As an artist, I think it is a net negative for us. Disregarding the copyright issue, I think it’s also consolidating power into large corporations, going to kill learning fundamental skills (rip next generation of artists), and turn the profession into a low skill minimum wage job. Artists that spent years learning and perfecting their skills will be worth nothing and I think it’s a pretty depressing future for us. Anways thoughts?
Talk about whatever, respecting the rules established by Lemmygrad. Failing to comply with the rules will grant you a few warnings, insisting on breaking them will grant you a beautiful shiny banwall.
A community for comrades to chat and talk about whatever doesn’t fit other communities
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the people complaining about AI art are not complaining about AI - they are complaining that AI is taking away their livelihoods. But the problem here is capitalism. Under socialism, and eventually the final stage, communism, everyone’s lives will be ultimately provided for, giving them the freedom to explore art as a hobby, for fun, and for whatever drives them.
Automation is always good under socialism as it only increases human capability, and can be managed by the workers. Just as automation in many cases replaced many other forms of production that I’m sure people cared about, there should be no difference or special status given to art.
I am frustrated by the notion that art is different from any other form of human experience. I think this is the least materialist way of understanding art possible. In fact, I see a few users parroting a very idealist and individualist conception of art - acting as though it is about seeking a so-called “creativity”, which in my opinion feels like a petite bourgeois mindset that relies on seeing art as above the material and functional, and independent of the mode of production. Their attempts to differentiate themselves from other proletarians, for whom under socialism automation would be a massive benefit, is personally, asinine. ESPECIALLY BECAUSE UNDER SOCIALISM, NOONE WILL STOP ARTISTS FROM DRAWING FOR FUN - ONLY THAT THEY MAY NOT BE ABLE TO DRAW FOR THEIR WORK. If these artists are truly not creating because of their desire for money but because of their love for art, they should be able to tolerate another job. Especially because, for example, in the USSR, workers were already working extremely short hours relative to western countries of the same development level, and socialism was reducing them very quickly - they would have plenty of free time for art.
Finally, the “stealing art” argument, which is equally infuriating to me. In my personal opinion, as someone who regards science as the only truth, the process through which human beings, as meat sacks full of chemicals, produce art from references throughout their lives, should be considered not particularly different from the process through which AI(especially as it becomes more sophisticated) creates art. As if human brains aren’t also following some mathematical/physical process(which, again, if you believe in science, and not some metaphysical “soul”, should absolutely be true!) to remix the things they have seen in their lives.
Also, intellectual property is bullshit. if you believe in intellectual property as a principle, you are just straight up not a communist.
I do personally think China’s take - that all automated art ought to be watermarked, is good, but purely for the purpose of combatting disinformation. It should not be prominently visible. In fact, I think AI art allowing non-artists to enjoy the feeling of getting to create unique and vaguely coherent images is cool, good, valid, and just a natural consequence of technological progress.
TL;DR - under socialism, automation is good. proletarian artists are oppressed by capitalism, not automation(just like all other proletarians)
My takes might not all be good, and I don’t mean to be hostile. I’m sure this will at least be a controversial post, if not one that gets me mass downvoted, but I don’t think I’m the only one with this opinion.
Whether the process by which a human being produces art, and the process by which a deep learning model produces art, are isomorphic, is orthogonal to whether or not the process itself constitutes theft. Nobody likes this guy:
The boundaries between imitation, and remix, and so-called “original” works, are all fuzzy, but they do exist. And they will continue to exist under any politico-economic system.
Authorship exists independently of politico-economic systems, and each such system will need to determine the extent to which it values and respects it. Under capitalism, the point of so-called intellectual property, like all commodities, is profit. Not public benefit. Not expression. Not for the ego boost. Not for-the-fuck-of-it. Just profit. As much of it and for as long as possible. Communism will need its own answer. And ideally, it will be an answer that balances the material needs of the people who make it, the material costs of making it, and the broader public good.
You have definitely given me a lot to think about and your replies want to make me learn more. Thanks for offering some solid discussion here (I know I keep replying but honestly I don’t know how to message people individually).
Some people want to draw for work. What would be the point of just drawing “for fun” if your work is just kept to yourself and piled under a bunch of soulless AI generated images?
If everything gets automated, and nobody does anything since art can just be reduced to prompting, then what are people going to do? Sit in a room and rot? I’ve asked this question in the thread before but I didn’t get an answer.
The topic at hand here is art. It’s how I connect with the world. It is how I met my wife. It’s what motivates me to move forward when the world completely sucks.
I feel like it’s really unrealistic to assume that AI will create some kind of utopia that is free of work. What will people do? Tell me what a typical day will look like if literally everything, including art, is automated? If art is not going to be valued as an effective form of communication or experiencing the world, and that it is useless to learn and gain skills in because AI can do it better, then what is the point?
I believe that some arguments and statements are not worth listening to and that is so many of the comments in this thread. Unless you are an artist yourself you can’t speak on behalf of them.
It is sad that something actually makes life meaningful is being taken out of human hands. It’s akin to taking away hope and faith in itself.
I don’t feel motivated to live in a world where I would never get the opportunity to work toward something I cared about, and to be demoralized every step of the way because a computer can replace me at any second. On top of that, being reminded of it at every second of the way.
Even on top of that, from a purely scientific perspective, humans’ brains are the way they are because we have the need to be valued and feel useful and fulfilled. There is a reason why people work and always have worked toward something. There has never been a society that has not had some form of work in human history. Even during my time in West Africa as a Peace Corps volunteer, people worked very hard even if they didn’t have jobs in the western sense. I’ve met African women who have worked harder than anybody I’ve ever known and they didn’t work a job.
I guess I’m alone in feeling the way that I do about it and maybe I just fundamentally disagree with someindividuals’s interpretations of the situation, but it is just very sad. A very sad future indeed. Imagine a world that is controlled by people trying to convince you that you should be fine with this. I guess all I can do is keep it to myself that I hate it or be seen as crazy for thinking that people are so quick to jump on a bandwagon for what the majority or the most domineering opinions in the room.
