Lighting System for Visual Perception Enhancement in Volume Rendering

Lei Wang
Arie Kaufman

We introduce a lighting system that enhances the visual cues in a rendered image for the perception of 3D volumetric objects. We divide the lighting effects into global and local effects, and deploy three types of directional lights: the key light and accessory lights (fill and detail lights). The key light provides both lighting effects and carries the visual cues for the perception of local and global shapes and depth. The cues for local shapes are conveyed by gradient; those for global shapes are carried by shadows; and those for depth are provided by shadows and translucent objects. Fill lights produce global effects to increase the perceptibility. Detail lights generate local effects to improve the cues for local shapes. Our method quantifies the perception and uses an exhaustive search to set the lights. It configures accessory lights with the consideration of preserving the global impression conveyed by the key light. It ensures the feeling of smooth light movements in animations. With simplification, it achieves interactive frame rates and produces results that are visually indistinguishable from results using the nonsimplified algorithm. The major contributions of this paper are our lighting system, perception measurement and lighting design algorithm with our indistinguishable simplification.