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Matthias Hullin, Elmar Eisemann, Hans-Peter Seidel, and Sungkil Lee.

ACM Trans. Graphics (Proc. SIGGRAPH'11), 30(4), 108:1–9, 2011.
Lens flare is caused by light passing through a photographic lens system in an unintended way. Often considered a degrading artifact, it has become a crucial component for realistic imagery and an artistic means that can even lead to an increased perceived brightness. So far, only costly offline processes allowed for convincing simulations of the complex light interactions. In this paper, we present a novel method to interactively compute physically-plausible flare renderings for photographic lenses. The underlying model covers many components that are important for realism, such as imperfections, chromatic and geometric lens aberrations, and antireflective lens coatings. Various acceleration strategies allow for a performance/quality tradeoff, making our technique applicable both in real-time applications and in high-quality production rendering. We further outline artistic extensions to our system.
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@ARTICLE{hullin11:flare, title={{Physically-Based Real-Time Lens Flare Rendering}}, author={Matthias Hullin and Elmar Eisemann and Hans-Peter Seidel and Sungkil Lee}, journal={{ACM Trans. Graphics (Proc. SIGGRAPH'11)}}, volume={30}, number={4}, pages={108:1--9}, year={2011} }

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