The Visual Computer

, Volume 33, Issue 6–8, pp 913–923 | Cite as

Marbling-based creative modelling

  • Shufang Lu
  • Yue Huang
  • Xiaogang JinEmail author
  • Aubrey Jaffer
  • Craig S. Kaplan
  • Xiaoyang Mao
Original Article


Most mathematical marbling simulations generate patterns for texture mapping and surface decoration. We explore the application of three-dimensional deformations inspired by mathematical marbling as a suite of tools to enable creative shape design. Our tools are expressed as analytical functions of space and are volume-preserving vector fields, meaning that the modelling process preserves volumes and avoids self-intersections. Complicated deformations are easily combined to create complex objects from simple ones. To achieve smooth and high-quality shapes, we also present a mesh refinement and simplification algorithm adapted to our deformations. We show a number of examples of shapes created with our technique in order to demonstrate its power and expressiveness.


Computational geometry Shape modelling Volume-preserving vector fields Marbling art 



Shufang Lu was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 61402410) and the China Scholarship Council. Xiaogang Jin was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 61472351).

Supplementary material

Supplementary material 1 (avi 23583 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shufang Lu
    • 1
  • Yue Huang
    • 2
  • Xiaogang Jin
    • 2
    Email author
  • Aubrey Jaffer
    • 3
  • Craig S. Kaplan
    • 4
  • Xiaoyang Mao
    • 5
  1. 1.Zhejiang University of TechnologyHangzhouChina
  2. 2.Zhejiang UniversityHangzhouChina
  3. 3.DigilantBostonUS
  4. 4.University of WaterlooWaterlooCanada
  5. 5.University of YamanashiKofuJapan

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