Published December 9, 2022
[AI Art Weekly] Hey Mod, what’s your background and how did you get into AI art?
I am a CGI artist with a background in classical painting and sculpture. I have done everything: from 3D renderings for products, building VR environments, to digital sculpture for Marvel movies and Netflix shows. Currently I manage projects for an artist doing large-scale sculpture installations around the world. I got into AI art by dabbling with early google Colab documents and then got hooked when the local install of Stable Diffusion was released.
[AI Art Weekly] Do you have a specific project you’re currently working on? What is it?
I am currently working on my Genesis series which I describe as an AI fever dream envisioning the merge of humanity and machines. The idea is inspired from the movies and books I grew up with such as Akira, Ghost in the Shell, and Snowcrash. The fact that the images are created by AI perfectly plays into the aesthetic of the world building I’m exploring.
In addition, I have a few projects on the back burner that have gained recognition via Claire Silver’s second AI art contest. One piece won the 3rd place, and another was a finalist.
[AI Art Weekly] What does your workflow look like?
My current workflow consists in using Stable Diffusion 1.4, which focuses on custom model training. Experimentation and iteration are obvious keys here. I sometimes end up training models on 5-7 different image sets and then experiment with checkpoint, merging the results to other trained models.
Usually, I have a very basic prompt, and use it during the training phase so that I can see how the model is changing from version to version. Then I use the x/y plot in Automatic1111’s webui to iterate and attempt to find outputs that fit the aesthetic I am going for. Once I find a model and prompt that is doing what I want (or something unexpected that I like) I then iterate further using the x/y prompts with smaller more specific changes.
[AI Art Weekly] What is your favourite prompt when creating art?
Cyberpunk, haha! This was a prompt I used for my Genesis series.
I’ve found prompting on trained models to be different than prompting on the vanilla model. Image training in Dreambooth seems to evolve the entire model’s response to prompts and, as a result, my prompts are very simple. For instance — “
portrait of a girl as cyberpunk“ — and then I let the training take the reins. Sometimes, the prompts are weird broken sentences that get interesting results.
[AI Art Weekly] How do you imagine AI will be impacting society in the near future?
Artists throughout history have employed others to create parts of or their entire artwork for them. During the Renaissance apprentices would paint parts of the masters’ paintings in order to assist in commissions. In more recent decades, some of the biggest artists in the world don’t even touch a brush or define a curve of a sculpture with their own hands. Instead, some have become more akin to art directors having tens to hundreds of other people create the work for them. In some ways, this can be seen as an advanced form of prompting! AI art, I think, can be seen as a form of this — with the peculiarity that this particular form is accessible to the general population. AI plays the role of the hired hand executing the art itself. The impact will be widespread, especially because the technology continues to advance. It is easy to foresee AI art changing a few art fields in the near future (concept art, for instance) and changing the way people generally make art and employ references.
[AI Art Weekly] Who is your favourite artist?
This past year I’ve been fascinated with the paintings of Sainer Etam, especially after seeing his show in Rouen, France over the summer. There are so many interesting aspects to his work, from composition and color, to the blending of abstract elements into representational, that are so well executed and inspiring.
[AI Art Weekly] Anything else you would like to share?
Needless to say, I’m looking forward to the future of AI art and technology. It is an exciting time to be exploring and creating with all these tools and there are a lot of people doing amazing things, and more to come I’m sure.