Will AI replace our cameras and us photographers?
I keep seeing ads from Shutterstock in my Facebook feed. They claim, ” Create one-of-a-kind images in seconds”. The ads annoy me, so I think it’s fair to give them a try. Let’s take a look.
The site says that we can “imagine anything”. Type the text into the search bar and click Generate.
How about a fairly easy task. The claim is that Shutterstock AI generates a few versions to choose from.
Let’s ask for a photo studio, with some specifications to describe what should be there.
“Few” seems to be four. There were four images “generated”.
How did Shutterstock AI do?
I had asked for a photo studio with a neutral backdrop. All for images got that right. Give ’em four points.
I asked for a table with a laptop computer seen from the back.
The first image shows a laptop apparently from the front. The second image shows one from the back. Good. The third image has three computers and the fourth has two. One of the images got the instruction right. Three did not. Score it a one.
I requested an empty chair facing the camera beyond the table. In the first photo there is something overlapping the laptop. The second image shows the chair on the camera side. The third has something that might be a chair but it is not clear where it is. The last image has no chair. Sorry, no points for this.
The image was supposed to contain four studio lights. There are three in each image. Counting to four is not one of AI’s strengths apparently. No points for lights.
My specification had also included instructions for how the lights should be positioned. Two for portrait lighting, one on the backdrop and one facing the camera. Well, when you can’t get the count right, the positioning can’t be accurate either. Let’s not count this requirement.
The total score comes to five out of sixteen – 5 / 16 – or just 0.3 on a scale of four. Clearly nothing to brag about. At the present stage of AI, at least at Shutterstock, it cannot be considered useful. Certainly a long way from taking over.
.:. © 2023 Ludwig Keck
You are to be applauded for your patience..