Edit: I also see and understand your idea that people could just do art as a hobby if AI automates everything, but the reality is that it won’t do that. Likely the only available jobs will be the ones that are physically and emotionally all encompassing (such as home health care or something) and people won’t have the energy to even do art as a hobby. And AI will just take away every job opportunity anyway. Do you honestly see socialism being integrated into the US (at least) any time soon? It is creepy to just deduct humans to chemicals and meatsacks. Where is the empathy? Also, if you are implying I’m an idealist when it comes to art, are the people in this thread who argue against me really so naively idealist to believe that socialism and communism will be integrated any time soon? And even so, would it be utopia if it is seen as worthless to do anything because AI can do it better?
Not going to go over this very long(and expanding) post in its entirety, only focusing on the particularly cohesive ones, as I don’t feel like you totally understand my point. I am not saying “AI art good”, but rather that I think the root problem is capitalism. So the answer to this question:
has nothing to do with my point.
I do not think that this is a position devoid of empathy - I find myself able to love myself as a sack of meat, as I do not treat myself as more than I am. I understand that I care about other sacks of meat, in other words, other people. But I do not hesitate to claim that I absolutely am driven by chemicals, electrical signals in the brain; my ideas come from reality, from material processes, just like that of a computer.
Talk to their friends, play games, eat food, fall in love, study science, literature, and culture, and create art, and share it for the sake of human communication, not work and production. You yourself mention this is an important aspect of art, and indeed AI art does not even take away from this aspect. In fact, even in the status quo, people don’t need to draw fantastic things that are on par with professional artists to share art as a form of socialization, and similarly, people don’t necessarily learn to draw in hopes of making it a profession but just drawing to draw for yourself and for your friends. I myself have drawn something terrible multiple times and shared it with my friends - that’s fun, and under socialism, even with AI, this would be no different!
This fixation on mechanical materialism is disturbing. We are more than sacks of meat. We are each other and ourselves. We are social, biological, geographical, ideological, dialectical beings. Comparing ourselves to an AI is sophistry.
It’s kind if creepy that you’re deducing people to chemicals and their thoughts and life experience to be the same as a computer.
I’m not going to try and pull out a bunch of fancy theories and flowery language to get my point across but I still feel like everything that I have read here leaves me feeling hopeless that people don’t care about what happens with AI and how people are going to be affected materially and spiritually.
Sure, that sounds nice in theory, that people will just chill and fall in love and eat food together and there will be sunshine and gumdrops and roses if AI takes over and communism is realized. But that isn’t what is going to happen. That is why I’m saying that AI is a really bad thing for everyone in reality and where we stand with the world right now.
The reality is what people will be replaced by AI. Capitalism will continue to be the driver of the world, and a lot of people will live in abject poverty. There will be no opportunities to work except maybe for the people who are caregiving for the elderly and disabled (if robots do not take over that). And people will continue to shit on artists or people who are critical of AI replacing them. Information, education, art, culture, music, research will be centralized to corporations that use AI and the few that upkeep it. This is bad for a lot of reasons. And even if people start colonizing Mars, what will there be to do if robots and AI are doing all the work? I guess people will get bored enough to just start making their own creative works, but that goes back to what I was saying before that it will be met with a lot of resistance from people who hate artistsorr believe that people don’t deserve to have anything materially or spiritually.
People need a reason to live. Like I said, even if you are going to reduce people to “meatsacks” there is a reason why people NEED things outside of food, water, and shelter. I believe in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs but depending on the person and situation those needs can be moveable.
Can we stop this progression? I don’t know what is to be done - I guess we can only see it unfold and time will tell. But honestly I haven’t seen an argument that is giving me hope other than going back to the core of why I choose to be alive and keep going, and that is keep learning more and not give up. I guess that’s all I can do. Even if people tell me it’s futile.
(a slightly off-topic aside: I did not expect this particular post to become so heavily commented in; it wouldn’t surprise me if this post ends up with more comments than any other on Lemmygrad.)
Yeah, I didn’t expect this to blow up/be so controversial. I guess art is one of those things everyone knows and has an opinion on.
You can actually sort threads by most comment on Lemmygrad:
It’s not there yet but it’s on its way!
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What are your thoughts on digital art software like Photoshop?
As an artist, I think it is a net negative for us. Disregarding the copyright issue, I think it’s also consolidating power into large corporations, going to kill learning fundamental skills (rip next generation of artists), and turn the profession into a low skill minimum wage job. Artists that spent years learning and perfecting their skills will be worth nothing and I think it’s a pretty depressing future for us. Anways thoughts?
While there was controversy about the introduction of Photoshop (and likewise photography) in the art world, we saw/now see it as a tool that can help artists create more/better art. AI Art on the other hand, seems to be a tool for capitalists to forgo the need for artists at all (judging by the wording on AI Art companies statements, like aiming for no revisions on the final product). An example of an AI tool for artists would be a better magic wand tool. I think on an instinctual level, we humans can tell what is a tool and what is meant to replace us.
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My apologies, replied to the wrong person.
I hope that wit cracks through, clever.
Drawing an equals sign between Adobe Photoshop and Stable Diffusion isn’t “wit.” It’s moronic.
If you cannot recognise the problem with OP’s argument, that gun parodied, I think it is you that needs to get better with humour. Regression (in this case technological) is a very right wing and conservative mindset derivation. The cat is out of the bag, and I hope these copyright defending artists are not the ones rallying against destruction of copyright/IP industry when it comes to their enemies. After all, hypocrisy will look very bad.
Failing to understand the difference between Adobe Photoshop – a swiss army knife tool used by artists to create art – and Stable Diffusion – a deep learning model that uses, as input, the labor of millions of artists in order to produce remixes – is abysmally reductive.
These questions aren’t really directed at you and I’m not saying this to be provocative but because I can’t quite figure out what’s going on through this whole page: isn’t every technology the crystallised labour of workers who came before? I’ll have to double check myself, but isn’t that the definition of capital (I’m tempted to say ‘constant capital’)?
