FiberMesh: Designing Freeform Surfaces with
3D Curves

Andrew Nealen, Takeo Igarashi, Olga Sorkine-Hornung, Marc Alexa


Modeling results using FiberMesh. The user interactively defines the control curves, combining sketching and direct manipulation, and the system continuously presents fair interpolative surfaces defined by these curves (blue = smooth curve, red = sharp curve).


This paper presents a system for designing freeform surfaces with a collection of 3D curves. The user first creates a rough 3D model by using a sketching interface. Unlike previous sketching systems, the user-drawn strokes stay on the model surface and serve as handles for controlling the geometry. The user can add, remove, and deform these control curves easily, as if working with a 2D line drawing. The curves can have arbitrary topology; they need not be connected to each other. For a given set of curves, the system automatically constructs a smooth surface embedding by applying functional optimization. Our system provides real-time algorithms for both control curve deformation and the subsequent surface optimization. We show that one can create sophisticated models using this system, which have not yet been seen in previous sketching or functional optimization systems.


accompanying video (with narration)

sample results

Our results: Torso and Arm

Torso and Arm

Some fishy results...


Results obtained from first-time novice users. Model creation took 10, 10 and 20 minutes, respectively.

First-time users' results

Creations from a professional 2D animation artist. Modeling took 10, 20 and 20 minutes, respectively.

Artist results


This work was supported in part by grants from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). We would like to thank Alexander Bobenko, Klaus Hildebrandt, Leif Kobbelt, Boris Springborn and Max Wardetzky for helpful discussions, Kenshi Takayama, Yuki Mori and UrumaDelvi for model creation, and the anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments and suggestions.