Real-Time Hair Rendering

Markus Rapp
Research and Development department, Animation Institute of Filmakademie Baden-Wurttemberg, Ludwigsburg
Animation Institute of Filmakademie Baden-Wurttemberg, 2014


   title={Real-Time Hair Rendering},

   author={Rapp, Markus},



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An approach is represented to render hair in real-time by using a small number of guide strands to generate interpolated hairs on the graphics processing unit (GPU). Hair interpolation methods are based on a single guide strand or on multiple guide strands. Each hair strand is composed by segments, which can be further subdivided to render smooth hair curves. The appearance of the guide hairs as well as the size of the hair segments in screen space are used to calculate the amount of detail, which is needed to display smooth hair strands. The developed hair rendering system can handle guide strands with different segment counts. Included features are curly hair, thinning and random deviations. The open graphics library (OpenGL) tessellation rendering pipeline is utilized for hair generation. The hair rendering algorithm was integrated into the Frapper’s character rendering pipeline. Inside Frapper, configuration of the hair style can be adjusted. Development was done in cooperation with the Animation Institute of Filmakademie BadenWurttemberg within the research project "Stylized Animations for Research on Autism" (SARA).
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