Synergistic Instance-Level Subspace Alignment for Fine-Grained Sketch-Based Image Retrieval
IEEE Transactions on Image Processing
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We study the problem of fine-grained sketch-based image retrieval. By performing instance-level (rather than category-level) retrieval, it embodies a timely and practical application, particularly with the ubiquitous availability of touchscreens. Three factors contribute to the challenging nature of the problem: (i) free-hand sketches are inherently abstract and iconic, making visual comparisons with photos difficult, (ii) sketches and photos are in two different visual domains, i.e. black and white lines vs. color pixels, and (iii) fine-grained distinctions are especially challenging when executed across domain and abstraction-level. To address these challenges, we propose to bridge the image-sketch gap both at the high-level via parts and attributes, as well as at the low-level, via introducing a new domain alignment method. More specifically, (i) we contribute a dataset with 304 photos and 912 sketches, where each sketch and image is annotated with its semantic parts and associated part-level attributes. With the help of this dataset, we investigate (ii) how strongly-supervised deformable part-based models can be learned that subsequently enable automatic detection of part-level attributes, and provide pose-aligned sketch-image comparisons. To reduce the sketch-image gap when comparing low-level features, we also (iii) propose a novel method for instance-level domain-alignment, that exploits both subspace and instance-level cues to better align the domains. Finally (iv) these are combined in a matching framework integrating aligned low-level features, mid-level geometric structure and high-level semantic attributes. Extensive experiments conducted on our new dataset demonstrate effectiveness of the proposed method.
AuthorsLi, K; Pang, K; SONG, Y; Hospedales, T; Xiang, T; Zhang, H
- College Publications