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December 30, 2023

A Personal View on AI-Generated Images After a Tumultuous Year

The core of this year in the entertainment industry and its intertwined challenges with AI can be seen other than the legality of scraping or other legal issues; those topics have been explored and still will. I wanted to have a different angle and question AI's actual value.

I focus here on the artistic dimension, the heart of the website, services, and events I've been involved with for over ten years. After experimenting with various tools and solutions and browsing multiple services, I still believe that the benefits of using AI to generate images from scratch are still worth nothing.

I've observed a surge in websites and social media groups filled with AI-generated images, which often feels like a dive into a nonsensical world from an artistic standpoint. The trend of generating numerous images quickly and trying to market them cheaply only reinforces my belief that this reliance on AI for image creation is a trap. It benefits mainly the SaaS companies offering these services to hobbyists for a monthly subscription.

In a recent interview, the CEO of a trendy AI video generation company looking for funds says he prefers targeting the general public over professionals, which illustrates this shift. People who couldn't create an image from scratch now feel empowered yet gain little in return—no recognition, and if they attempt to sell their work, it's at rock-bottom prices, contributing to a market flooded with cheap AI images.

This isn't a new phenomenon. We see similar patterns in large malls where mass-produced, framed images from stock photo libraries are sold cheaply. It's the same with the deluge of photographs available for next to nothing.

The actual value of an image, illustration, or photograph lies in the idea, concept, composition, storytelling, and numerous other factors. Regardless of quality, an automated image or video cannot replicate the process involved in creation—the trials, errors, iterations, and decision-making that culminate in a finished artwork.

Those fixated on the result miss the essence of art, perceiving it merely as a consumable product. In contrast, carefully composed and conceived images reflect the creative process and the creator's personal choices, emotions, and experiences.

So, I would like to end with a positive note; in a landscape oversaturated with subpar or quickly produced images, it becomes ever more apparent that the actual value of artistry, born from meticulous craftsmanship and profound creativity, shines brighter than ever before.

Now is the moment for artists to dedicate effort to showcasing their abilities and the authenticity of their artistic journey to communicate positively.

As always, I remain committed to supporting this endeavor through my engagement on various websites, social media platforms, and events I oversee.