The last three weeks I’ve been generating a lot of art with MidJourney after reading an article earlier this month about how someone in Colorado won an art competition by submitting a generated piece. When you see the caliber of art which AI algorithms like MidJourney are generating, it’s not hard to see why it won the competition: the results are strikingly good. So good that I wonder what AI is going to be doing this well next month, next year, or the next decade. We were told that creative disciplines like art and music were the last stations which artificial intelligence would take away from human creators. That is seeming like either a naive or short-sighted take at this point.

As of the last week of September 2022, I’ve generated a total of 233 images, which have consumed 3.6 hours of computational server time. The cost to me has been a paltry $10/month subscription fee. The way the algorithm works is you input a prompt and the machine outputs four images, which you can request iterations or upscaled versions of. As you interact with MidJourney more you realize that it becomes like a game, or a dice roll, where you are asked to input an imaginative prompt which the machine can meaningfully reflect upon. The results are very unpredictable; the output can range from underwhelming to incredible.

Here are some of the images I’ve generated so far.

Futuristic Chinese city
Sichuan Earthquake
Ninja Scroll in the Mist