AI and Creativity: is it the future?
With a title such as “The Robots are Coming: the Creative AI Conference”, I knew our Technical Director Kasper Kuijpers had to be a speaker.
His passion and expertise in generative AI and its creative uses is highly sought after, and with such a long-term interest in this area Kasper truly has a lot of experience to share.
So Kasper himself, Sunniva Ottestad, a Producer and I, Marketing Manager, jumped on the Eurostar and glided into London St. Pancras.
In this summary I’ll be sharing insights and learnings from the event, perfect for any creative business (or otherwise) who are uncertain about how AI will impact them and how to integrate it into the business effectively. Plus, I’ve collated five easy ways to start your AI journey this week.
Are the robots actually coming?
The event itself brought together agency leaders to discuss how generative AI was affecting creativity, client work and general agency life. Many of the attendees were grappling with this rapidly evolving tech* and were looking to experts to find out how to get to grips with it.
*It’s likely by the time you read this there will have been even more new AI announcements.
Throughout the afternoon, attendees furiously scribbled down notes off the back of inspiring presentations from content, video and production and digital design agencies, including Your Majesty.
We heard how they were using generative AI in their creative processes and also, importantly, optimism about the opportunities available.
So yes, whilst the robots are coming, we can use them to our advantage. Read on for the main takeaways.
Yes, the robots are coming: takeaways from the event
1. AI tools present an opportunity to change how we work
Now is the time to get involved with generative AI and start integrating it into your business.
There are plenty of opportunities to use AI tools into your every-day work life. Integrating these new tools into your business can help you stand out against competition, develop pitches and support client work.
Ideas include, saving time when it comes to menial tasks and ideation and creativity.
2. Embrace AI for ideation
AI tools are great for sparking new ideas and finding unexpected creative directions.
Think of it as a ‘wild card’ in your creative process. The outputs from tools such as Dream Studio or Midjourney can take you down unexpected creative routes and unearth new directions. Alternatively, ChatGPT can give you new insights about a theme you’re interested in.
The technology also improves the fidelity of creative exploration. Generate 100s of high-fidelity ideas that are 80% complete to help reach the final, finished product compared to low fidelity paper-base sketches. This can help the client more easily see the vision for the creative output.
Whilst the AI tools play a role in the creative process, human input is essential to refine and create the final assets or campaign.
3. A new skillset is required
The skills required to get the best results out of gen-AI tools are new and even the experts are always learning something.
Crafting prompts and understanding how to tweak them to get the best result is a learning curve. On tools like Midjourney you generate in a public discord meaning you can see and be inspired by other people's work.
Beyond this, mastering the open source tools you can train and build on yourself, such as Stable Diffusion and Alpaca, offers up a competitive edge and the ability to create more bespoke creative outputs.
One speaker, Vincent Sider, runs training courses helping businesses everywhere put AI skills to good use. Alternatively, his directory ‘AI Radar’ helps you navigate the exponential number of tools available and find the right tool for the job.
Those with a lot of creative experience can find it easier to write prompts with accurate results, but ‘AI Whisperers’ and ‘Prompt Engineers’ are very likely the roles of the future. Our Producer, Sunniva, is actively testing and learning herself, with great results.
4. Watch out for regulation
We have to stay on top of the latest developments in regulation, rules and laws around AI tools in our country.
The week of the event, Google launched their AI integration, Midjourney 5.0 and Chat GPT 4.0 was released - the industry is growing exponentially. With that comes regular updates to the rules and regulations around how you can use these tools for business.
It’s essential that organisations and businesses using these tools understand what they can and can’t do. Interestingly every country has its own copyright laws, so this can vary internationally too.
Useful to know
There are two types of output to be aware of. Latent content relies on close approximations to the data set (actual people, photos, art for example) which does pose a higher risk of copyright infringement.
Transformative content is combining elements of the data to create new, novel outputs (think of a remix or collage) which has historically been clear from any copyright issues.
5. Get your team on board
Empower and encourage your team to try out the tools, integrate them into their work and give them time to learn.
The internet has been scaremongering people for years, ‘AI is taking our jobs’. Sure, technology regularly disrupts industries, but on the flip side, new roles will be created, for example the aforementioned ‘Prompt Engineer'.
Giving your team the opportunity to learn about the tools is essential. If they understand how to integrate AI tools into their daily work they’re more likely to feel excited and empowered.
An internal task force of those who are early adopters and excited by the tech could help explore the possibilities for your business and even help others get involved.
If you’re not sure where to start, a workshop with a more experienced organisation, such as Your Majesty, can help. We did exactly that with Armada Music, who were keen to integrate AI into their creative process, and looked to us to guide them.
AI tools present an opportunity: Now is the time to get involved with generative AI and start integrating it into your business.
Embrace AI for ideation: AI tools are great for sparking new ideas and finding unexpected creative directions.
A new skill set is required: The skills required to get the best results out of gen-AI tools are new and even the experts are always learning something.
Watch out for regulation: We have to stay on top of the latest developments in regulation, rules and laws around AI tools in our country.
Get your team on board: Empower and encourage your team to try out the tools, integrate them into their work and give them time to learn.
Get started on your AI journey
With so many options, tools and ideas available out there, we’ve curated the five best ways you can get started, this week.
Start creating prompts and imagery via Midjourney, Dreamstudio or Dall-E. Have a look at this (‘dated’ but still relevant) prompt guide from summer last year.
Non-designer favourite, Canva, has AI tools integrated already in the platform, try ‘Magic Write’ or ‘Text to Image’ to generate words and images directly into your design.
Use ChatGPT to research new topics and ideas.
Look at clipdrop.co for easy in-browser editing and fine tuning.
For people who want to stay on top of the pulse and might be more technically inclined, join these Discords: Stability.ai, Deforum (look out for Automatic1111 WebUI), Runway, EleutherAI (nerds only).
Say up to date on all the developments
We cover this rapid moving space in our bi-weekly newsletter 10 Things. Sign up here, to receive the latest strategy, design, technology and AI articles straight to your inbox.
Looking for something more specific?
AI tools and technologies are developing at breakneck speed and it can be hard to keep up. As a firm that has been there from the start, we can help you filter out the noise and distil strategies that make sense for your company’s unique situation.
Read more insights from our curious team:
ARMADA Music —Inspiring creativity for generative AI music marketing.
Gold Rush in the Uncanny Valley - an exploration into the development of generative art and why now you should be taking it seriously.
Five strategic prompts to consider in 2023 - a recap of five strategic themes we learned during our research effort for fashion-tech clients in 2022.