Artificial Intelligence in Fiction: The Bestiary Chronicles, by Steve Coulson

Santiago Morante Cendrero    10 January, 2023

It is common in the era of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to hear about how this technology can revolutionise different areas of human life, from medicine to manufacturing. However, in our previous posts, we have mainly dealt with the treatment of AIs in fictional films, series and books.

Today we are going to shift focus and explore how generative Artificial Intelligences can be used in the creation of art. While the idea of using technology to create art may seem baffling to some, there are actually many ways in which AI can help artists generate ideas, experiment with different approaches and enrich their final works.

In this post, we are going to look at how AIs can be used as tools to support the creative process for artists and content creators. If you are interested in finding out how Artificial Intelligences can help boost your creativity, keep reading!

Text generators

One of the best-known ways in which Artificial Intelligences can be used in the creation of art is through the use of generative language models. These models, such as OpenAI’s GPT-3, can generate text autonomously, following certain previously established instructions or language patterns.

Generative language models do this by using a technique known as “transfer learning”, in which they are fed large amounts of text and learn to mimic the style and way it is written. They can then use this to generate new text that follows the same pattern or style.

An example of a generative language model is ChatGPT, a model developed by OpenAI that was designed to simulate human conversations. ChatGPT has been used to generate dialogue in video games, chatbots and messaging applications.

Photo: Onur Binay / Unsplash

Another potential use for generative language models is in screenwriting and book writing. Fed with information about a specific topic or genre, these models could help writers generate ideas and structure their stories in a more efficient way. However, it is important to keep in mind that these models still have their limitations and cannot completely replace the creative work of a human writer.

Generative language models are a powerful tool that can help artists and creators generate ideas and experiment with different approaches in their work. Although they still have their limitations, their potential is enormous, and it is likely that we will see more and more uses of these AIs in the future.

Image generators

Another way in which Artificial Intelligences can be used in the creation of art is through the use of image generation models. These models, such as OpenAI’s DALL-E, are able to generate images from a textual description or a set of keywords.

The image generation models do this by using a technique similar to the transfer learning used by generative language models. They are fed large numbers of images and learn to imitate the style and way they are drawn. They can then use this to generate new images that follow the same pattern or style.

One example of an image generation model is Midjourney, developed by an independent company. Users can use Midjourney to create images from simple textual descriptions, such as “a cat sitting in a window”. This can be useful for artists and designers looking for inspiration or a quick way to generate sketches and concepts.

Photo: Chen / Unsplash

Another potential use for image generation models is in book illustration or in the creation of graphs and diagrams. Fed with information about a specific theme or style, these models could help illustrators generate ideas and create images that fit a specific theme more efficiently. However, it is important to keep in mind that these models still have their limitations and cannot completely replace the creative work of a human illustrator.

The Bestiary Chronicles

Chema Alonso describes in his blog the comic seriesThe Bestiary Chronicles” as an example of how generative AIs can be used in the creation of art. This series was created using MidJourney, an AI that allows artists to build the graphic style of a comic book one vignette at a time, similar to models such as Dalle-2 or Stable Diffusion.

Photo: Donovan Reeves / Unsplash

Stories from “The Bestiary Chronicles”, such as “The Lesson”, “Exodus” or “Summer Island”, have proven the potential of using generative AI as a tool for creating art.

  • In “Exodus”, a sci-fi odyssey is depicted that unfolds over 35 spectacular pages, all generated using MidJourney.
  • “Summer Island” is a folk horror story that follows a photojournalist on assignment in a remote Scottish village, where he discovers that the villagers are hiding a dark secret.
  • “The Lesson” is a dystopian story that follows the last remnants of humanity gathered in an underground location to learn about the monsters that have destroyed their planet.

While the use of generative AI in the creation of art can have many advantages, such as the ability to experiment with different approaches and styles more quickly and efficiently, there are also disadvantages to be considered.

AI models, for example, still have their limitations and cannot completely replace the creative work of a human artist. It is also important to keep in mind that the use of generative AI in the creation of art may raise ethical and copyright issues.

Conclusion…

In conclusion, generative Artificial Intelligences can be used as tools to support the creative process of artists and content creators in different ways, such as in the generation of text and images. Although they still have their limitations, these AIs have great potential, and we are likely to see more and more uses of them in the future.

It is important to note, however, that the use of generative AI in the creation of art can also raise ethical and copyright issues. Despite this, the use of generative AI can be an efficient and useful way to experiment with different approaches and styles in art and content creation.

…And ¡surprise!

This entire post has been written using ChatGPT and the images generated by Midjourney![1] This proves the great potential of generative AI as support tools in the creative process and how they can be used to create high quality content.

We hope you enjoyed reading this post and learned something about the use of generative AIs in the creation of art!

Author’s Note (human)

Let this little experiment serve, not as a mockery of the reader, but as a demonstration of the capabilities of the new AIs. While it is true that the text has been generated by ChatGPT, some human intelligence has had to be applied when making the requests (with several repetitions in some cases). Rather than replacing artists, this proves that knowing what to ask an AI to do may be a new skill for content creators to develop.


[1] The images generated by Midjourney could not be included in the post for copyright reasons. The images included are from an image bank and are intended to represent the meaning of the text.

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