On a recent visit to an art exhibition, I glanced toward the far end of the gallery and saw a vast golden seascape that drew me to the end of the hall.
It must have measured 12 meters by 3 meters. As I drew closer the intimate detail was revealed. It was made of fish hooks. 500,000 of them.
What looked like a painting from a distance was a creative use of an ordinary object that had produced an extraordinary piece of art.
The production of this piece took around 6 months of work. It was created with the help of 30 assistants, divided into different sessions of work.
An idea meets a production.
The artist, Yoan Capote.
What is creativity?
Cambridge dictionary says that creativity is “The ability to produce or use original and unusual ideas.”
So the two elements that need to be considered are “idea” and “produce”.
An idea is just a thought and invisible.
It doesn’t make a difference.
It is just the start.
But a production is the invisible made visible.
Creativity that changes the world needs both.
Dreams are great.
But nothing happens until you act.
What are the challenges to being creative in a world of AI and ChatGPT?
There is a term that has arisen out of machine learning which is one of the core building blocks for AI, the “stochastic parrot”.
What is a stochastic parrot?
The stochastic parrot is a large language model that is good at generating convincing language but does not actually understand the meaning. To train a stochastic parrot, an extensive universe of text data is fed into the model. The model then learns the statistical patterns and relationships within the data, enabling it to generate text that is similar to the examples it was trained on”
In essence, the AI output model itself is trapped within the human examples and models that train and constrain it.
Our creativity challenge as humans
Our biggest challenge to creating an original idea and then producing something unique lies in our history and past.
As emerging humans, we are all conditioned by our parents, culture, and religion. Society and our peers demand that we fit in.
We aren’t looking for originality or meaning, we are just conforming.
“If we truly examine ourselves, the majority of the thoughts that arise in our heads are in other people’s voices. The voices of our parents and our teachers. The books we read, the TV we watch – the cumulative mental product of ten thousand years of a post-nomadic, calorie-dense culture. Our thoughts are built on top of a very deep and sticky cultural substrate” – Goutham Kurra, What AI Can Teach us about being Human
I often feel that there is something greater within me to produce my best potential but breaking free from the calcified training and conditioning of our lived-in environment feels like I am trying to break free of the mud and the life “mold” that holds me in place and traps me in fixed thinking.
My cognitive biases are my own subjective reality, and they are hard to break free from.
Are we becoming super conscious?
The web is connecting individual human consciousness and intelligence globally at scale.
We could use the term superconsciousness to describe what’s happened since the internet started connecting humans via computers and smartphones.
The world’s intelligence and creativity are now amplified by technology.
What is AI’s role in creativity?
AI wouldn’t exist if we didn’t have the World Wide Web and the machines that host all the data. Data is the new oil.
But, let’s first start with where we are now.
We are now in the age of generative AI and according to IBM, “Generative AI refers to deep-learning models that can generate (produce) high-quality text, images, and other content based on the data they were trained on.”
Where did that content and data come from?
How does AI enhance, amplify, and accelerate our creativity?
Human creativity comes from the imagination, which emerges from the past experiences that we have seen, tasted, smelt, touched, and learned. What makes us human and creative is making connections and new combinations that are unique.
AI can take the learnings and information from a global consciousness and create new combinations that are done in seconds from global information technology super-consciousness reflected in billions of computers and trillions of data points that a human has maybe never imagined.
- It is imagination at scale and light speed
- It is human creativity but enhanced by the machine
The creativity of the individual has now been expanded by the creativity of the totality of the human race.
Jung’s collective unconscious is public and conscious. Used well this is where AI becomes our servant for the common good. Beauty, connections, and intelligence at a global scale.
How do we nurture creativity?
Humans are innately creative but the inspiration is often buried by parents, culture, and society by another innate human trait. The need to conform.
How do we let the imagination free? To come up with unique ideas and combinations?
There is no simple answer and it often comes out of chaos. Connecting dots of disparate thinking.
And be willing to be open to fun, and connection of different information and ideas.
And be willing to fail.
“Creativity is intelligence having fun.” – Albert Einstein
“Creativity is just connecting things.” – Steve Jobs
“To have a great idea, have a lot of them.” – Thomas A. Edison
Thomas Edison failed 2,774 times trying to invent the lightbulb.
3 Examples of AI-enhanced and amplified human creativity
There are almost no corners of life, art, or business that will not be touched by AI.
Art is something that stimulates an individual’s thoughts, emotions, beliefs, or ideas through the senses. This includes music, sculpture, paintings, and much more.
Some art (like photography), was originally not seen as an art form and today the boundaries of what constitutes art are constantly challenged.
The oldest known cave painting is a red hand stencil in Maltravieso cave, Cáceres, Spain. It has been dated using the uranium-thorium method to be older than 64,000 years and was made by a Neanderthal.
So what is AI art?
AI art is any form of digital art created by an AI platform, app, algorithm, and techniques.
One of the fastest-growing areas is generative AI art. These include Deep Dream, RunwayML, and Neuralstyler.
Artists that are blending their own inspiration with AI
But for something different Scott Eaton is pushing the boundaries of AI art.
Scott is a multidisciplinary artist and designer with digital sculpture and anatomy expertise. Eaton’s work often involves creating hyper-realistic sculptures and figures, combining traditional artistic techniques with digital tools.
This is one of his creations from the “Artist+AI: Figures & Faces” series that is able to be seen in one of his presentations on YouTube.
He collaborated with AI algorithms to explore the possibilities of creating lifelike digital portraits. By training AI models on vast datasets of facial features, he generated new variations and interpretations of human faces.
Eaton’s works have been exhibited internationally in galleries and art events.
AI art tools for the masses
There are many AI art and image-generation tools that are designed to democratize art creation for the masses. One of these is DeepDreamGenerator.com.
Example of one of their AI art creations:
To see more examples, we have put together an Ultimate list of AI Art and Image generation tools for you to check out.
2. Fashion design
Fashion designers are leaning into AI for inspiration. Fashion design flows across clothes and accessories. From shoes to accessories including handbags and suitcases.
One of the rising startups providing a tool to create fashion design is “The New Black”
They say “You just need to fill in the fields with your design ideas and we will create different visuals accordingly. For example, you can request a black and white dress for a ceremony. We will create different variations. From there, you can adapt your description to come closer to your idea. You can also look at other AI fashion designs from our community and copy settings. You can quickly create unique variations from all the designs in our gallery”.
Here are some of their designs using their Fashion Design AI tool.
AI fashion design tool
Their aim appears to be to democratize fashion design by mixing fashion design with technology. The New Black’s vision is also to create a community gallery of AI fashion designs, so that all designers can be inspired together and be more creative through AI.
Below is their pricing structure for creating fashion designs:
One recent example of pushing boundaries with AI is re-combinations for furniture design. What if you put in a prompt for designing a sofa that looks like a Porsche, a Lamborghini Diablo or even a McDonalds Logo?
These are the designs by students from RMIT using AI tools such as the MidJourney AI platform.
So does AI amplify human creativity and innovation?
The reality is that when you use ChatGPT or any AI platform with a friendly user interface to create a piece of art that could be new and never been seen before there are two things that stand out.
- The speed and scale of the response – That’s humanity accelerated and amplified
- The surprising new combinations and connections between disparate ideas that amaze – That’s hyper and unique connections
Is it the AI or is it the human?
The data and technology are created by humans.
AI is our servant to be used to make humans superhuman.
The future’s so bright we need to wear shades.
But we need to make sure we don’t become its slave.
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