It’s March Madness szn a/k/a the time of year Jen becomes a sportsball expert not because of any specialized knowledge or interest but mostly because brackets are fun and I’m competitive.
This coincides with the release of Midjourney v.5 which…I’m not loving because it’s a little too hyperrealistic.
That means I need to get better at prompting, not be mad at Midjourney for evolving.
It’s been interesting to watch how people respond to Midjourney updates.
Like…let’s pretend you just art the old school way using paint and canvas and scissors and glue and stuff. You could happily art away undisturbed for all of eternity without ever having to learn something new – those tools don’t change.
You could choose to learn new techniques or media but you’re not forced to.
This isn’t the case when you’re creating work using a tool in which continuous evolution is the primary feature.
Getting mad at AI for being AI and doing unexpected things that make it harder for you to art is a little silly, yeah? That’s literally what AI’s meant to do…not to intentionally make things harder for you but for it to learn and grow and evolve. Every time you feed AI information it learns from what you’re doing and soaks up that knowledge and redistributes it.
This learning process is one of the things about AI that terrifies me which is why I try to use it for good. I don’t go looking for violence or scary things although sometimes they find me anyway.
I try to teach Midjourney that monsters don’t have to be scary creatures. Does it listen?
Maybe…a lot of the time my monsters are sleepy. Especially on Monday mornings when I’m faced with returning to the cubicle farm after a weekend of arting.
Why do street sweepers exist? We send these machines out to rinse and scour our roads for what reason exactly? Roads are dirty and the roads which are scrubbed are just as dirty as the ones that are not. Why do we need sparkly clean streets, anyway? We really just need to be able to drive on them, we don’t need them to glisten in the sunshine.
It strikes me that so many of the solutions proposed to combating climate change are pushed onto us as an individual responsibility which, sure, let’s do what we can…but shit like street sweepers drives me bonkers because we don’t need them and yet there they are endlessly roving and using water and energy in a battle they will never win.
Why is it always on us to fix problems we didn’t create and can’t change on any meaningful level?
Capitalism and bloated government, that’s why.
(nihilistic Jen is in full force these days)
(Please don’t write me another essay about all the helpful things street sweepers do and tell me to google their benefits, I was kinda being silly here.)
This week I’ve figured out it’s much easier to come up with ideas for dailies during the day and do the collage work at night. Until this point I’d been doing the reverse and frantically trying to finish collages before I left for work in the morning which wasn’t working very well.
I noticed that most of the time these collages bubble up out of whatever goes on during my day or conversations I’ve had or nonsense I’ve read on the interwebs. So now I’m popping into Midjourney to generate images whenever an idea lands in my brain — it gives me something to look forward to working on when I get home.
Wing man might be my favorite work in this collection so far.
But let’s talk about this next one which I STILL hate.
It started out here:
I popped it up on Twitter with my usual GM and said I didn’t like it but didn’t feel like reworking it.
What is this you don’t feel like fixing it?!? there’s no being lazy in artworld OMG betch
And so I forced myself to play with it a bit more and turned it into something I was happier with but still not completely happy with.
You’re not gonna be happy with every piece of art you create. They can’t all be amazing. Making shitty work is just part of the process of getting to the good stuff buried beneath layers of brain gunk.
But pushing myself to keep going just a little bit further when I wanted to be lazy…that was THE thing. Art is like 85% a mental game and any day you can outwit inertia is a good one.
I like some things about this next one, but not everything. The idea was good, the glitchy forest is lovely, but I could have executed the story better.
Now that I’m looking at it I might like it better if the bear were a different color but I have about ten million irons in the fire at the moment so I don’t have time to keep playing and besides it’s already minted so it’s a done deal.
I’ve been doing a free open edition piece for my birthday every year since I landed in NFTs kind of like offering a bribe to people for putting up with me 😜
Obsessed with #spidertok. I don’t know whether it’s how freaking adorbs the spiders are or the cute lil habitats people construct for them or how wholesome it is or what but it’s the cutest damn thing.
Mel Hearts made me an adorbs rainbow tarantula to celebrate my cake day and I love her so much:
Maria Verde sent me a lovely poem, one I truly appreciated when she shared it on IG along with the story of her creative journey.
We rarely know where our creative adventures are going to take us. The only way to find out is to show up and do the work and learn and grow. I love that Maria was willing to share her story because we can all learn from each other and grow together ❤️
Rainbowie sent me a lovely sparkler!
Love everything about this, artists spend a lot of time trying to find their way around in the dark and often the way through is just…finding a light source whether that’s a new tool or source of inspiration or stubbornly refusing to sit in the dark any longer. After a week of grey rainy weather that left me feeling dull and uninspired, this is a nice reminder that rain can be lovely too.
Next week I’m trying something different and have asked artists to send me images they’ve created in Midjourney.
No idea if I’ll get any images or if I do what they’ll look like or…anything. I love the idea of letting this process be completely random and subject to the whims of other people’s creativity!
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