Directing gaze in narrative art Conference Paper uri icon


  • Narrative art tells a story, either as a moment in an ongoing story or as a sequence of events unfolding over time. In many works of art separate panels within the same frame are used to depict the sequence of events. Often, there is no clear delineation between these panels, or any indication of the optimal viewing order. To improve visual literacy we propose using Subtle Gaze Direction (SGD) to direct the viewers gaze across an image in a manner which reveals the story. SGD uses small image space modulations in the luminance channel to guide a viewer's gaze about an image without disrupting their normal visual experience. Using a simple ordering task we compared performance using no modulation and using subtle modulation with the correct order of narrative episodes as intended by the artist. Results from experiments show improved performance when SGD is employed. This experiment establishes the potential of the method as an aid to visual navigation in images where the viewing order is unclear. 2012 ACM.

name of conference

  • Proceedings of the ACM Symposium on Applied Perception

published proceedings

  • Proceedings of the ACM Symposium on Applied Perception

author list (cited authors)

  • McNamara, A., Booth, T., Sridharan, S., Caffey, S., Grimm, C., & Bailey, R.

citation count

  • 17

complete list of authors

  • McNamara, Ann||Booth, Thomas||Sridharan, Srinivas||Caffey, Stephen||Grimm, Cindy||Bailey, Reynold

publication date

  • January 2012