Deep reinforcement learning-based patch selection for illuminant estimation

Bolei Xu, Jingxin Liu, Xianxu Hou, Bozhi Liu, Guoping Qiu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Previous deep learning based approaches to illuminant estimation either resized the raw image to lower resolution or randomly cropped image patches for the deep learning model. However, such practices would inevitably lead to information loss or the selection of noisy patches that would affect estimation accuracy. In this paper, we regard patch selection in neural network based illuminant estimation as a controlling problem of selecting image patches that could help remove noisy patches and improve estimation accuracy. To achieve this, we construct a selection network (SeNet) to learn a patch selection policy. Based on data statistics and the learning progression state of the deep illuminant estimation network (DeNet), the SeNet decides which training patches should be input to the DeNet, which in turn gives feedback to the SeNet for it to update its selection policy. To achieve such interactive and intelligent learning, we utilize a reinforcement learning approach termed policy gradient to optimize the SeNet. We show that the proposed learning strategy can enhance the illuminant estimation accuracy, speed up the convergence and improve the stability of the training process of DeNet. We evaluate our method on two public datasets and demonstrate our method outperforms state-of-the-art approaches.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103798
JournalImage and Vision Computing
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Color constancy
  • Patch selection
  • Reinforcement learning

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