Computer graphics This article is about graphics created using computers. For the article about the scientific study of computer graphics, see Computer graphics (computer science). For other uses, see Computer graphics (disambiguation). [pic] Computer graphics are graphics created using computers and, more generally, the representation and manipulation of image data by a computer. The development of computer graphics, or simply referred to as CG, has made computers easier to interact with, and better for understanding and interpreting many types of data.
Developments in computer graphics have had a profound impact on many types of media and have revolutionized the animation and video game industry. Overview The term computer graphics has been used in a broad sense to describe “almost everything on computers that is not text or sound”. Typically, the term computer graphics refers to several different things: • the representation and manipulation of image data by a computer • the various technologies used to create and manipulate images • the images so produced, and the sub-field of computer science which studies methods for digitally synthesizing and manipulating visual content, see study of computer graphics Today, computers and computer-generated images touch many aspects of our daily life. Computer imagery is found on television, in newspapers, for example in their weather reports, or for example in all kinds of medical investigation and surgical procedures. A well-constructed graph can present complex statistics in a form that is easier to understand and interpret.
In the media “such graphs are used to illustrate papers, reports, theses”, and other presentation material. History The advance in computer graphics was to come from one MIT student, Ivan Sutherland. In 1961 Sutherland created another computer drawing program called Sketchpad. Using a light pen, Sketchpad allowed one to draw simple shapes on the computer screen, save them and even recall them later. The light pen itself had a small photoelectric cell in its tip. This cell emitted an electronic pulse whenever it was placed in front of a computer screen and the screen’s electron gun fired directly at it.
By simply timing the electronic pulse with the current location of the electron gun, it was easy to pinpoint exactly where the pen was on the screen at any given moment. Once that was determined, the computer could then draw a cursor at that location. Image types 2D computer graphics [pic] 2D computer graphics are the computer-based generation of digital images—mostly from two-dimensional models, such as 2D geometric models, text, and digital images, and by techniques specific to them. The word may stand for the branch of computer science that comprises such techniques, or for the models themselves. D computer graphics are mainly used in applications that were originally developed upon traditional printing and drawing technologies, such as typography, cartography, technical drawing, advertising, etc.. In those applications, the two-dimensional image is not just a representation of a real-world object, but an independent artifact with added semantic value; two-dimensional models are therefore preferred, because they give more direct control of the image than 3D computer graphics, whose approach is more akin to photography than to typography.
Pixel art Pixel art is a form of digital art, created through the use of raster graphics software, where images are edited on the pixel level. Graphics in most old (or relatively limited) computer and video games, graphing calculator games, and many mobile phone games are mostly pixel art. Vector graphics [pic] Vector graphics formats are complementary to raster graphics, which is the representation of images as an array of pixels, as it is typically used for the representation of photographic images.
There are instances when working with vector tools and formats is best practice, and instances when working with raster tools and formats is best practice. There are times when both formats come together. An understanding of the advantages and limitations of each technology and the relationship between them is most likely to result in efficient and effective use of tools. 3D computer graphics 3D computer graphics in contrast to 2D computer graphics are graphics that use a three-dimensional representation of geometric data that is stored in the computer for the purposes of performing calculations and rendering 2D images.
Such images may be for later display or for real-time viewing. Despite these differences, 3D computer graphics rely on many of the same algorithms as 2D computer vector graphics in the wire frame model and 2D computer raster graphics in the final rendered display. In computer graphics software, the distinction between 2D and 3D is occasionally blurred; 2D applications may use 3D techniques to achieve effects such as lighting, and primarily 3D may use 2D rendering techniques. 3D computer graphics are often referred to as 3D models.
Apart from the rendered graphic, the model is contained within the graphical data file. However, there are differences. A 3D model is the mathematical representation of any three-dimensional object. A model is not technically a graphic until it is visually displayed. Due to 3D printing, 3D models are not confined to virtual space. A model can be displayed visually as a two-dimensional image through a process called 3D rendering, or used in non-graphical computer simulations and calculations. Computer animation [pic]
Computer animation is the art of creating moving images via the use of computers. It is a subfield of computer graphics and animation. Increasingly it is created by means of 3D computer graphics, though 2D computer graphics are still widely used for stylistic, low bandwidth, and faster real-time rendering needs. Sometimes the target of the animation is the computer itself, but sometimes the target is another medium, such as film. It is also referred to as CGI (Computer-generated imagery or computer-generated imaging), especially when used in films.
Virtual entities may contain and be controlled by assorted attributes, such as transform values (location, orientation, scale; see Cartesian coordinate system) stored in an object’s transformation matrix. Animation is the change of an attribute over time. Multiple methods of achieving animation exist; the rudimentary form is based on the creation and editing of keyframes, each storing a value at a given time, per attribute to be animated. The 2D/3D graphics software will interpolate between keyframes, creating an editable curve of a value mapped over time, resulting in animation.
Other methods of animation include procedural and expression-based techniques: the former consolidates related elements of animated entities into sets of attributes, useful for creating particle effects and crowd simulations; the latter allows an evaluated result returned from a user-defined logical expression, coupled with mathematics, to automate animation in a predictable way (convenient for controlling bone behavior beyond what a hierarchy offers in skeletal system set up). Concepts and Principles Image An image or picture is an artifact that resembles a physical object or person.
The term includes two-dimensional objects like photographs and sometimes includes three-dimensional representations. Images are captured by optical devices—such as cameras, mirrors, lenses, telescopes, microscopes, etc. and natural objects and phenomena, such as the human eye or water surfaces. A digital image is a representation of a two-dimensional image in binary format as a sequence of ones and zeros. Digital images include both vector images and raster images, but raster images are more commonly used. Pixel [pic] In the enlarged portion of the image individual pixels are rendered as squares and can be easily seen.
In digital imaging, a pixel (or picture element) is a single point in a raster image. Pixels are normally arranged in a regular 2-dimensional grid, and are often represented using dots or squares. Each pixel is a sample of an original image, where more samples typically provide a more accurate representation of the original. The intensity of each pixel is variable; in color systems, each pixel has typically three components such as red, green, and blue. Graphics Graphics are visual presentations on some surface, such as a wall, canvas, computer screen, paper, or stone to brand, inform, illustrate, or entertain.
Examples are photographs, drawings, line art, graphs, diagrams, typography, numbers, symbols, geometric designs, maps, engineering drawings, or other images. Graphics often combine text, illustration, and color. Graphic design may consist of the deliberate selection, creation, or arrangement of typography alone, as in a brochure, flier, poster, web site, or book without any other element. Clarity or effective communication may be the objective, association with other cultural elements may be sought, or merely, the creation of a distinctive style.
Rendering Rendering is the process of generating an image from a model, by means of computer programs. The model is a description of three dimensional objects in a strictly defined language or data structure. It would contain geometry, viewpoint, texture, lighting, and shading information. The image is a digital image or raster graphics image. The term may be by analogy with an “artist’s rendering” of a scene. ‘Rendering’ is also used to describe the process of calculating effects in a video editing file to produce final video output. 3D projection D projection is a method of mapping three dimensional points to a two dimensional plane. As most current methods for displaying graphical data are based on planar two dimensional media, the use of this type of projection is widespread, especially in computer graphics, engineering and drafting. Ray tracing Ray tracing is a technique for generating an image by tracing the path of light through pixels in an image plane. The technique is capable of producing a very high degree of photorealism; usually higher than that of typical scanline rendering methods.