Why is the labour of Photoshop programmers, engineers, etc, and all the people whose work went into feeding those workers, lighting the rooms they worked in, powering the buildings, mining the energy for the power, and so on, any different to the labour of artists that gets fed into an AI machine?
Is art a uniquely different human activity? And if so, why? What sets it apart?
That’s a difficult question to answer :) I’ll leave that one to those more involved in the art world than I am.
You’re correct that labour is always involved in producing value. But labour is not always compensated for the full value they produce. The photoshop programmers, and all the people whose work went into feeding them, lighting the rooms they worked in, powering the buildings they worked in, mining the energy for the power, and so on… were all compensated for their work.
Obviously they weren’t fairly compensated. This is capitalism we’re talking about after all. And yes, there are limits to compensation, arrived upon by collective decisions made by society and spelled out in legal agreements (and yes of course, under capitalism, only a small subset of society makes those decisions). E.g., the photoshop programmers are not entitled to a piece of the sale of every artwork that an artist creates when using photoshop. Incidentally, this is part of why photoshop is so phenomenally expensive.
But as communists, we believe that labour is entitled to all value it produces. And in this scenario, the value that was created by these artists through their labour hasn’t been compensated at all, much less the full value. Stable Diffusion is absolutely worthless without a massive training dataset, and that dataset is produced by the labour of combined millions of artists and their works, none of whom granted permission to these tech companies to use their work.
And I think you’re right to avoid the philosophical question. Given the debate after the OP asked their question, I was brave to even hint at mine.
Although… People pay for Photoshop? I’m kidding, of course; shaky text you wouldn’t steal a bike…shaky text
Unless you were an AI company and it was a picture of a bike, apparently.
That’s a shitty move by the tech companies. They’ve got very sure of their right to information, especially since they started mass harvesting our data and we, generally, agreed to hand it over willingly for cheap shots of dopamine. I guess that famous saying is right: information wants to be free. Particularly if the person who wants it is willing just to take it.)
The whole point of analogy is to convey idea, not to be a dissertation detailing down to the vein and artery.
Artists are defending their interests and with it the whole copyright industry, and if you think this would have never happened, now you know that reality cannot be defied and delayed, and capitalism is simply accelerating things that we would have encountered as problems a lot later.
Artists were thinking they were going to become Picassos one day and rule among capitalist class. They would never be able to do that. They were and are a part of working class, and this is the boulder that has hit their heads now.
I’m pretty sure that literally nobody these days expects that they are going to “rule among the capitalist class” by becoming an artist. You have got to be kidding me. It’s ironic because most of the users on this site are programmers/involved in developing computer science and you know that they are more well off and have more status than anybody who has ever claimed to be an artist here that is an artist first and foremost, not a programmer and then an art hobbyist as a second.
Literally anybody can be an artist or do anything if they want to do the work. Itisn’t reserved to a special class or something. Like what the heck.
Your assumption that everybody here is a neckbeard programmer is not just wrong, but goes a little beyond being wrong. It is like those lib brains stereotyping everything with no depth in their takes. You are all over in this thread, like probably 1/5th comments, peddling this same thing, how everybody who counters OP is a programmer with no soul and empathy. Big WTF
Like everyone said, with every technology replacing human labor, the problem is only capitalism. I want to add that AI art will never replace human art because AI art is only useful, while human art is meaningful. Put up an AI-made art in a museum and nothing happens, it’s a picture on a wall, because the AI has nothing to say, nothing to make sense of. When watching human art, we start thinking about the why and the how, the History and worldview, the emotions, the thoughts behind it.
The reaction from artists community on the internet was very telling of how low the meaning of “art” have become in the capitalist world. Those extremely skilled individuals don’t see their talent being used for anything else than making profit for corporations, they can’t imagine being supported as artists making meaningful art and showing it to the people around them who will enjoy reflecting on it.
I agree that this is a worse problem under capitalism, but hypothetically under socialism, would there be UBI? (As I understand it, UBI is antithetical to socialism, as it gives all your power to the state). Or would artists get a cut of $ for every generated image (as it is currently, no artists are paid or part of these AI companies).
The precise inner workings of a future fully communist society will be determined through trial and error and trying to imagine them is utopian. Though we can start to think about art under the dictatorship of the proletariat. In my opinion it is reasonable to envision the practice of art as a profession the same way we manage academic research, with autonomous institutions that pay salaries to students and professors so they continue practicing their discipline both freely and with excellence.
Of course amateur art should also be made as accessible as possible
Actually I disagree. The AI has something to say but it would be rather related to the mathematics, 1s and 0s, the algorithm generating the art rather than the artistic aspect.
My point was that, we can automate the process of creating images, but art as a form human expression cannot be automated. I’m not sure what you meant, but I don’t think it is contradictory right?
Following this, I think we get to the question: is all image production ‘art’ even if it’s done by humans?
Well it depends widely on your premises, plus there are a lot of philosophical answers to what is art. Worse, I don’t see a standard Marxist answer to that. We could consider that separating art as a form of meaningful expression and art as the craft of images is pointless since both are labor therefore both are either free or alienated. But we could also consider that all form of signaling and practical applications of image-making aren’t sufficient to cultural life and therefore “art” without practical purpose should be distinguished in order to be preserved by materially supporting artists
Disclaimer, I have spent 100 hours in the last 7 days working with AI art.
I think AI art is absolutely wonderful for art as a medium. I think art is entirely what’s in your head and the illustration part is something else. It’s a skill and a trade. Trades go away as technology advances, and it sucks for those working that trade in the short term but allows greater human productive output in the long term. But with art, I want everyone to be able to participate. It used to be that you had to master illustrating which took years and years and was practically unattainable for most people. Now anyone can create art. And skilled illustrators can create art faster. Hypothetically. We’re not quite there yet.
Drawing isn’t my strength, so my art medium is Blender. For a typical illustration, I do about 90% in Blender and draw 10% by hand. So let me talk about what I know, in the field of 3D art. My art doesn’t personally suffer from this, but I do see it a lot from other creators: In 3D, creating everything you want in a illustration is unrealistic. Therefore many creators download assets and build their scenes with those building blocks. Which is completely valid, it’s what a lot of non-3D artists do too, but you very often see those assets made by other artists strongly influence how a piece turns out. And that isn’t right. You didn’t translate your art to the screen, it got perverted by the difficulty of it. If purchasing and modifying those assets were easier, more of those 3D artists would create images closer to the ideas in their heads.
