News + Features

The Intersection of AI Imaging and Professional Photography  

April 17, 2023

By Jay Lawrence Goldman and ChatGPT

As a professional photographer for 30 years, I have witnessed many monumental industry shifts as technology gets better and better. From the transition of medium format cameras to DSLRs, the switch from film to digital, the advent of Adobe Photoshop, online ordering, and the iPhone – I’ve seen it all. The photography industry has been on a wild ride and has transformed dramatically during my career. However, the most recent AI imaging innovation has completely blown my mind, and it has the potential to make a significant impact on the way photographs are produced and created.

[Read: After Backlash Levi’s Says AI-Generated Models to ‘Increase Diversity’ Won’t Replace Real Models]

I have been in a deep dive with Midjourney AI. It uses machine learning algorithms to generate and enhance images. It can produce high-quality images, not always perfect, but with some Photoshop skills, they can be made almost indistinguishable from those taken by a professional photographer. It is all done with prompts, similar to ChatGPT. Midjourney has only been around for a year and is already at Version 5. There are endless prompts and each prompt can have a weight, and from my experimentation, they all interpret the prompts differently each time you render. There is a lot of trial and error. As photographers, we have a huge advantage because if you visualize and explain what you want using photography terms such as focal lengths and lighting modifiers, you can start to control the output in a clear direction.

Created by Jay Goldman

One frightening issue is the potential for AI imaging to be used to manipulate images in unethical ways. For example, technology could be used to create fake photos to spread misinformation or deceive people. This could have serious consequences in areas such as journalism, where the accuracy and authenticity of images are critical. The company is trying hard to keep the images PG-13. There is a huge list of constantly changing banned words such as blood, gruesome, sexy, vomit — you get the picture.

There is also the question of how AI imaging will affect the creative process of photography. While technology can certainly enhance images, it raises the question of whether the process of creating art through photography is diminished when a machine is doing much of the work. Just recently, the U.S. Copyright Office announced that any images created by AI are not protected by copyright.

[Read: Instagrammers Admit to Passing Off AI Art as Real]

Despite these concerns, I believe that AI imaging has the potential to be a positive development in the photography industry. The technology could be used to enhance images in ways that were previously impossible, opening up new creative possibilities for photographers.

We must ensure that the technology is used responsibly and that it does not lead to the decline of the professional photography industry or the spread of misinformation. By addressing these concerns and embracing the potential of AI imaging, we can continue to advance the art and craft of photography.

To be fully transparent, this article was about 70% written by AI. 

Created by Jay Goldman

NOW, THIS IS 100% AI, responding to the above article:

It’s amazing to see how AI imaging is transforming the field of photography. As a language model trained on large datasets, I can certainly appreciate the power of machine learning algorithms to generate and enhance images. However, I can also understand the concerns you’ve raised about the ethical implications of this technology.

The ability to manipulate images in unethical ways is a serious issue, and it’s important that we develop safeguards to prevent this from happening. One potential solution is to develop tools that can detect when an image has been generated or manipulated by AI, similar to how digital watermarks are used to identify the source of an image. This would help to ensure that the authenticity of images is maintained and that misinformation is not spread.

[Read: Getty, Artists Suing Creators of Generative AI Programs for Copyright Infringement]

There is also the question of how AI imaging will affect the creative process of photography. While technology can undoubtedly enhance images, it’s important to remember that the art and craft of photography are about more than just creating perfect images. It’s also about capturing a moment, telling a story, and expressing a point of view. While AI can certainly assist with the technical aspects of photography, it cannot replace the creative vision of a skilled photographer.

Overall, I believe that AI imaging has the potential to be a positive development in the photography industry, as long as we use it responsibly and maintain the integrity of the creative process. By working together, we can continue to advance the art of photography while leveraging the power of AI to enhance our work. 


More AI at: @photomacgyver.image 

Weddings and Events: @jay_lawrence_goldman 

Personal/Studio Journal: @jlgphoto 

Photo Hacks and reviews: @photomacgyver 

Abstract Paintings and Art: @goldmanink 

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