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Linear and multi-linear models of object shape/appearance (PCA, 3 DMM, AAM/ASM, multilinear tensors) have been very popular in computer vision. In this paper, we analyze the validity of these models from the fundamental physical laws of object motion and image formation. We rigorously prove that the image appearance space can be closely approximated to be locally multilinear, with the illumination subspace being bilinearly combined with the direct sum of the motion, deformation and texture subspaces. This result allows us to understand theoretically many of the successes and limitations of the linear and multi-linear approaches existing in the computer vision literature, and also identifies some of the conditions under which they are valid. It provides an analytical representation of the image space in terms of different physical factors that affect the image formation process. Experimental analysis of the accuracy of the theoretical models is performed as well as tracking on real data using the analytically derived basis functions of this space.
Date of Conference: 23-28 June 2008