What I’ve been experimenting with now is about 30% Stable Diffusion, 40% Blender and 30% drawing on top. I absolutely love it. My workflow isn’t very optimal yet, but the quality of my art has improved. I’m excited for the AI tools to get better.
I just wanna say that I know your type of workflow and it absolutely has my respect, as you would need skills in 2d illustration as well as 3d modelling, and you would definitely need to put in the work to make good art. It’s just that AI algorithms will get better and prompting will also get better, so soon you will just need to type very little to get what you want, bypassing the need for 30% AI, 40% Blender and 30% drawing, and into 99% AI and 1% write a sentence.
Thank you. Fundamentally I think the 99% AI split is a good thing. Not for the livelihood of anyone who currently gets paid to create art, since why would a film or games company pay for a hundred artists when their competitors can get similar results with a fraction of the cost. But it’ll take power away from those companies as well. If someone with a passion for cartoons wants to make a short and are able to do so spending their afternoons for two or three months, then that’s likely to be something they do. As opposed to now where a single person would have to spend two or three years, after developing their skills, and still be left with many compromises. If that short then only gets a few views on YouTube, was it really worth years of your social life? So practically the only cartoon shorts that get made are those with backing from capitalists. And yeah, the vast vast majority of art will be low quality, derivative, and unseen, but the vast majority of art is unseen today too. I want anyone to be able to express themselves. And that’s me included. My trade isn’t actually directly in danger yet because many of the art skills I know are technical and can’t yet be done by an AI. But fuck it, I don’t like those parts of the process, I want those parts to get automated, because those parts to me are engineering and not art.
As many have said, my main issue with it is it being implemented under capitalism. I think under socialism it could be responsibly used and be a tool for artists–I am an artist and I put great value on the human touch and human error, but it would also be fun to have a brain-to-paper device that can instantly put what I am trying to do into physical reality. There is beauty in art I make that is not the intial idea I had–yadda yadda “the journey”–but it would be cool as almost a new medium of sorts. I already draw, write songs, make beats, make video, write fiction, paint, photograph, and occasionally many other things, including a Google Deep Dream account where I occasionally make AI art by combining two pictures of my choosing as input–I see it as fast, fun, ultimately not as fulfilling as my human art but that’s okay because that’s not its purpose, and it has its own unique flair and still requires my artistic eye and a degree of skill to achieve something pretty.
I will say too, being an artist to make a living has always been my dream, and it is already just shy of an impossibility. I have seen artists that “make it” and a huge amount of them only do to any degree because they either sell out, hyper specialize, have daddy’s money / daddy’s connections, or something similarly capitalistic. AI art under capitalism to me is just more of the same at worst. Thank God capitalism is dying.
EDIT: Rereading my last paragraph I came off a little bitter…because I was a little bitter. I was having a bad mood when I wrote it. To addendum, I acknowledge there are some people who are successful simply because of hard work and a little bit of luck, and while I work hard I also spread myself incredibly thin and I have had plenty of fortune in other avenues of my life, I am already in some ways more fortunate than most people. Just wanted to clarify both the good and the bad.
I saw your profile ask, do you like hip hop, and thought, why yes I do. So I listened to some of your music and it’s – I think this is how the cool kids would put it – dope af – although I could be confusing my generational lingo and even be a generation behind. Loved the music and the lyrics with the images and the text showing up on the screen. And I mean this as a compliment: it’s like if Charles Bukowski rapped and edited videos.
I suppose this is why I’m not too worried about AI art. It won’t replace what humans make. I’ll still want to listen, watch, or read what humans distinctly produce because I turn to art to understand the human condition.
Hip hop was ruined some time ago. There are some great lyricists, even popular ones, but it’s almost all boilerplate and the videos look the same. Half the lyrics are product placement. I don’t begrudge the artists. (Except Kanye. The turncoat. Can’t believe it would be he who held the nail steady while Rowling and Rowan Atkinson hammered shut the lid on my childhood nostalgia.) But every so often, you hear an artist who, more or less, makes the art they want to make and not what a studio wants. And it keeps the art, the genre alive.
(If a studio does come along and offers you millions to make the music they want to hear, please don’t turn down the offer on my account!)
Hey, just saw this and wanted to say thank you so much!!! That means a lot, all of it.
I have a new album I’m working on that’ll hopefully be out within a few months. I’ve been trying to focus on being more listenable to a general audience without sacrificing the art and the message. If a studio offered me millions, I’d take it and just infiltrate and 180 on em 😎
But again, hey, thank you for your compliment and thank you for taking time to listen to my music, it seriously means the world!
You’re welcome 😁
Please let me know when the album’s out.
“hip hop was some time ago”
No it wasn’t. It’s just changed over time. Art reflects life, and more specifically hip hop reflects the material reality of New Afrikan people, which right now is unfortunately very influenced by capitalist culture, but again that’s just our material reality. It also doesn’t help that everyone steals from us and therefore there’s an oversaturation of trap beats, but there’s nothing wrong with hip hop itself.
I’m probably just nostalgic for 90s music.
So who would I be listening to now? Who’s good?
Almost two weeks late but clipping., JPEGMAFIA, JID, Zack Fox, and Ski Mask the Slump God; if you like Stormzy then def Dizzee Rascal, Kano, Flowdan, and Tempa T
I’ll take a look at these, thanks. I do like Dizzee Rascal and Kano, but it’s been a while since I listened to them.
Honestly imo it’s best to go to Spotify or something and just start listening to some playlists. Not everything is a hit and not all artists have more than just one good song, but you’ll find what you like and don’t like just by listening, you’ll find one particular artist that you will like and will be able to branch off from there.
Also I’m bad at giving recommendations lol
Give me one name :D
Who’s your favourite rapper right now? Or most played?
