Second Realm

Eric P. Rhodes, Artist

Embracing Potential: Exploring AI as a Powerful Tool for Artists


As artists and creators, we constantly seek new avenues for self-expression and innovation. Over the years, technology has played a significant role in shaping the art world, revolutionizing the way we create, share, and experience art. However, when it comes to AI, skepticism often arises. Many artists question whether AI can truly be a tool that enhances their creative process or if it is an entity that diminishes their role as artists. In this post, I’ll explore the world of AI and its potential as a transformative tool for artists. So, let’s set aside our doubts and explore the possibilities together.

AI as a Tool, Not an Entity:

Before we dive in, it’s crucial to clarify our understanding of AI. In the context of art, AI should be perceived as a tool rather than an independent entity with agency. When we talk about AI, we are not referring to Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), but rather really, really smart programs. By embracing this perspective, we can alleviate some of the fears associated with AI, which often stem from its portrayal in pop culture (think Terminator).

The Artist’s Craft

Throughout history, technology has continuously influenced the art world. The advent of the internet, blogging platforms, Photoshop, digital cameras, ebooks, and social media has revolutionized the creative process. However, amidst these transformative changes, it is crucial to acknowledge that the artist’s craft remains at the heart of art-making. Just as a tool does not define the artist, a basketball player is not solely defined by their shoes. It is the artist’s talent, skills, and effort that truly matter and shape the artistic outcome.

The Role of the Artist

While recognizing the innovative potential of AI-generated art, it is essential to emphasize that the true artist lies behind the AI. The one who wields the AI as a tool, shaping its output and infusing it with intention. Here, we can draw parallels to other tools like Photoshop or digital cameras; their mere usage does not inherently make one a photographer. Instead, it is the artist’s ability to utilize these tools intentionally to communicate emotionally resonant stories that defines their artistry.

Expanding Boundaries

It is important to approach AI with an open mind, viewing it as a new tool that can expand our artistic horizons and challenge traditional boundaries. Throughout my creative journey, I have personally explored various ways to use AI in my process. I’ve experimented with GAN and played with Generative Artwork.

As artists, we should not shy away from embracing the potential of AI as a powerful tool. By recognizing that AI is a tool wielded by human ingenuity, we can harness its transformative capabilities to expand our creative endeavors and push the boundaries of our craft. Let’s approach AI with an open mind and unlock the possibilities that lie at the intersection of art and technology.