CR Blog

PhotoSketch

Digital, Photography

Posted by Neil Ayres, 6 October 2009, 13:39    Permalink    Comments (25)

Developed by five students from Tsinghua University in China and the National University of Singapore, PhotoSketch is a nifty online tool that allows you to create photomontages from simple stickmen-style sketches

The programme works with a simple tool palette on which you draw representations of an intended image, which are then tagged up by the user with keywords.

Using some neat technology explained in the demo video (see below), thousands of images are pulled in from Flickr, Google and Yahoo, from which 20-100 candidate images are produced. The most well-matched of these are processed (processing time is roughly 15 minutes for the items in the picture, plus a few minutes for the background), resulting in an almost seamless—lighting isn't adjusted—composite picture.

PhotoSketch: Internet Image Montage from tao chen on Vimeo.

Unfortunately the splurge of interest in the programme has brought the university's website to a stand-still (hopefully it will be up again soon), but the research paper detailing how PhotoSketch works is available to download.

The potential for producing quick storyboards without the need for any artistic talent is potentially boundless, although we’re not sure about the copyright implications of such a tool. The next question is, how long will it be before PhotoSketch’s talented creators turn their attention to video?

Originally posted on Mashable

25 Comments

Oh well there goes my job.

I joke, this seems like a great tool and would love to see some high quality examples of the final product. I wonder to what level of quality it cuts objects out.
Tom
2009-10-06 16:37:22


I actually think this PhotoSketch thing is great idea. Imagine the time you could save when putting together inspiration pieces for clients..."Here's what I'm envisioning, how do you feel about it?" It's basically a simple way of getting your ideas out quickly.

I'm not advocating it taking anyone's job, but PhotoSketch certainly has the ability to make those jobs slightly easier. As long as copyrights and trademarks are not being violated, it's definitely a useful tool. Especially for creatives who don't necessarily have the design chops.

Tessa Carroll
VBP OutSourcing
http://www.blogs.vbpoutsourcing.com
Tessa Carroll
2009-10-06 16:46:38


Sorry, am I the only one who thinks this is a hoax?!
James
2009-10-07 17:39:20


Has to be a hoax.

(And if its not can you please make a version that will do all the rotoscoping I'm currently having to do?)

Thanks
S
2009-10-08 13:43:56


sorry guys, aint a hoax, downloaded the binaries off a different site, uses openCV for edge recognition, works beautifully
red
2009-10-08 22:02:10


Love the theory of this, and man, it could be one helluva useful tool to sell in photo shoot concepts to sceptical clients. Unless the concepts look better than my photographs! Downside? Probably only available on a PC ;-\
Tim Photo
2009-10-09 17:07:08


very curious of the licensing issues. with even today's standards and processes, there are a lot of grey areas that get caught under the gavel. it seems that photosketch would blur the lines even more unless there were pools of imagery that were created as "free" or "one time fees" that were used to source from...? i dunno.....

also from the job angle, i would think that there would be another category possibly added to the photographer's tool belt right next to RM and RF...
Plunker
2009-10-09 17:52:33


And do people really think they can steal photographs from the web without any comeback?

Some pretty advanced software being developed right now to find any stolen photography posted on the net - sponsored by Getty

If you use other peoples pictures you will eventually pay for it - and about 7 x the amount if you had simply licenced the image originally
don goodman
2009-10-09 18:13:59


You're right Don, we got slapped by Getty for using a thumbnail image on a website - £1500!!!!
The software couldn't work on that basis, even if photos are up on Flikr or wherever it doesn't give others the right to use them.
Rob MInter
2009-10-09 21:25:49


Given the copyright issues I imagine this will be used mainly in China lol (assuming it is for real which I hope it is).
Mike Bradley
2009-10-10 04:08:19


So now you present an idea to a client and they say "yes! I'll have it exactly like that". Chains and straightjacket anyone?
Brendan MacNeill
2009-10-10 15:46:09


My photography career started in the days when computers were not used by designers or photographers. The visuals were often Magic Marker sketches on Layout paper, this gave far more creative freedom to both designer and photographer, without the constraints of having to match an existing photo.
I much prefer a hand drawn sketch to a photo vis for this very reason. If we continually make ‘new’ images out of the existing photography we will rarely, if ever, reach new creative ground.
Darrin Jenkins
2009-10-12 11:11:27


Yep things have gone full circle for us, rendering 3D models and translating back into hand drawn sketches. Suppose your average designer will begin the project by building composites or prototypes with the goal of creating the pretty picture. There’s nothing wrong with attractiveness, getting the look the client wants, but hey this is just another tool set. No substitute for content, so why not if it's for real, there's hopefully always a call for the pen...however, don't forget content.
David
2009-10-12 16:48:45


this is very cool. can we trial it on this page?
sorry i may just have link blindness like when you are looking for a marmite jar in the pantry.
Sandra
2009-10-13 00:59:02


@Sandra. No you can't trial it from here unfortunately. You can download the paper that shows how it works from the post above though.
Neil
2009-10-13 12:10:00


Hi, Sandra. No you can't trial it from here unfortunately. You can download the paper that shows how it works from the post above though.
Neil
2009-10-13 12:11:34


This is an incredible tool but I also wonder how the copyright will work on this. If it pulls images from Google, Flickr or Yahoo it means it will user other peoples photos and at some point I am pretty sure it will become a problem. On the other hand, if you use it to search through your own photos it is a very useful tool, but the chances of finding a suitable photo are also limited, but this depends on how many photos you have.
john
2010-01-17 16:24:21


this is very cool. can we trial it on this page?
oyunlar
2010-03-12 22:19:23


this is very cool. can we trial it on this page?
sorry i may just have link blindness like when you are looking for a marmite jar in the pantry.
evden eve nakliyat
2010-04-29 12:53:31


This looks like an amazing tool. It's a shame that many of the decent photographs are licensed so would be impossible to use without being fined, unless you have accounts with all the stock photo sites. I would really like to see a trial and see what the results would be like.
Oliver Bristol
2010-05-21 17:25:12


this is very cool. can we trial it on this page?
Medyumlar
2010-05-25 09:07:17


this is very cool. can we trial it on this page?
sorry i may just have link blindness like when you are looking for a marmite jar in the pantry.
dekorasyon
2010-05-25 23:42:28


Love the theory of this, and man, it could be one helluva useful tool to sell in photo shoot concepts to sceptical clients. Unless the concepts look better than my photographs! Downside? Probably only available on a PC ;-\
esenyurt
2010-07-22 10:09:20


this is very cool. can we trial it on this page?

sorry i may just have link blindness like when you are looking for a marmite jar in the pantry.
medyum
2011-02-09 11:58:00


This looks like an amazing tool. It's a shame that many of the decent photographs are licensed so would be impossible to use without being fined, unless you have accounts with all the stock photo sites. I would really like to see a trial and see what the results would be like.
astroloji
2011-03-24 18:45:35


Tell us what you think

What happens with my feedback?

We no longer require you to register and have a password in order to comment, simply fill in the form below. All comments are moderated so you may experience a short delay before your comment appears. CR encourages comments to be short and to the point. As a general rule, they should not run longer than the original post. Comments should show a courteous regard for the presence of other voices in the discussion. We reserve the right to edit or delete comments that do not adhere to this standard.

Get the RSS Feed
NULL