I’ll recommend Stormzy to you. Heavy is the Head album. Also his freestyle about Grenfell Tower. “They gonna get me for this, so stay woke.” And they did. The bastards.
I love Stormzy!
I’m not sure what you like, but in general high quality modern hip hop artists IMO would be (I’m sure you’ve already heard several of these) (no order):
-Kendrick Lamar -XXXTENTACION -J. Cole -Earl Sweatshirt -Isaiah Rashad -Lil Darkie -Vince Staples -Childish Gambino -Little Simz -Angel Haze -Kilo Kish -JID -SZA -BROCKHAMPTON -Joji -Ski Mask tha Slump God -Kanye West (yes I know 😔) -Fukkit -Big Sean -Lil Wayne -Denzel Curry -DOECHII -Smino -Tyler the Creator -Tierra Whack
I’m no expert and even many of my favorite artists I haven’t listened to their whole discography.
I could definitely narrow this down if I knew what vibes you’re looking for, many offer very very different qualities and some are very polarizing (for good reasons).
Thanks for this list! These will keep me busy 🎧
Aight I got you, lol.
Playboi Carti, Shofu, Migos (rip Takeoff), and DaBaby are who I’m listening to now
I also make my own music, mostly instrumentals
Will check out your stuff when I’m at work 😎
A YouTube link was detected in your comment. Here are links to the same video on Invidious, which is a YouTube frontend that protects your privacy:
this was already a thing in many places, AI or not. (creative work salaries are absolutely abysmal in my country).
Artists worrying about losing their jobs and livelihoods is heartbreaking of course. But history will keep repeating itself by replacing humans with machines and AI if we don’t put a stop to the capitalist madness we live in.
I have way more to say about this but the brain fog is strong right now. Solidarity with you and all the other people at risk of losing their jobs to capitalist greed.
Thank you, I just feel like why automate something that people enjoy doing? When I think of a utopia, I think of having free time to socialize and to pursue your passions. I wish everyone can be artists (or whatever else you want), instead the only jobs left will be fry cooks (no disrespect to these skilled labourers), since it seems it will be the last thing to be automated.
I’m sorry that all your responses have been programmers calling you a luddite and implying that artists are either hopeless amateurs or petite-bourgeois profit-seeking dilletantes. People seem unaware that existing and historical socialist countries have usually provided better support for artists and a more socially beneficial outlet. As some have rightly pointed out, high art under capitalism is little more than a physical NFT, a plaything for the bourgeois. In comparison, the DPRK is well known for its artists and sculptors who are hired around the world to create public art such as statues and monuments. AI-generated art represents the maximum level of commodification for art and specifically in the case of art this produces something deeply unsatisfactory to many, myself included. The reason is that art is at its base a form of communication between the artist and their audience, and in the case of performing arts this relationship is mediated by an interpreter. As a human being with subjective experience, what we find fulfilling in all art is this communication: we are experiencing some meaningful idea, emotion, through the artistic logic of its creator. The artwork also exists as a snapshot of the historical moment around its creation. And the act of creating art is as important as the role of the audience. Art does not really have a practical use value outside of this deeply human, subjective, irrational case, and so when AI is used to generate a finished product, or it is the primary source of the idea, the commodified artform that results is stripped of any historical context around its creation, and there is no one trying communicate from the other side, trying to express something from within. There is only the consumer and infinite stream of indistinguishable pseudo-art.
Thank you for this uplifting comment.
This has been the only response here that has made the most sense.
i mean, these tools will allow people without art knowledge to make a picture based on ideas in their imagination to enjoy. obviously will be a pretty tough enemy on people that are in the art medium just for profit.
in the other hand, it will allow coomers (the main userbase for enemies of AI art) to spit tons of lewd artworks free, making some artists leave the medium because they won’t be able to profit from it
in the marketing sector, it will be pretty bad, because business won’t hire graphic designers if a software can make them a logo or an art for a webpage.
that’s why we need socialism…to avoid that artsy automation leaves people without some style of life means, but petite bourgeoisie artist maybe will be open to be radicalized to marxism with the advent of AI art
I feel like, artists don’t go into art (a job known for “the starving artist”) for profit. It seems like the artists you are talking about are the cream of the top, while ignoring the masses of artists making little to “average” money.
I’m interested to see if the quality can improve as time passes; because, as it is now, the quality can not be compared to an individual artist, especially when it comes to very specific details. While I don’t blame you for harboring negative feelings towards A.I., I’m not interested in arbitrarily stunting technological growth to preserve jobs. Hmm…this might be an idealist take. I probably shouldn’t have commented (lol).
it’s definitely a field that seems to be advancing rapidly just going by the two minute papers YouTube channel. I think we’ll see significant advancement but it will remain difficult to get very specific results.
You and other people have argued, and cogently, that the introduction of AI art will be a blight on the artistic professions under the economic burden of a capitalist system. However, I want to bring up the counterpoint that under capitalism, art is already being maximally removed from public life and either reduced to marketable commodities, or confined to private spaces as a hobby, and this has nothing to do with any influence on behalf of AI. Instead, I want to point out what a great thing this could be, if capitalists wouldn’t fuck us all over with it.
The essence of what AI does is to open the door towards artistic creation to all those who suffer from lack of talent, time, or education to become an artist themselves. In due course, everyone will be able to print out pretty pictures, unique in the world, and hang them into their living room. They will just have to tell the AI the motif they want, and perhaps the setting and the style.
But in time they will figure out to tweak little things about their painting, tell it to make a sunrise instead of a blue sky, tell it to add mountains to the flat land, dress their family portrait a little more formal on special occasions, or reroute the motorway around a view of their city. They will experiment with different colours and directions of light. They will attempt to micromanage the AI in finer and finer ways; and soon, without ever needing the skill to draw or paint, they will experience something approximating the decisions actual artists have to make when it comes to composing a painting. It will enable them to express themselves independently of technique, much like a keyboard allows you to bring across your point legibly even if your handwriting sucks.
