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AI ART...is theft

they are not making art, they are making an art thief rich.

There is currently quite a fracas going on in the online art world. One that makes the NFT arguments that went on in 2020-2021 seem pretty damn civil. I assume you've been seeing this image (below) being shared and used as a profile pic recently.


Does everyone know what AI art is at this point? Can I just assume you've all see the arguments about it? Forbes magazine delved into it so I'd ASSUME it's on everyone's radar.  Maybe not? Here's what you'll wanna know/why artists are actually pissed.

There's "Artificial intelligence" art programs that people have started using where you basically type in some prompts/words and the program spits out an image based on those prompts. And depending on which program or how much time you wanna piss away, you can have it modify or redo parts or try again with different parameters. The program obviously isn't able to draw anything, what it is doing is making an art slurry- culling and merging and cobbling together an image from it's database of art that it has culled (stolen) from all across the internet into a database. It's does not see, it does not create, it is an algorithm.


If you've seen the rebuking of AIart, from artist, it's pretty viceral. Now, however  the world views me, I consider myself a comedian first and an illustrator second. However good I have become was by nessecity.  if a program came along that could make illustrations for my stories as well as I could, I'd be happy as a clam. The issue here is not that there's some new digital art tool.  Personally, I'm not concerned about some new tool, I've been using brush and ink and competing with digital art pretty much my entire career.  And I've come to really respect what digital artists are able to do, applying their talent and skill to digital tools. The issue here, presently, is THEFT.


The data base the program uses is full of pictures that NO ONE gave the programmers any rights to use. It's an algorithm that stole art from far and wide across the internet, to shove through it's AI image meat grinder...at the request of people who want to "make art".  I'll repeat that important part, the program has downloaded into itself millions of images that NO ONE gave it the right to use.  Without that stolen art, the program would be useless. It would be a car with no engine.

It's data base, which allows it to perform, is made of art it stole...copied down to the last pixel...every last zero and one, and added to it's coding.  This is nothing less than the largest art heist in human history.

Let's take a step back and show you the nuts and bolts of this thing. You go there and type in "prompts" (type the image or scene you want). You can type three words, you can type a paragraph...hit "enter" and it slurries out a picture, cobbled together from elements of images in it's (stolen) data base of art.


That pic of Cthulhu facing off against batman...the grand total of input that the person who "made" it had was to type in some words. The rest was a program meat grinder-ing other art pieces together.

Let me drive the point home of how this works, thanks to some asshole who had the balls to come right out and insert the name of an artist in his prompts

In this instance the program gave four choices...let's take a look at that Owl in the upper right.  It gave me a big case of deja vu. It gets tricky for me now to explain this, because some of you have a good understanding of art composition, implied lines, ect...and some of you may not. But this example is pretty stark so I trust you'll be able to get your head around the point.

Below on the right is Frank Frazetta art, on the left the "AIart"

See what I mean by "taking elements"?  It took the color pallet AND it took the composition...

A color pallet would be the specific combinations of tones, hues, ect. Color theory and creating a pallet that works is complex. It can be no less complex and specific than designing the wiring for an alternator.

As far as composition, that to is a skill that takes years to master...using swaths of color, implied lines, forms, to unify a piece and make it visually interesting.


  Scroll back up and give them both a look. That's what this program does...it takes forms, structure, color pallet, composition ect. from art pieces it stole and mapped out and then slurries them together with the same from other art, to meet the "prompts" given.

It's a complex bit of coding, no small feet of programing, but a Mercedes is just a garage ornament if it does not have an engine. And that's what these programmers had, a pretty car with no engine...so they stole an engine. Without the art they STOLE, and used in their coding, their program would not be able to do what it does.

...I'll explain it like this, you know what a kaleidoscope is? The child's toy, a tube with plastic shards in it, you shake it and look thought it as see the pattern the shards made, shake it again and see a new pattern.  This program without the stolen art is just the tube.

Stop romanticizing every time you hear something declared "AI". This is not a sci-fi movie, it is not conscious. It is lines of computer code that performs a task.  It takes in data and modifies what response it gives based on other data. If you give it more complex and different the data, it will give you a more complex and different response...I hate to break your heart but so does a calculator. 

If you type prompts, don't like the picture and then add or remove prompts and get a better picture, that is not the program learning anything. Much like with a kaleidoscope, if you only want a bright pattern so you remove all the blue and purple shards and add more red and yellow...that tube didn't "learn" anything, you adjusted what you were going to see when you looked through it.

