Compositing Digital Images

Thomas Porter, Tom Duff


Most computer graphics pictures have been computed all at once, so that the rendering program takes care of all computations relating to the overlap of objects. There are several applications, however, where elements must be rendered separately, relying on compositing techniques for the anti-aliased accumulation of the full image. This paper presents the case for four-channel pictures, demonstrating that a matte component can be computed similarly to the color channels. The paper discusses guidelines for the generation of elements and the arithmetic for their arbitrary compositing.

Available in the Proceedings of SIGGRAPH 1984.