Not only that, but once come to maturity, AI art can be a godsend for the many other professionals who have to work with imagery without being trained as artists. It may once be able to draw plans, construct 3D models, and even compose illustrative videos for city planners, architects, designers of all sorts, writers, engineers, textbook authors, or scientists and mathematicians who want to visualise concepts from their research without learning to tame complicated software; and in return, playing with it can also provide them with inspiration for their work.
Of course, people who learn to make art properly must be rewarded for it, and there are plenty of things AI cannot do such as actually painting the murals or laying the mosaics, but there are enough people out there who are just bad at drawing, and at some point it often becomes a severe impediment to the otherwise brilliant work they are doing, and under a better economic system, AI would be there to help them without disenfranchising trained artists like you.
Does a person know how to create a new dish or know how to better the flavour if all they do is microwave frozen food? I feel the creation of such a shortcut will destroy fundamental skills in the next generation (same with writing currently, as students are getting AI to write/cheat essays).
I fail so see how artists can get better at art without dedicating most of their time to it (ie; creating bad art sometimes for their job). Sorry if this comes off as dick-ish.
My issue with this is that AI art generators are, buzzwords aside, nothing more than fancy human art remixers. Yes, they can grab characters from one style and transform them into another thanks to very complex math, but to make this possible they all make use of a huge database of copyrighted, stolen human art taken without the artists’ permission from the internet. No one asked us if we wanted our art to be assimilated into this monstrosity, and there’s even cases of generators outputting existing artworks virtually untouched, with artist watermarks and all. These art generators are breaking every copyright in the world, but artists alone don’t have much leverage and then nerds try to obfuscate things and make philosophical arguments to justify this. But these are not human artists taking inspiration from existing art and creating something new, it’s a machine remixing copyrighted works taken in without permission as raw material. And then the other issue is that due to the way neural networks work, you can’t ask the generator for its sources on any given output.
So it’s something that shouldn’t be allowed to be released to the public unless it uses only public domain artwork or artwork taken with the artists’ permission. And then it should preferably be able to include sources with the output.
That’s all aside from the economical implications and the effect this is having on the livelihoods of freelance artists everywhere.
Are you trying to justify this very thing that corporations are trying to keep up for as long as they can? Because copyright should be abolished.
The issue I have with your post is justifying copyright. You’re justifying something that corporations have been trying to extend for many years. Copyright (and Intellectual Property in general) exists as a result of capitalism trying to profit from the distribution of works. You’re justifying the profiting from copyright. Is this really a proletarian thing to do?
Copyright should be abolished, yes. Under socialism. Under capitalism it’s a double-edged weapon, but it’s one of the only defenses we proletarian creators have against the capitalist class. I would hate it if a capitalist grabbed my music off Bandcamp without my permission and used it for their commercial project without even crediting me. Class perspective.
Agreed. The copyright system under capitalism is ass, but the Free Software community – I repeat, the Free Software community, not the “Open Source” community – has leveraged it to great effect. The bourgeois world has gone through the hassle of completely rewriting entire compiler toolchains (e.g. LLVM) – something that takes absurdly high levels of technical sophistication and work time to do – solely to avoid the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC), its sponsor (the Free Software Foundation (FSF)), and its strong copyleft license (the GPL). Strong copyleft licenses like the GPL and Affero GPL, that require all derivative works to have the same license, scare the absolute shit out of Big Tech and are verboten in their organizations.
Another example besides tech is the Creative Commons. In particular, their licenses that have share-alike stipulations require re-use down the entire chain. And if “you can’t make money off my shit” is important, their licenses can also have Non-Commercial stipulations. I wonder just how much Creative Commons work has been used in training the various stable diffusion AI models.
Copyright, under these specific conditions, benefits the proletariat. It provides a battle-tested protection, however imperfect, against direct exploitation. A protection strong enough that the bourgeoisie strives to avoid it. They, and the petite bourgeoisie, flee from it, instead preferring timid “open source” licenses that permit capitalists to take the work of the proletariat and keep it for themselves.
Richard Stallman, the founder of the Free Software Foundation, is tragically and terminally liberal. However, I believe his essays in Free Software, Free Society are absolutely worth reading for anybody that writes or uses code (read: basically everybody). Especially “Copyleft: Pragmatic Idealism”.
It isn’t a class perspective at all. You’re justifying the petit-bourgeoisie in retaining their works so that they can continue making a profit off their work. It isn’t a defence of ‘proletarian creator’ nor is it a defence of most creators, because most individual creators do not copyright their works. Copyright has, and always will be, a defence for corporations, not for individual creators.
Source? All works are copyrighted from the moment they’re made, they don’t have to be registered. You’re not being dialectical by saying “well, the petit-bourgeoisie also benefits from it”. While it’s true that individual proletarian creators still have the lower ground in copyright court claims, due to the lawyer purchasing power capitalists have, at the very least it provides a legal ground for defense. Having rules and laws under capitalism is better for everyone, proletarians included, than having none. If you believe a rule-less capitalism would be better, then you’re an anarcho-capitalist. And then, under socialism, there would be many more rules and laws than there are now. If there’s copyright under socialism or not (which historically there has been), that’s a whole different topic because the very law would have a different nature due to the political system in place.
Are you confusing copyright with fraud? Fraud is definitely an issue, and should be addressed, but I doubt many people would throw a hissy fit over an adaptation of someone’s IP. Only corporations really care because it impacts their hold on the IP, and they can gain some money from those who ‘wrongly’ stole it.
What? I never said this. How come everytime I speak to one of you ‘anti-AI artist’ people, you always make up some sort of strawman?
Dialectics is when you justify copyright. I did think about this dialectically. From a dialectical perspective, only the bourgeoisie benefit from copyright. the Petit-bourgeoisie may benefit as well, but to a much lesser degree, and proletarians do not benefit at all. Copyright is used to intensify the class differences of ownership. When it comes to copyright works, you don’t own the work. You also don’t own the ideas that came with that work. If you steal these ideas and utilise them as a form of ‘inspiration’, or even directly ripping off the IP so that you can create your own fan project, you would be sued. That is dialectical.
