Are We Entering A New Era of "Refurbished Ideas?"
Thoughts about AI's impact on creativity
How are you? I hope you’re doing well.
Lately, I’ve been thinking hard about the potential impact AI could have on visual storytelling creativity.
What is Creativity?
Creativity is the ability to produce or develop original work, theories, techniques, or thoughts. A creative individual typically displays originality, imagination, and expressiveness.
-American Psychology Association
In other words, creativity is our capability to create something originally new using a novel process generated from diverse sources with valuable outcomes.
True! You can easily argue that every new idea you come up with is likely influenced by external sources like people you talk to, articles you read, etc.
However what makes your creativity unique is that you run everything you learn against your personal experiences, beliefs, and other sources you deem important.
Pretty much like the words you’re reading now come from my “well of experiences” plus external sources I find interesting.
BTW that’s the reason for the RE in RESEARCH. You’re retracing the work of others, building upon it, and adding your spin to it.
When you compare your unique database of knowledge and experiences you draw your creativity from vs. AI’s vast training pool, there’s no competition, right?
The trick is to leverage AI’s vast knowledge and computational muscles to express your unique creativity.
If you use AI not as a research/analytics tool but as a Do-It-For-Me Content Creator, AI will function as a giant “washing machine” with several stage cycles, digesting your request against massive human knowledge and spitting out “refurbished ok ideas.”
That’s why keeping your creative control is paramount.
Here is an Augmented AI experiment I did the other day.
I played the Art Director and asked my designer (DALL·E 3) to mockup this washing machine metaphor I later added the text labels with Canva:
And you’re right, this refurbished visual of a washing machine is of course by itself based on a gazillion of other washer images in DALLE’s training data.
I chose this image after going through several iterations - applying my creative judgment.
Let’s look at why creativity matters, two campaign examples, and the larger implications on creativity.