Proceedings: GI 2002

The Simulation of Paint Cracking and Peeling

Eric Paquette, Pierre Poulin, George Drettakis

Proceedings of Graphics Interface 2002: Calgary, Alberta, Canada, 27 - 29 May 2002, 59-68

DOI 10.20380/GI2002.08

  • BibTeX

     title = {The Simulation of Paint Cracking and Peeling},
     author = {Eric Paquette and Pierre Poulin and George Drettakis},
     booktitle = (Proceedings of the Graphics Interface 2002 Conference, May 27-29, 2002, Calgary, Alberta, Canada},
     url = {},
     year = {2002},
     month = {May},
     location = {Calgary, Alberta},
     pages = {59--68}


Weathering over long periods of time results in cracking and peeling of layers such as paint. To include these effects in computer graphics images it is necessary to simulate crack propagation, loss of adhesion, and the curling effect of paint peeling. We present a new approach which computes such a simulation on surfaces. Our simulation is inspired by the underlying physical properties. We use paint strength and tensile stress to determine where cracks appear on the surface. Cracks are then propagated through a 2D grid overlaid on the original surface, and we consider elasticity to compute the reduction of paint stress around the cracks. Simulation of the adhesion between the paint and the underlying material finally determines how the paint layer curls as it peels from the surface. The result of this simulation is rendered by generating explicit geometry to represent the peeling curls. We provide user control of the surface properties influencing the propagation of cracks. Results of our simulation and rendering method show that our approach produces convincing images of cracks and peels.