Description: A.I. is here to stay in photography.  The question is how can we make it our friend instead of our enemy?  I have some thoughts. 

AI is not only coming, it is already here to stay. You can’t negotiate with this fact. The amount of discussion about it is… um…. ‘Interesting’, but what’s happening isn’t new….  Really, it has happened to photography and the arts many times before.

It’s actually what’s called a ‘disruptive innovation’. It sure is disruptive! I can just hear the comments… but, but but, this is DIFFERENT! Said EVERY PERSON every time a disruptive technology came along.

Can you IMAGINE the first time a top-notch portrait painter saw a photograph?    You wanna talk about DISRUPTIVE! But what happened in the years after?   Did portrait painting disappear? Hardly. An entirely DIFFERENT way of painting happened, this little thing called the Impressionist Movement.

This is my personal view because I’m both a painter and a photographer and it is the worst kind of mistake to have them ‘compete’ against one another.  You have to let them be what they are.  And this applies to AI as well, because I really feel that once the initial shock of AI wears off, it will become a new art form that will be used BY artists and photographers instead of replacing them.

Rather than dropping into all the details of all the kinds of AI’s out there, I’m going to focus on the only thing that should matter to photographers…your creative ideas. THOSE are what distinguish you, and NO ONE or NOTHING can replace those. However, they can be IMITATED….  Just as every type of art has been imitated since the beginning of time.

Will there be career churn as this occurs, oh heck yeah!   We all know that there are types of photography that basically follow a ‘pattern’ with very little creativity.   These forms will struggle to continue I believe with the implementation of A.I.

The desire and need for unique moments of real people and places captured artistically will not go away. Really, I truly believe they will not. Look at history. It started with cave paintings and it’s moving to AI, but the subjects still endure!

I’m not saying this is going to be an easy time for artistic professionals, it will NOT. What I am saying is that I have a great deal of faith in the power of artistic creativity and I cannot WAIT to see what the AI innovations will spur in human creativity.

I’m here for the next “Impressionist Revolution” !

Check out Hayward’s YouTube post on this topic here