Color constancy by category correlation

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26 Citations (Scopus)


Finding color representations that are stable to illuminant changes is still an open problem in computer vision. Until now, most approaches have been based on physical constraints or statistical assumptions derived from the scene, whereas very little attention has been paid to the effects that selected illuminants have on the final color image representation. The novelty of this paper is to propose perceptual constraints that are computed on the corrected images. We define the category hypothesis, which weights the set of feasible illuminants according to their ability to map the corrected image onto specific colors. Here, we choose these colors as the universal color categories related to basic linguistic terms, which have been psychophysically measured. These color categories encode natural color statistics, and their relevance across different cultures is indicated by the fact that they have received a common color name. From this category hypothesis, we propose a fast implementation that allows the sampling of a large set of illuminants. Experiments prove that our method rivals current state-of-art performance without the need for training algorithmic parameters. Additionally, the method can be used as a framework to insert top-down information from other sources, thus opening further research directions in solving for color constancy. © 2011 IEEE.
Original languageEnglish
Article number6042334
Pages (from-to)1997-2007
JournalIEEE Transactions on Image Processing
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2012


  • Category correlation
  • color categories
  • color constancy
  • color naming


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