Abstract. This paper presents an example-based method to interpret a 3D shape from a single image depicting that shape. A major difficulty in applying an example-based approach to shape interpretation is the combinatorial explosion of shape possibilities that occur at occluding contours. Our key technical contribution is a new shape patch representation and corresponding pairwise compatibility terms that allow for flexible matching of overlapping patches, avoiding the combinatorial explosion by allowing patches to explain only the parts of the image they best fit. We infer the best set of localized shape patches over a graph of keypoints at multiple scales to produce a discontinuous shape representation we term a shape collage. To reconstruct a smooth result, we fit a surface to the collage using the predicted confidence of each shape patch. We demonstrate the method on shapes depicted in line drawing, diffuse and glossy shading, and textured styles.