The idea behind “Youth is wasted on the young” was to celebrate the so called old, a comment on ageism if you want. A positive quiet homage to people who’ve seen more than us, been there, done that and I wanted their confidence and pride to be seen. I used fashion to show off their personalities, their attitude and inner rebels shining through the facade of age. I’m a professional photographer and interested in both styling and fashion, but these are not actual photos and the clothes are not real. Instead I’ve used computer software to create the scenes, the people and what they’re wearing. I give specific direction using words only to a program, lenses, angles, camera choice, color theme, colors, styling, backgrounds, attitude and overall look and the artificial intelligence goes to work, it sends back suggestions and more often than not it’s completely wrong, so I try other ways to describe what I’m after, change wording, move phrases around and try to get the AI to understand the mood. It’s frustrating mostly, the AI is still learning, but getting any collaborator to understand you can be difficult no matter if it’s a human or a machine.
After a long stretch of trial and error I get closer to a style and look I want and after that it comes down to curation, picking the renders I believe go well together, I start making it a series. To me the process is similar to that of a film director’s, I direct the AI the same way they would talk to an actor or set designer, it’s a process, we try over and over again until we get it right.
Should I get all the credit? God, no, the software creates with my help and direction, it’s a collaboration between a real brain and an artificial one. But it’s also just the first step, I use a number of other applications to finesse the first crude results I’m getting.
I've answered so many questions about this, but no matter how many times I said it was created using artificial intelligence, other people asked the exact same thing over and over again, so I've simply stopped. I’m not here to debate the process, I’m a professional photographer, writer and artist myself, I understand the implications, how this will affect many creative fields in the future. I’m simply using a tool available to me to tell stories, the same way I’ve always told stories – to move people. To me that is the point of this, not how I did it.
Dissecting something will almost always kill it.