What is not dialectical on the other hand, is justifying copyright so that the petit-bourgeoisie can benefit more so. Copyright is nothing but antagonistic to the working class.
I’m sorry. It looks like we’re working with different definitions of copyright. We’ll just be misunderstanding each other, so please let me know your definition first, in order to move this conversation into a positive direction.
The real question is why you’re so obsessed with defending AI and calling out “anti-AI artist” people.
I agree, the potential of this technology is constrained by the society that uses it. And under capitalism, that means it’ll be converted into a tool for worker exploitation. There are so many possibilities for AI art but we all know that what’s really gonna happen is that artists will have to compete for work with robots now ):
I hope the situation doesn’t get any worse for you or other artists. It’s a difficult enough field as it is.
What kind of art do you make?
Thank you! I mainly do portraits, as the face was always captivated me the most. Ironically (or not) one of the first things AI mastered.
Nice. Portraits are difficult! But I do love me a portrait gallery. As almost every image is a portrait (there’s always the odd ‘creative’ interpretation of what a head/face is), you can really focus on comparing the different styles in a way that’s a bit more difficult in a more general gallery, where the subject matter is also different in every piece.
What’s your style? Like hyperrealism or…?
I like to do semi-realism, but I feel like I need to develop my style more. Here’s a part of a piece I haven’t posted anywhere to not doxx myself.
Bloody hell, that’s incredible! (Pun intended.)
I know the styles are different but I can kinda see some Cézanne in there (subtly). Maybe in the palette? Have you studied him at all?
Honestly, that’s fantastic work.
No, I don’t know if any of the artists I studied have studied him, but I guess it’s cause I didn’t go to art school :P
It’s interesting, but would I personally have a use for it artistically at this point? No. Art is this funny thing that is at the same time insanely overvalued and so underappreciated. I feel most people don’t appreciate art in the detail of the work. They just want something aesthetic to plaster their profiles with.
But at the same time it has become something only elites with shit taste can break into as a career opportunity.
I hate the art scene and I don’t see anything that revolutionary or exceptionally cool ab AI art beyond saving some time for creators. It does have potential to make artists make a prolific amount of work instead of having apprentice workshops do it all the art for them. But depending on the art, it’s not really a good thing.
I think you are mainly thinking about high art, which I also hate (money laundering scheme). I was thinking more about the commercial artists which create all the popular media we see and consume (think artstation artists, which was the inspiration of this post).
Yeah, I agree. I just know cappies will always use any tech to its most cynical and exploitative.
I think it’s interesting. Certainly as someone with no artistic talent who role-plays and often needs references for settings, items, characters it stands to potentially make my life a lot easier for that.
I agree with what China is doing, namely that all AI generated visual works should require mandatory watermarking built into the process doing it. It shouldn’t be some big ugly thing that distracts from the work, quite the contrary I believe it should be tiny and unobtrusive or even invisible to the naked eye but I believe we should protect the efforts of human artists by allowing people to identify what is and isn’t AI generated visual imagery.
The watermarking is also essential for combating disinformation which even if the whole western world were to fall tomorrow and socialism established worldwide by 2030 would still be an issue from lingering reactionaries for many many decades.
I do agree that it is like industrialization in what it will do to certain professions. People still hire tailors to create special pieces, you just need a lot of money to afford that, some minimum wage person had little hope of hiring a personal tailor for custom pieces before or after the fact but now has access to affordable clothing. It will be the same with art. Sucks if you’re an artist but the automobile and steam engine sucked for those whose profession was stabling and shoeing horses too, yet we can’t hold back progress. People will still commission artistic works, it’ll just revert to being very skilled artists and very wealthy people.
There is going to be an adjustment period. What we need is not to ban AI art but to adopt socialism. A society that reaches communism or even the high stage of socialism will not need fear from this. No artist will starve because computers can generate art and there will likely if anything be a resurgence of moderate and low skilled people creating art as a creative endeavor in newly found free time once exploitation has ended. Oh people will still use computer generated art for their DnD games or this and that but with so much free time and unlocking of human potential, no one is going to ask a computer to paint the ceiling of a great new building of the people or a train station, they’ll have local artists do so.
Capitalists are not about to allow banning of a cost-cutting measure any more than they would have allowed banning the steam engine or mechanical factories to save the jobs of workers. They’re just not. So what we need once again is a new economic mode, we need socialism. That will harmonize everything. Until then, things continue to decay, conditions get worse for workers, all workers. And all we can do is try to have solidarity with and support one another. But not to go around acting like luddites, that if we smash the machines we can change things. This course is set, it has been done, it will continue to be done. All we can do is push for regulation under this situation and of course push for socialism.
Can’t believe I’m reading this take on a communist website. If you’re arguing from a capitalists’ standpoint, then there’s the counterpoint that the existing art generators are full of copyrighted artwork taken without the authors’ permission, and so they should be deemed illegal (this would be true under socialism as well tbf). Then further generators would only be allowed to use either public domain or properly licensed artwork as its training set, which will inevitably lower the variety and quality of the outputs (sorry programmers).
From a communist standpoint we should stand in solidarity with the artists whose livelihoods are being put in risk and oppose unethical AI art.
This is fundamentally different because the generators were fed basically every artwork on the internet, no matter if they were copyrighted or not, in order to make the thing work. They should have never been able to become public services, much less PAID services, and should have been restricted to academic circles as proofs-of-concept, due to the blatant and massive copyright infringement taking place. This is allowed to go on because artists are usually poor and have no individual leverage, but say, if tomorrow an AI movie generator was released that was fed every Hollywood movie ever and could output a Marvel-quality blockbuster with just a prompt and enough time, believe me, shit would be sued to destruction in days.
Artists should be collectivizing right now and preparing a lawsuit against those operating AI art generators fed on their copyrighted artwork. So yes, the proverbial machine can be smashed in this case, if only because it infringes copyright law in such a massive way.
Copyright is bad actually and should be abolished. It constrains creative potential and is a relic that has been weaponized under late capitalism to an extreme end. Intellectual property is disgusting nonsense.
