearance (e.g., glossiness, transparency, and roughness) of objects and their subjective values. In the field of vision science, various low-level visual contrast effects have been studied to determine criteria for the different appearance of target pairs with different colour, luminance, texture, and shape. However, investigations of the high-level contrast effect for total appearance are rare. In this study, we experimentally investigate the generation of the contrast effect for total appearance and analyse factors affecting it using subjective experiments. Two total appearance attributes, that is, roughness and glossiness, were analysed. In our approach, it was assumed that two high-level contrast effects are generated by the combination of low-level contrast effects such as luminance, imagecontrast, and sharpness. Based on multiple regression analyses of the psychophysical experiments, the contrast effect of the sharpness influences the roughness (by 50% to 70%). Furthermore, the results indicate that the glossiness contrast effect is affected by approximately 80% of the contrast effects of luminance and image-contrast.

Parameter estimation of PuRet algorithm for managing appearance of material objects on display devices

In addition to colors and shapes, factors of material appearance such as glossiness, translucency, and roughness are important for reproducing the realistic feeling of an image. In general, these perceptual qualities are often degraded when reproduced as a digital color image. The authors have aimed to edit the material appearance of an image as measured by a general camera and reproduce it on a general display device. In their previous study, the authors found that the pupil diameter decreases slightly when observing the surface properties of an object and proposed an algorithm called “PuRet” for enhancing the material appearance based on the physiological models of the pupil and retina. However, to obtain an accurate reproduction, it was necessary to manually adjust two types of adaptation parameters in PuRet as related to the retinal response for each scene and the particular characteristics of the display device. This study realizes the management of the appearance of material objects on display devices by automatically deriving the optimum parameters in PuRet from captured RAW image data. The results indicate that the authors succeeded in estimating an adaptation parameter from the median value of the scene luminance as estimated from a RAW image. They also succeeded in estimating another adaptation parameter from the average value of the scene luminance and the luminance contrast value of the output display device. As a result of an experiment using an unknown display device that was not applied to derive the estimation model, it was confirmed that the proposed model works properly.

Random Spray Retinex Extensions Considering Region of Interest and Eye Movements

The Random spray Retinex (RSR) algorithm was developed by taking into consideration the mathematical description of Milano-Retinex. The RSR substituted random paths with random sprays. Mimicking some characteristics of the human visual system (HVS), this article proposes two variants of RSR adding a mechanism of region of interest (ROI). In the first proposed model, a cone distribution based on anatomical data is considered as ROI. In the second model, the visual resolution depending on the visual field based on the knowledge of visual information processing is considered as ROI. We have measured actual eye movements using an eye-tracking system. By using the eye-tracking data, we have simulated the HVS using test images. Results show an interesting qualitative computation of the appearance of the processed area around real gaze points.

Relationship between faithfulness and preference of stars in a planetarium

A planetarium imitates a starry sky with physical and technical limitations using a dome, projector, and light source. It is widely used for entertainment, and astronomy and physics educations. In our previous study, we investigated the evaluation for faithful reproduction of a star field in a planetarium by performing psychometric experiments with 20 observers for plural projection patterns with different reproduction factors (color, luminance, and size of projected stars). In this study, we investigate the relationship between faithfulness and preference of a star field in a planetarium through a psychometric experiment with 47 observers. The experimental procedure followed the previous study. The rating of faithfulness improved for the projection pattern with a smaller star size. For the preference evaluation, the projection pattern with low luminance significantly lowered the preference rating. The results of the experiment indicate that the preferable star reproduction was different between male and female observers, whereas the faithful star reproduction was not significantly different in the evaluations between male and female observers. The male observers sought a faithful star reproduction as the preferred reproduction. In contrast, the female observers did not feel the faithful star reproduction preferable, and evaluated the more brilliant star reproduction as the preferred reproduction. These results were not dependent on the experience in astronomical observations.

Investigation of metallic color perception using real-world materials

Metallic colors have a unique appearance of glossiness with features such as highlights, contrast, and reflections on their surface, and therefore, metallic objects are very attractive to humans. Especially, gold, silver, and copper colors are familiar metals used as decorative materials, coins, and other furnishings. However, the mechanism and condition of metallic perception have not been fully investigated. There are a few studies for investigating metallic perception using rendered patches or images, but there is no study using real-world. In our previous study, we developed a simple representation technique that made real objects appear to be made of gold by projecting a solid color onto a target nonmetallic object. By using the representation technique, in this study, we have further investigated the perception of metallic appearance such as gold, silver, and copper using real-world materials, and analyzed the difference between these metallic perceptions. Our results indicate that the perception of the metallic object is different for gold, silver, and copper. Our new findings are as follows: the glitter required for the perception of gold and silver becomes an obstacle to the perception of copper; the metallic perception reveals that learning experience might be strongly affecting; and luminance adjustment is sensitive to the perception of metallic objects.

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