Diffusion Maps for Edge-Aware Image Editing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Edge-aware operations, such as edge-preserving smoothing and edge-aware interpolation, require assessing the degree of similarity between pairs of pixels, typically defined as a simple monotonic function of the Euclidean distance between pixel values in some feature space. In this work we introduce the idea of replacing these Euclidean distances with diffusion distances, which better account for the global distribution of pixels in their feature space. These distances are approximated using diffusion maps: a set of the dominant eigenvectors of a large affinity matrix, which may be computed efficiently by sampling a small number of matrix columns (the Nystrom method). We demonstrate the benefits of using diffusion distances in a variety of image editing contexts, and explore the use of diffusion maps as a tool for facilitating the creation of complex selection masks. Finally, we present a new analysis that establishes a connection between the spatial interaction range between two pixels, and the number of samples necessary for accurate Nyström approximations.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalACM Transactions on Graphics
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2010


  • Nyström method
  • diffusion maps
  • edge-preserving smoothing
  • edgeaware interpolation
  • edit propagation


Dive into the research topics of 'Diffusion Maps for Edge-Aware Image Editing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this