Patch-Based Uncalibrated Photometric Stereo Under Natural Illumination
This paper presents a photometric stereo method that works with unknown natural illumination without any calibration objects or initial guess of the target shape. To solve this challenging problem, we propose the use of an equivalent directional lighting model for small surface patches consisting of slowly varying normals, and solve each patch up to an arbitrary orthogonal ambiguity. We further build the patch connections by extracting consistent surface normal pairs via spatial overlaps among patches and intensity profiles. Guided by these connections, the local ambiguities are unified to a global orthogonal one through Markov Random Field optimization and rotation averaging. After applying the integrability constraint, our solution contains only a binary ambiguity, which could be easily removed. Experiments using both synthetic and real-world datasets show our method provides even comparable results to calibrated methods.
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