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Art in Transition . . . Again

A few months before I graduated college, I lamented to a colleague my absolute frustration at web design. He assured me that I needn’t worry about building websites. After all, “The Web Designer is about to be replaced!” He assured me that Adobe Dreamweaver, WordPress, and other such tools meant no one would need to hire a designer like me to design or maintain websites.

I then proceeded to design and maintain websites for clients for the next 12 years.

These platforms that were supposed to replace me became the very tools that enabled me to create beautiful websites that changed entire companies. I can’t help but look at the rise of Artificial Intelligence with a sense of déjà vu. I am apparently about to be replaced. Again. Or perhaps AI based tools will become another line item on my resumé.


Could they bring an end to certain roles in certain creative fields? Quite possibly. However, I do believe those fields will still be here tomorrow, however different they may look. There will still be artists and graphic designers, even if their jobs and careers look different.


This is perhaps a long way of saying that I do use and experiment with Artificial Intelligence tools as both an artist and a designer. I imagine my professional implementation of the technology is laughably small compared to whatever images (pun intended) are conjured up when I make this statement. AI has been invaluable in accurately mocking up promotional pieces, correcting segments of images, and building references for illustrations. It is not, however, a replacement or an excuse to not sit down and labor to completion a final piece.


I know for many artists, even a little of the technology is too much to be acceptable. For me, it is another tool that I want to be fluent in. How fluent I will need to be for my career remains to be seen. For now though, I wanted to be transparent, even if I only use it a little. 

AI-Generative Experiments - Cup of Coffee cropped.png

(Images on this page: Top, an animated gif highlighting the use of a "structure image" to create different renditions based on a prompt. This was inspired by the many stylistic takes of the old MTV logo. Center, a coffee cup I created for a Discord Server. This was made exclusively with prompts in both Firefly and Photoshop to better learn the tools. Bottom, a food board photo I light-corrected so it could be submitted to a company to become a puzzle. I used a combination of Photoshop filters, hand drawing, cloning, and ai generation tools to achieve an acceptable final image for the supplier's tools.)

© 2024 by Henning Peterson IV. All rights reserved. Images Restricted.

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