Why should a genius invention that derives from an earlier idea entitle the holder of the earlier idea to all the money or most of it? Why should someone who sits on something they filed be able to demand someone who comes up with a practical use for it pays them money?
And why should someone’s kids or estate or some company be able to hold the rights to someone’s art and charge royalties for decades after their death?
We should have publicly funded research universities and laboratories that should churn out ideas for all to use and take in whatever direction they’d like.
I agree the capitalists are ignoring their own rules to plunder and create a machine for creating money without (as much) labor but they’ve never really been strict about following their own rules and it’s kind of an odd move to whine that they’re dishonest and not following the capitalist IP theory and rulebook.
You think you can use the master’s tools to tear down his house while he just stands idly by and shrugs? It’s possible they could win a short-term victory but you are using the bourgeois legal system under the bourgeois government. But only if the bourgeois think they can use it exploit the proletariat further, to impoverish and hurt most people. If need be they could arrange very cheap licensing or hire artists to feed the machine, you’d at most set them back a bit. They can after all draw from many public domain artworks from dead artists, from artwork done by corporate artists under contract, and so on and so forth. Consider the manga artist who creates for some publication. They license all their work to them and that corporation can form an agreement to sell access for fractions of a cent per drawing to AI generators, perhaps in the hope of replacing their artists someday or perhaps just for some quick cash.
And it’s an odd legal argument you need make in service of it too. Can artists sue other artists who as art students studied their art for techniques which they copied? That’s what the AI company lawyers will say. Because the AI is doing something similar though a bit more direct. You can’t point to an exact lifting from a given work so much as broad learning from styles, trends, and themes and re-using them.
But all of art for all of human history has been taking from others, their themes, themes in nature, inspirations, idols looked up to. Which is why I find this idea dangerous. If the art was available for public viewing, is an artist who looks through deviant-art profiles and learns a style from them and then opens their own store a thief as well? Why not?
I’d almost fear more a ruling in the favor of the artists to prevail against that argument, a nightmarish dystopia where you’re fined or billed for your eyes wandering to a copyrighted work that you haven’t subscribed to a plan to view. A total monetization of all art, ideas, etc to an extreme draconian degree.
I agree that copyright has been perverted into a capitalist device that hampers creativity and innovation in current society, but look at how socialist countries have implemented the law and you’ll see it’s not an inherent contradiction, especially in the earlier stages of socialism. Just to be clear, I’m not in favor of Mickey Mouse law. Shit has to be regulated up to a rational point. But as I said somewhere else, if I, as a struggling artist, make something and upload it online just to show people, I don’t want some huge corporation to grab it and monetize it without my consent or approval, or a bigger, more popular artist to claim it as theirs, make money off it, and not even give me credit. That’s what would happen if we abolished copyright now, under capitalism, it would be a free-for-all, plain anarchy. Like it or not but it also keeps blatant robbery in check, under the current system. I strongly believe there would be laws with a similar good-faith purpose under socialism, with numerous clauses and exceptions so they couldn’t be abused.
It might sound idealistic and I don’t think it will be the end of the struggle, but it’s one of the only legal devices we have against them under the current system. Collectively we could achieve a lot as well.
I guess so. It’s still worth fighting for. Pure cynicism isn’t gonna help the socialist cause. We want revolution, or fixing the cause of the illness, but waiting for ideal conditions will only prolong people’s suffering right now.
I can see where you’re coming from but I don’t buy the sci-fi hypothetical dystopian scenario as an argument in favor of AI art. Outlandish logical conclusions are also how liberals claim “authoritarianism” would end, but I digress.
And the human artist’s lawyer will say: one is a human taking inspiration from another human and making something creative out of it, the other is a computer program remixing existing artwork but not adding anything creative on top of it. Therefore it’s a purely derivative work. Some lawyers have already said it, AI art can’t be copyrighted because there’s no original creation involved.
Another way of seeing it would be if I made a sculpture and claimed copyright, then someone else started making 3D printed versions of the sculpture in random colors. I still hold the copyright to the underlying artwork, while the other person could maybe hold copyright to the application of a different material and coloring.
Again, sorry if it appears to you that I’m working under a capitalist copyright framework, but we live in a capitalist world and we’re even more fucked if we don’t even try to fight legally for the few rights we have. Cynicism helps the enemy in this case since it translates into inactivity. The nature of copyright itself and the question of its existence under socialism is a whole different topic. Let’s not fall into the “ideological purity” trap either.
Well said, from my understanding, unless UBI is a thing under socialism (which it shouldn’t be?) copyright laws would still be needed for the artist to make a living, no?
There’s no difference between a human looking at a piece of art or an AI doing it. I’m a human, and the art I create is influenced by art I’ve seen. It took Gundam to show me the beauty in cargo lifts.
There is a difference. You’re a human, not a machine. Don’t compare yourself to one. We artists don’t compare ourselves to them, either. But you’re right in that, to a layperson, AI art seems to evoke the same emotions as human art. But you know why that is? Because AI art is also human art, just remixed by a machine. The problem is that the machine can’t tell you its sources because either the programmers didn’t care about coding in credits and only took copyrighted artwork in bulk as raw material, or it’s very hard for the neural network algorithm to tell you how it came up with an output.
On the topic of inspiration, we as artists love it when other artists are influenced by us. “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” as they say. If another artist likes us they’re also a fan. That’s great. But we’re not fond of an AI pretending to be us in front of non-artists, because 1. it’s just a program that took our art (without permission) from its database because it was tagged as appropriate, and 2. it doesn’t even give us credit. I mean, as far as we know, the programmers who coded the AI didn’t even take one look at our art, they just mass downloaded whole websites and our art came along with them. We don’t like that.
Edit: Whoever downvoted me, at least refute my points.
I’m an artist. It’s my full time job.
These quotes all to me sound like you’re implying I’m not, and therefore my opinion is less valid.
Sorry, I was multitasking when I wrote that post and forgot that part. If you as an artist are alright with an AI assimilating your art, you could be one of the people donating their artwork to train an ethically-sourced dataset. It should be consensual like that.