We live in an electronic world, constantly connected digitally through the Internet. Increasingly more of our communication, education, and entertainment, from mobile phones to e-books to television and digital theater is pictorial. Where is this technology going, where did it come from, and what will be our future graphic environments? Much of these answers depend on how we see or how we interpret what we see and is dependent on recent research in perception psychology.
For decades I have taught an interdisciplinary course designed to introduce students in the creative arts, science and computer engineering to the concepts of digital pictorial representation, image capture and display. How do we represent 3D space with 2D images? How are digital pictures acquired or made? How will pictures be displayed with the technologies of the future? Topics include perspective representations, color perception, display technology, digital photography, computer graphics modeling and rendering, user interfaces and touch panel displays, and 2D, 3D and stereo animation. The latter part of the course describes future technologies including digital photorealism, photographic, laser and infra-red 3D geometry capture and virtual (VR) and augmented reality (AR).
Although many of these topics are currently taught in technically oriented computer graphics courses, the ideas were actually first demonstrated by architects and artists of the past. Historical precedents from the Renaissance architects, including the works of Brunelleschi and Borromini, and artists such as Vermeer, Albers, Seurat, Monet and other Impressionists illustrate how many of the modern computer algorithms of today have much in common with today’s digital approaches. In this short workshop, three or four topics from the Visual Imaging course will be presented to illustrate the very strong relationships existing between art and science. Examples will include perspective representations, hidden surface algorithms, tone mapping and edge sharpening enhancements, color perception, and issues related to Virtual Reality.
Professor Greenberg is the Director of the Program of Computer Graphics at Cornell and teaches in the Departments of Art, Architecture and Computer Science. In addition to government funding, his research in this area is supported by Pixar, DreamWorks, Microsoft, Intel, Oculus, Valve and Autodesk. Among his academic achievements, he is the recipient of the prestigious Coons Award from SIGGRAPH, and has been recognized as a Fellow of the ACM and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and a member of the National Academy of Engineering. Thirteen of his students have won Technical “Oscars” or the SIGGRAPH Computer Graphics Achievement Award.