AI Photography and Snapshots (ARA)

2024.01.17 BLOG

(Translated from the original post on June 13, 2023.06.13 BLOG)

This is ARA.

Nowadays, not a day goes by without hearing about text-generating AI, as exemplified by ‘Chat GPT’. Even in the field of image creation, AI (Artificial Intelligence) technology seems to be spreading rapidly.

Many of you may have heard the news that an AI-generated photo won an international photography competition, and the author later declined to accept the award.

The work in question is titled ‘Pseudomnesia: The Electrician’ (link to Google search result). The depiction of the mysterious expressions on the faces of the two subjects, both supposedly electricians, coupled with the vintage style finish, makes it look like a picture that I think deserves high praise as a portrait "photograph".

But the future of snapshots like the ones we take with the GR is starting to worry me more than the news.

I think there are two aspects to snapshots: ‘documentation’ and ‘expression’.

The value of the former, which is more of a record, will not be lost even in the age of AI. Photographs that have meaning in terms of when, where, and what (who) is captured in them, especially commemorative photographs tied to private memories, should not be replaced by data generated by artificial intelligence.

What about photographs taken with the intention of ‘expression’?

For example, photographs that reflect the artist's creativity in the depiction of the subject's shape, shade, and color, or photographs that depict motifs such as momentary coincidences that cannot be reproduced in the real world, may be generated in large numbers by AI in the future, since the process allows for any number of "retakes".

To be honest, I have some psychological resistance to calling an image that does not contain the slightest bit of reality a photograph, but even so, innovation will never go backwards.

I will continue to pay attention to how the proliferation of AI, which is expected to accelerate even further, will affect the act of shooting/viewing photos for us real photography enthusiasts.

... And while I'm on the subject, don't the pictures in this issue look like AI photos?

Don't worry, I took them.

Shooting data: from top to bottom...
GR III, P mode, 1/320s, F8.0, ISO800, Vivid + In-camera RAW development, Cropped
GR IIIx, P mode, 1/125s, F3.5, ISO200, Cross Processing + iIn-camera RAW development, Cropped
GR III, P mode, 1/1250s, F8.0, ISO200, Positive Film + In-camera RAW development, Cropped


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