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Medical Imaging: Imaging and reproduction of skin

Problem statement

Capture and reproduction of human skin is becoming increasingly important in many medical fields, including detection of skin pathology (e.g. melanoma) and the development of prostheses. Methods of capture and reproduction vary widely, making it difficult to share skin colour data. There is a need for a publicly available database of calibrated skin colour measurements and/or images, and a consensus on how to estimate skin reflectance from camera RGB.


Those involved in skin measurement, imaging and reproduction collaborate to define requirements and develop best practices.

Activities envisaged include working with MIWG members and with other groups to:

  • Understand the challenges in measurement and reproduction of skin
  • Clarify the requirements of different users of skin reflectance data
  • Review best practices in skin measurement and reproduction
  • Agree a method of estimating skin reflectance from RGB image data
  • Develop a publicly accessible database of skin images and skin reflectance data

Project coordinator: Kaida Xiao

Medical Imaging Working Group main page.


See the Medical Imaging Working Group main page for details of upcoming meetings.

Links to other related activities

Color Imaging Conference Workshop on Multi-Disciplinary Challenges in the Measurement and Reproduction of Skin Colors (W2)

CIE Technical Committee 1-92 Skin Colour Database


Spectral Measurement of Human Skin Colour

Achieving a realistic colour appearance for 3-D printed skin

Skin Colour Reproduction on LCDs

Colourlab Workshop #1/2015 - Skin imaging

CIC Workshop on Multi-Disciplinary Challenges in the Measurement and Reproduction of Skin Colors October 23 2015
   Presentations from the workshop

Database of colorimetric measurements of human skin, developed by Dr Kaida Xiao.
Characterising the variations in ethnic skin colours: a new calibrated data base for human skin by K. Xiao, J. M. Yates, F. Zardawi, S. Sueeprasan, N. Liao, L. Gill, C. Li and S. Wuerger, J. Skin Research and Technology 2016; 0: 1-9
Database of estimated skin spectral reflectances with RGB camera data
Database of skin spectral reflectance measurements
Improved method for skin reflectance reconstruction from camera images by K. Xiao, Y. Zhu, D. Connah, J. Yates and S. Wuerger, Optics Express 24 13 2016