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Relightable and Animatable Neural Avatar from Sparse-View Video

Zhen Xu · Sida Peng · Chen Geng · Linzhan Mou · Zihan Yan · Jiaming Sun · Hujun Bao · Xiaowei Zhou

Arch 4A-E Poster #79
award Highlight
[ ] [ Project Page ]
Wed 19 Jun 10:30 a.m. PDT — noon PDT


This paper tackles the problem of creating relightable and animatable neural avatars from sparse-view (or monocular) videos of dynamic humans under unknown illumination. Previous neural human reconstruction methods produce animatable avatars from sparse views using deformed Signed Distance Fields (SDF) but are non-relightable. While differentiable inverse rendering methods have succeeded in the material recovery of static objects, it is not straightforward to extend them to dynamic humans since it is computationally intensive to compute pixel-surface intersection and light visibility on deformed SDFs for relighting. To solve this challenge, we propose a Hierarchical Distance Query (HDQ) algorithm to approximate the world space SDF under arbitrary human poses. Specifically, we estimate coarse SDF based on a parametric human model and compute fine SDF by exploiting the invariance of SDF w.r.t. local deformation. Based on HDQ, we leverage sphere tracing to efficiently estimate the surface intersection and light visibility. This allows us to develop the first system to recover relightable and animatable neural avatars from sparse or monocular inputs. Experiments show that our approach produces superior results compared to state-of-the-art methods. Our project page is available at

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