Top Downloaded Article

Professor Nigel John recently collaborated on an article “Appearance Modelling of Living Human Tissues” with colleagues from universities in Brazil, the USA and Canada.

Wiley have informed us that the article is amongst the top 10% most downloaded papers from work published between January 2018 and December 2019. It is therefore generating immediate impact and helping to raise the visibility of the Computer Graphics Forum journal.

One of the techniques reviewed in the article is using a BRDF of living brain tissue
Figure 1: One of the techniques reviewed in the article is using a BRDF of living brain tissue [PNG]


The visual fidelity of realistic renderings in Computer Graphics depends fundamentally upon how we model the appearance of objects resulting from the interaction between light and matter reaching the eye. In this paper, we survey the research addressing appearance modelling of living human tissue. Among the many classes of natural materials already researched in Computer Graphics, living human tissues such as blood and skin have recently seen an increase in attention from graphics research. There is already an incipient but substantial body of literature on this topic, but we also lack a structured review as presented here. We introduce a classification for the approaches using the four types of human tissues as classifiers. We show a growing trend of solutions that use first principles from Physics and Biology as fundamental knowledge upon which the models are built. The organic quality of visual results provided by these Biophysical approaches is mainly determined by the optical properties of biophysical components interacting with light. Beyond just picture making, these models can be used in predictive simulations, with the potential for impact in many other areas.


  1. Nunes, A. L. P., Maciel, A., Meyer, G. W., John, N. W., Baranoski, G. V. G., & Walter, M. (2019). Appearance Modeling of Living Human Tissues. Computer Graphics Forum, 38(6), 43–65. [bib]