We are quantifying the distribution of photoreceptors and ganglion cells in human retina with the goal of establishing a reliable anatomical database which may be compared to information about visual function. We required a representation of retinal cell distributions which facilitated collection, analysis, and display of morphometric data from the entire retina of a large number of eyes. We report computer methods to 1. (1) reconstruct the original retinal sphere from a three-piece whole mount preparation; 2. (2) sample the retina in a manner which allowed description of approximately radially symmetrical cell distributions and avoided both undersampling (which produces interpolation artifacts) and oversampling (which wastes time); 3. (3) interpolate between data points in order to produce plots of cell density along arbitrary meridians and maps of average cell density from several eyes; 4. (4) specify locations on the retinal surface using a spherical coordinate system with its primary axis through the fovea; and 5. (5) produce color-coded maps of cell distributions in a standard perimetric projection. © 1989.