geoTangle: Interactive Design of Geodesic Tangle Patterns on Surfaces

G. Nazzaro, E. Puppo, F. Pellacini
ACM Transactions on Graphics, 2022


Tangles are complex patterns, which are often used to decorate the surface of real-world artisanal objects. They consist of arrangements of simple shapes organized into nested hierarchies, obtained by recursively splitting regions to add progressively finer details. In this paper, we show that 3D digital shapes can be decorated with tangles, by working interactively in the intrinsic metric of the surface. Our tangles are generated by the recursive application of only four operators, which are derived from tracing the isolines or the integral curves of geodesics fields generated from selected seeds on the surface. Based on this formulation, we present an interactive application that lets designers model complex recursive patterns directly on the object surface, without relying on parametrization. We reach interactive speed on meshes of a few million triangles, by relying on an efficient approximate graph-based geodesic solver.