The objective of this project was to facilitate improved understanding of geological evolution by developing methods for rapid and intuitive digital sketching.


The Geoillustrator project was funded by Statoil and the Norwegian Research Council. Project partners were CMR, Statoil and Department of Informatics and Department of Earth Science at the University of Bergen. We researched new methods for automated geoscientific illustrations. Research topics included:

  • Methods for sketch-based modelling and visualization of geological deposition
  • Methods for uncertainty sketching
  • Methods for sketching og faults and compaction
  • Smart cutouts- design principles for cut-away views
  • Rapid surface extraction from 3D seismic cubes
  • Illustrative visualization of heterogeneous models

The results included several software prototypes and a range of publications. Four PhDs were funded in this project.

Natali, Mattia, Parulek, Julius, Patel, Daniel. Rapid Modelling of Interactive Geological Illustrations with Faults and Compaction. Proceedings of Spring Conference on Computer Graphics (SCCG), 2014



Mattia Natali PhD defence, Slides   Disputas
Rapid Modelling of Interactive Geological Illustrations with Faults and Compaction. Mattia Natali, Julius Parulek, Daniel Patel. Spring conference on Computer Graphics May 2014, Smolenice castle, Slovakia
Sketch-based modelling and visualization of geological deposition. Mattia Natali, Tore Grane Klausen, Daniel Patel, Computers & Geosciences, vol. 67, pp 40-48, 2014
Sedimentology, reservoir geometry and paleogeography of the Mid- to Late Triassic Snadd Formation of the Barents Sea,Tore Klausen, PhD Thesis 3 December 2013
Instant Convolution Shadows for Volumetric Detail Mapping, Daniel Patel, Veronika Šoltészová, Jan Martin Nordbotten, Stefan Bruckner, ACM Transactions on Graphics, vol. 32, no. 5, pp. 154:1–154:18, 2013.
Sketch-based Storytelling for Cognitive Problem Solving, Endre M. Lidal, PHD thesis, June 2013
Geological storytelling, Endre M. Lidal,  Mattia Natali, Daniel Patel, Helwig Hauser, Ivan Viola, Computers & Graphics 37(2013)445–459 (Elsevier)
Rapid Sketch-based 3D Modeling of Geology, E. M. Lidal, D. Patel, M. Bendiksen, T. Langeland, and I. Viola, Workshop on Visualisation in Environmental Sciences (EnvirVis) (2013) (The Eurographics Association 2013.)
Modeling Terrains and Subsurface Geology, M. Natali, E.M. Lidal, J. Parulek, I. Viola, D. Patel, EUROGRAPHICS 2013/ M. Sbert, L. Szirmay-Kalos, The Eurographics Association 2013
Rapid Visualization of Geological Concepts, Mattia Natali, Ivan Viola, Daniel Patel, Conference on Graphics, Patterns and Images, 25 (SIBGRAPI), 2012
Outcrop and subsurface characterization of shelf-margin clinoform systems, Sten Andreas-Grundvåg PhD Thesis. June 22, 2012
Fluvial Geometries and Reservoir Characteristics of a Triassic Coastal Plain System in the Norwegian Barents Sea — 3-D Seismic Imaging of the Ladinian to Early Norian Snadd Formation, T. Klausen, W Helland-Hansen, I. Laursen, R. Gawthorpe. AAPG Search and Discovery Article. Annual Convention and Exhibition, April 22-25, 2012, Long Beach, California
Background   Synthesis   Dataset
Illustrative Membrane Clipping, Åsmund Birkeland, Stefan Bruckner, Andrea Brambilla, Ivan Viola, Computer Graphics Forum, 31(3):905-914, June 2012
Geological Storytelling – Graphically Exploring and Communicating Geological Sketches, Endre Lidal, Helwig Hauser, and Ivan Viola, EUROGRAPHICS Symposium on Sketch-Based Interfaces and Modeling (2012), 4–6 June
Sketch Modeling of Seismic Horizons from Uncertainty, Ronan Amorim, Emilio Vital Brazil, Daniel Patel and Mario Costa Sousa, EUROGRAPHICS Symposium on Sketch-Based Interfaces and Modeling (2012), 4–6 June
Design Principles for Cutaway Visualization of Geological Models, Endre M. Lidal (UoB), Helwig Hauser (UoB), Ivan Viola (UoB/CMR), 28th Spring conference on Computer Graphics, 2-4 May, in cooperation with ACM & EUROGRAPHICS
Chromatic Shadows for Improved Perception, Veronika Soltészová, Daniel Patel, Ivan Viola, Non-Photorealistic Animation and Rendering, NPAR 2011, Vancouver, Canada. August 5-7
Enhancing Visualization with Real-Time Frequency-based Transfer Functions, Erald Vuçini, Daniel Patel, Meister Eduard Gröller, In Proceedings of IS&T/SPIE Conference on Visualization and Data Analysis, pages 78680L-1-78680L-12. January 2011.
Seismic Volume Visualization for Horizon Extraction, Daniel Patel, Stefan Bruckner, Ivan Viola, Meister Eduard Gröller, In Proceedings of the IEEE Pacific Visualization Symposium. March 2010


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    The Research Council of Norway, Statoil ASA

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