Course Information

Course Description

This course is devoted to cultivating research skills in computer graphics and related areas. These include choosing a problem, focusing on specific publication-size questions, identifying the right techniques, writing and presenting. The instructors will closely guide the students through two projects, providing constructive feedback on all stages of the process.

We will explore the research process through the theme of computational aesthetics and creativity support. This broad theme provides fertile ground for innovative work. Several class sessions will focus on specific aspects of the research process, such as problem selection and effective writing. We will also analyze a number of recent publications in detail, focusing on the factors that led to success.



Day Topic Readings
March 29 Course introduction
March 31 Art and aesthetics V. S. Ramachandran and William Hirstein, The Science of Art, 1999
V. S. Ramachandran, Sharpening Up "The Science of Art", 2001
Semir Zeki, Art and the Brain, 1998
Denis Dutton, What is Art?, 2009
Pentti Routio, Beauty of a Product
April 5 Research project 1, early-stage discussions
April 7 Writing and research Marc Raibert, Good Writing
Aaron Hertzmann, Writing Research Papers
James Hollan, Research and Writing Advice
Richard Hamming, Striving for Greatness in All You Do
April 12 Paper analysis and discussion
[submit critique]
Georges Winkenbach and David Salesin, Computer-Generated Pen-and-Ink Illustration, SIGGRAPH 1994
April 14 Research project 1, mid-way discussions
April 19 Paper analysis and discussion
[submit critique]
Tim Weyrich et al., Digital Bas-Relief from 3D Scenes, SIGGRAPH 2007
April 21 The dynamics of research
April 26 Creativity
(guest lecture by Scott Klemmer)
Margaret Boden, The Creative Mind [excerpt]
Thomas Ward et al., Creative Cognition
April 28 Research project 1, final presentations
May 3 Paper analysis and discussion
[submit critique]
Doug DeCarlo and Anthony Santella, Stylization and Abstraction of Photographs, SIGGRAPH 2002
May 5 Research project 2, early-stage discussions
May 10 Paper analysis and discussion
[submit critique]
James Hays and Alexei Efros, Scene Completion Using Millions of Photographs, SIGGRAPH 2007
May 12 Writing research papers
May 17 Paper analysis and discussion
[submit critique]
Jean-Francois Lalonde et al., Photo Clip Art, SIGGRAPH 2007
May 19 Research project 2, mid-way discussions
May 24 Paper analysis and discussion
[submit critique]
Robert Carroll et al., Optimizing Content-Preserving Projections for Wide-Angle Images, SIGGRAPH 2009
May 26 Paper analysis and discussion
[submit critique]
Wilmot Li et al., Interactive Cutaway Illustrations of Complex 3D Models, SIGGRAPH 2007
May 31 Memorial Day, no class
June 2 Research project 2, final presentations

Research Projects

The instructors will guide student teams through two small research projects during the quarter. The directions for the projects are briefly summarized below. Within these directions, the teams will propose and develop specific ideas. More details on this process and on the research directions will be given in class.


This course cannot be audited. Registration is required in order to attend. The course can be taken for any number of units in the range 1-4.