The Spring Equinox is on Monday March 20, 2023 at 5:24 PM EDT. However, winter will manage to bang on here in northern Michigan for another month at least, although the cold will be punctuated by an increasing number of sunny days when the wind is down and walking outside is pleasant or at least tolerable.
The last great paradigm shift was the advent of the Internet. That was when people like me walked in the back door of the establishment, took over, and did what we wanted, and no one stopped us. They were too busy guarding the front door.
The current paradigm shift is AI graphics and similar related imaging changes.
It seems that everything, all of this, compounds on one another with progress, elaboration, etc., and the result leaves little to desire or left for the imagination. The AI Graphics engines are tearing it up as we speak.
Even the not-so-human AI graphics have become creative, certainly doing a better job at creation than most of us on any given day. AI never sleeps.
And we have no real choice but to embrace this new graphics phenomenon, incorporate it, and learn to use it creatively. Does it take the fun out of life?
That’s hard to say, yet certainly it alters everything photographic more than just a little. And this suspiciously looks like we humans will soon be competing with AI creativity if we insist, and with whatever stamina we can work up. As mentioned, AI is tireless.
And this is not the only area of life that is morphing, just one of the most obvious. We are now creating ‘creativity’ outside of ourselves, and it’s up to us to know the difference because it will soon only be us that does that.
AI-generated imagery: Joe Biden eating a hotdog
And I see there is no choice but to join in with and manage the AI process or become but an eddy in the stream of time. And this graphic AI has already become weaponized. Soon we will have to look twice (or not even be able to tell) what is a real photo and what is one created by AI graphics. And then the fur will fly, which it already is, but to no avail. This is already a done deal.
And it’s not like we can turn back the clock or stop what has already happened in AI graphics. We can’t put the toothpaste back in the tube any more than we can take AI graphics to court and plead it out of being there. It’s already there and in Midjourney, which I use, it’s in its fifth revision and counting, while moving at exponential speeds.
I watched cell phones eviscerate professional photography, and long before that, back in the 1970s, I watched home computer graphics and word processors close down photographic and typesetting shops almost overnight. As they say, we can’t stop progress. Look what happened with music. The “Spotify” sites of the world have taken almost all of the money away from performing artists who try to eke out an existence.
I already have been corresponding with some well-known graphic artists who are weeping and gnashing their teeth over the advance of AI graphics into commissioned art. The best and brightest artists are good sports and already busy incorporating AI graphics into their own graphic works, but they don’t sound all that happy about it. They plan to surf it rather that fight it. And AI graphic engines, as mentioned, are tireless in their expansion, and it’s a tidal wave that is just beginning.
AI-generated imagery: Donald Trump eating a kale sandwhich
Certainly, we are at a point where progress is eating its own children and sucking the life out of more than a few creative artists. Are we powerless to stop it?
My guess is that we are powerless to stop this kind of progress, since it has already progressed and is a ‘fait accompli’. It’s beyond just being present. It’s being loved, championed, and already in revision.
I speak here about AI graphics and mentioned what happened to photography, typesetting, and music. There must be many other areas of interest out there about to (or already going through) radical change and a dramatic shift in direction through AI intelligence. Fortunes will be lost and found.
And just so you don’t think I am against all this; I am not. I love it and millions of people will produce creative graphics where before they were powerless to do so. It just is what it is. Let’s see what we can do with it.
Yet, as mentioned, AI graphics are about to be weaponized. See the enclosed Midjourney image, which is just showing what could be done in the very near future. All I prompted was:
“Donald Trump eats a kale sandwich.”
“Joe Biden eats a hotdog.”
I could revision this until they are relatively perfect, but I won’t bother. You get the idea.
We know Trump lives ‘Big Macs’, not kale. Can you imagine what will appear in a revision or two? You and I will only know the difference by our non-AI intelligence.
I have been doing Midjourney since it first dropped last summer and have completely stopped licensing images for use with my blog from stock graphic sites. I create all my graphics with Midjourney and plan to continue doing so.
Around me, I see all kinds of folks becoming artists and think they are creating art. Be that as it may, my interest in Midjourney AI is purely illustrative. I need illustrations to go with my daily blog to around 11,000 people, and got into because I could capture using Midjourney what I consider emotional content that goes with what I write.
DIGLLOYD: I differ* in only one key point: very soon (maybe already), few people will be able to distinguish what is real and what is fake (assuming skill goes into the AI effort), and then only part of the time. We have to rely upon other technology that makes cryptographically strong legal assertions.