Everyone please grow the fuck up. An "AI" program is not a character in a pixar movie, it is not the robot broad from Ex Machina, it is lines of code...in this case, lines of code made up of stolen art.

Excerpt here from an interview with one of the "men" behind this garbage


A big "scrape"...that's an interesting term for theft.

I have seen many wet ends try to rationalize this as not theft, because the pictures that come out are not copies, but "interpretations" much like  "human learns to do".  That is patently absurd and missing the point. The theft and copyright violation is not the picture it crapped out, it is the code in database it uses to crap it out.

(bold now for effect...ehem...)

This is a computer program, made of lines of code, that preforms a task. And in those lines of code are pieces of artwork it copied ( down to the last zero and one)...without paying the artists, asking for permission or giving them a choice (STOLE). and without that stolen artwork, it could not do what it does. It's code is made up of stolen works. IT ONLY FUNCTIONS BECAUSE OF THE STOLEN WORK IN IT'S CODE.

The fucking gall here is amazing. If you can't "automatically" figure out who something belongs to, you can just take it? Is that how it works? So ,I can just go out and start taking things, because I can't instantly know who they belong to? No...of Couse not. I could not just take your laptop and charge other people money to use it. If that art exists, someone made it, and the rights to it belongs to them.

The "rules" (LAWS) are pretty clear actually. The "challenge" of figuring out who something belongs to IS STEP ONE, BEFORE YOU TAKE IT. 

No way to "opt out" "right now"...but they're gonna get right on that. LOL. And let's just absorb that notion of "being able to opt out". Do you have to "opt out" of me stealing your laptop? Can I just take your laptop unless you email me that you are "opting out" of my theft? Give me a fucking break.

That is not how the law works, if someone owns something, it does not become yours unless they willingly give it to you. That goes for your laptop, a patent, or copyrighted work.

I'm going to make sure we are all crystal clear on something here...because I have seen many mopes who ( I shit you not) who have declared themselves "artists" after using this ( I am not making that up...people after typing words into this program and getting a picture, have declared to the world that they are artists) and they say  "what's the difference between what it is doing and someone using pictures for reference to learn art?".

Well, first off it is not human...much like their fleshlights are not human. Something that is not alive, is not alive, no matter how much they want to believe it is. but we'll get past that.

 1-it is not learning anything, If you type prompts, don't like the picture and add or remove prompts and get a better picture, that is not the program learning anything. That is you helping code it...for free.

 2-When someone uses a picture of say...a truck...for reference it is being interpreted by their wonderful yet flawed brain. And their best picture of it is still an interpretation.  This program copies, exactly, down to the last pixel, last 0 and 1 of code, and uses it to function. Copies as in duplicates...function as in performs it's task via that code for numerous individuals (publishes, distributes, profits).  It does not matter what it spits out after the prompts someone types, it has still copied the art to function.

 These programs are made of stolen work/code.

You musicians, comedians, actors and actresses...it's in your best interest to help push back on this. Artists are usually not wired, don't have the skillset, to verbalize a defense that will connect with people...not the way you can. Help now, because YOU are next.

A program will come along (if it's not being completed already) that will capture your rhythm, timing, tone, style of writing...copy your expressions and paste a cgi skin on them. Break down the unique fluctuations of your voice and when and why you do so and map it into a wav file tool box that a different voice can ride on top of... just like that, your style is at the disposal of anyone who has not learned one single thing about the craft that you have worked to master. Maybe on a commercial, a voice over, a video game...and you won't get a single dime.

There's even more nefarious uses for what these programs are being developed, to do, thanks in large part to dopes who want to "make art" but are actually, en mass, providing millions of dollars of free R&D, but I'll get into that some other time...the theft in and of itself is enough to address for now.

 I'll leave you with this. I know many digital artists who are ACTUALLY on the cutting edge and working on in ACTUAL news medium. And they are using more talent and skill than typing words into a prompt box.  I'll give you an example right now, of what is ACTUALLY the frontier (click on pic below)

Reinhard Schmid

In case you're wondering, I haven't checked to see how much of my work is such data bases. I'll get to that after a class action lawsuit is filed . #protip that'd be an effective way to stop this, because an art theif raking in millions of dollars probably isn't going to gaf if we call him a p.o.s. online.



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