Artificial Intelligence for Graphic Design Illustrations, Yes or No?

  • by Lois Nur Fathiarini
  • January 05, 2023
  • 3 minutes read


In order to make an illustration or any design graphic project, usually a digital illustrator will use softwares that specifically used to graphic design such as Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator or any other drawing softwares. But how if we don’t have this specific skill to draw, but we want to create a unique illustration quickly and easier? Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) software is one of the solution. It’s highly controversial to use lately, especially in the art and design world, but let’s get to know about this AI software.

Text to Image AI Technology

AI technology is already widely implemented in various technology area; such as using robots, gadgets, camera, smartphones and various softwares. On digital art area, we can create a unique illustration by using Text to Image AI technology.

This technology can create a unique illustration based on keywords we input on the software. The system will look for relevant pictures based on those keywords and gather the database from various source on the internet, and then combine them into one unique picture.

AI Art Generators

source: Night Cafe

There are some AI art generators online and they are getting competitive such as Midjourney, Dall-E, Night Cafe, Stable Diffusion, Wonder and so on. Even big tech companies—namely Meta and Google—are in on it. Both have announced tools that will go beyond still imagery and make AI-generated videos, named Make-A-Video and Imagen Video, respectively.

One of Text-to-Image AI that is quite popular is Stable Diffusion. The project has an open source license, so anyone can get the source code on GitHub to use and develop it. Other than Text-to-Image, this technology also allows you to transform an abstract sketch input into a conceptual art or digital painting.

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That method is also called text-guided image-to-image translation and upscaling. What we don’t know for sure is where do these softwares get the components of a design or illustration? The results are surprisingly unique; it could be taking its components from a lot of drawing or painting samples from graphic design websites such as DeviantArt, Pinterest, and so on, and then process them one way or another so it creates a different output from the original input drawing. On some AI art generators, you can even upload your own image references to get another optional edits, such as when you are using Dall-E.

Digital Artists Controversy

source: Impakter.com

The presence of AI technology is currently in controversy, especially between digital artists and professional illustrators. In a positive way, it becomes easier for anyone to create a unique illustration work for various needs quickly.

In the other hands, professional illustrators and painters are still questioning about the copyrights for the works produced by AI softwares. AI softwares are taking their sources openly from the wide web, where artworks are widely spread. Sometimes you can still see other artists’ signature or watermarks on AI-produced-artworks. AI softwares are considered stealing artworks from artists who actually already spent enormous time to develop and create their artworks.

Of course we still can differ which artwork is produced by AI and which one is actually human-made. Obviously AI technology is always developing and machine learning will always be enhanced in line with the growth of technology. But one thing for sure is, digital drawing with a manual, human skill is always have a personal characteristic and has its own charm for the audience.

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Hello! My name is Lois, I live in Jogjakarta, Indonesia. I am a tattoo artist and I also love sewing and making needleworks. I also do watercolor painting and illustrations.

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