Tabletop computed lighting for practical digital photography

Ankit Mohan*, Reynold Bailey, Jonathan Waite, Jack Tumblin, Cindy Grimm, Bobby Bodenheimer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


We apply simplified image-based lighting methods to reduce the equipment, cost, time, and specialized skills required for high-quality photographic lighting of desktop-sized static objects such as museum artifacts. We place the object and a computer-steered moving-head spotlight inside a simple foam-core enclosure and use a camera to record photos as the light scans the box interior. Optimization, guided by interactive user sketching, selects a small set of these photos whose weighted sum best matches the user-defined target sketch. Unlike previous image-based relighting efforts, our method requires only a single area light source, yet it can achieve high-resolution light positioning to avoid multiple sharp shadows. A reduced version uses only a handheld light and may be suitable for battery-powered field photography equipment that fits into a backpack.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)652-662
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2007


  • Controllable lighting
  • Digital photography
  • Enclosure lighting
  • Handheld lighting
  • Image-based lighting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Signal Processing
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design

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