Will Art Created By Artificial Intelligence Kill The Artist?

Most of my photography friends have been playing around with some form of AI Art, and the results are pretty remarkable. However, as amazing as this technology is, I’m sure I’m not the only one wondering if Artificial Intelligence will leave us all looking for new careers.

What exactly is artificial intelligent art? AI art is a brand new form of expression that allows users to string together a bunch of descriptive words, feed them into a machine learning program, and have the software export a one-of-a-kind, hyper-graphic image in seconds. The results aren’t always what you might have imagined in your head, and more times than not, the efforts of the Ai algorithm are beyond your wildest imagination. On one hand, AI-generated art is one of the greatest inventions of modern history, but on the other hand, it raises so many questions. Is AI art real art? Is the final image a creative product of the prompt writer? Who owns the rights to the final creation? Should we value it more than similar art that has taken much more time, effort, and skill?

All of these questions led me to reach out to my good friend and fellow photographer/entrepreneur Pye Jirsa. Many of you know Pye as the creative face of SLR Lounge, but he also runs a multi-seven-figure wedding business (perhaps one of the most successful wedding photography businesses in the world), and has recently started a new business venture, 12 Week Relationships, which dives into the world of relationship psychology. Needless to say, Pye is an incredibly talented creative, has a brilliant approach to business marketing, and also understands how new technologies can lead to greater success for those who become early adopters.

Since both Pye and I have explored the early beta offerings of many AI art generators, I thought it would be great to record our early thoughts, arguments, and perspectives on this crazy new form of art. Throughout this extended podcast, we find ourselves both intrigued and horrified at what this new technology will bring to the art world. Some of the topics we cover include:

  • What is art?
  • Is photography art?
  • What is AI Art and how can you use it?
  • Who is the author of AI-created art?
  • How will Ai Art be beneficial to society
  • How Ai Art might be detrimental to society
  • Do humans value art that is “real” or simply art that most strongly evokes an emotion?
  • Are some art mediums more valuable than others?
  • Where is AI Art going and can we stop it?
  • Is prompt writing an actual skill?
  • Who owns the copyright of AI-generated art?

These are just a few of the concepts we freely talk about in our 90-minute conversation, and I have to say, after bouncing some of my own ideas off Pye, I found myself left with even more questions than I had entering this conversation. Pye brings up some interesting points about how technology shifts in the past have left 99% of non-adopting artists to ruin from a commercial and business standpoint. He also questions how future generations will value and dedicate time to learning any specific art form when artificial intelligence can simply create something far superior and intricate than decades of human practice and mastery of the same medium. Of course, there will always be value in learning an art for fun, emotional sanctuary, and to explore your own creativity. Still, the question remains, “how will AI art change the way we use, consume, and appreciate art in the future?”

Here are a few of the images featured in the podcast created through Mid Journey

Perhaps once I have even more time to form my own thoughts about artificial art and where it is going, I will write up a full opinion piece on Fstoppers. At the moment, if I’m honest with myself, I’m not exactly sure how I truly feel about AI art generators like Mid Journey, Nightcafe, StarryAI, and Dall-E Mini. Half of me absolutely loves seeing what crazy and wacky ideas I can come up with and the resulting images AI generators can produce. The other half of me truly sees the writing on the wall and expects to both see and use AI art more and more in the future.

What are your thoughts on this new form of creativity? The flood gates aren’t truly opened yet as many of the programs listed above are still in their beta state and many still require invitations to use their services. Once AI art becomes even more malleable, realistic, and widespread, do you think it will undermine the careers of many creatives or will it always remain a novelty and not compromise the skills so many of us have worked our entire lives to perfect?

If you want to share your own AI art and participate in our latest Critique the Community, check out the CTC Ai Prompt Art Page and perhaps you can win a free tutorial from the Fstoppers Store!