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We present a side-by-side analysis of two recent image space approaches for the visualization of vector fields on surfaces. The two methods, image space advection (ISA) and image-based flow visualization for curved surfaces (IBFVS) generate dense representations of time-dependent vector fields with high spatio-temporal correlation. While the 3D vector fields are associated with arbitrary surfaces represented by triangular meshes, the generation and advection of texture properties is confined to image space. Fast frame rates are achieved by exploiting frame-to-frame coherency and graphics hardware. In our comparison of ISA and IBFVS, we point out the strengths and weaknesses of each approach and give recommendations as to when and where they are best applied.