Category Archives: Illustration

Some eye-popping AI/3D demos

Martin Evening combines Adobe Substance 3D modeler and Krea to go from 3D sketch to burning rubber:

Jon Finger combines a whole slew of tools for sketch->AR:

Throwback: “Packed with vectors, Physics Pak really satisfies”

I came across this post (originally from 2017) just now while looking for other work from Paul Asente. Here’s hoping it can finally see the light of day in Illustrator! —J.

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Paul Asente is an OG of the graphics world, having been responsible for (if I recall correctly) everything from Illustrator’s vector meshes & art brushes to variable-width strokes. Now he’s back with new Adobe illustration tech to drop some millefleurs science:

PhysicsPak automatically fills a shape with copies of elements, growing, stretching, and distorting them to fill the space. It uses a physics simulation to do this and to control the amount of distortion.

NewImage

[YouTube]

Drawing-based magic with Firefly & Magnific

Man, who knew that posting the tweet below would get me absolutely dragged by AI haters (“Worst. Dad. Ever.”) who briefly turned me into the Bean Dad of AI art? I should say more about that eye-opening experience, but for now, enjoy (unlike apparently thousands of others!) this innocuous mixing of AI & kid art:


Elsewhere, here’s a cool thread showing how even simple sketches can be interpreted in the style of 3D renderings via Magnific:

AI mashups of Star Wars x classic art

Check out Min Choi’s crossbreeding of Star Wars characters with iconic paintings (click tweet below to see the thread):

Here’s a look at his process (also a thread):

Infographic magic via Firefly?

Hey, I know what you know (or quite possibly less :-)), but this demo (which for some reason includes Shaq) looks pretty cool:

From the description:

Elevate your data storytelling with #ProjectInfographIt, a game-changing solution leveraging Adobe Firefly generative AI. Simplify the infographic creation process by instantly generating design elements tailored to your key messages and data. With intuitive features for color palettes, chart types, graphics, and animations, effortlessly transform complex insights into visually stunning infographics.

Magnific style transfer is amazing

It’s amazing to see what two people (?!) are able to do. Check out this video & the linked thread, as well as the tool itself.

I’m gonna have a ball going down this rabbit hole, especially for type:

Amazing: Realtime AI rendering of Photoshop

I cannot tell you how deeply I hope that the Photoshop team is paying attention to developments like this…

Celebrating “Subpar Parks”

During our recent road trip to Death Valley, my 15yo son rolled his eyes at nature’s majesty:

This made me chuckle & remember “Subpar Parks,” a visual celebration of the most dismissive reviews of our natural treasures. My wife & I have long decorated our workspaces with these unintentional gems, and I think you’ll dig the Insta feed & book (now complemented by “Subpar Planet“).

Krea upgrades its realtime generation

I had the pleasure of hanging out with these crazy-fast-moving guys last week, and I remain amazed at the speed of their shipping velocity. Check out the latest updates to their realtime canvas:

Check out how trailblazing artist Martin Nebelong is putting it to use:

Tutorial: Firefly + Character Animator

Helping discover Dave Werner & bring him into Adobe remains one of my favorite accomplishments at the company. He continues to do great work in designing characters as well as the tools that can bring them to life. Watch how he combines Firefly with Adobe Character Animator to create & animate a stylish tiger:

Adobe Firefly’s text to image feature lets you generate imaginative characters and assets with AI. But what if you want to turn them into animated characters with performance capture and control over elements like arm movements, pupils, talking, and more? In this tutorial, we’ll walk through the process of taking a static Adobe Firefly character and turning it into an animated puppet using Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator plus Character Animator.

Demos: Using Generative AI in Illustrator

If you’ve been sleeping on Text to Vector, check out this handful of quick how-to vids that’ll get you up to speed:

What if 3D were actually approachable?

That’s the promise of Adobe’s Project Neo—which you can sign up to test & use now! Check out the awesome sneak peek they presented at MAX:

Incorporating 3D elements into 2D designs (infographics, posters, logos or even websites) can be difficult to master, and often requires designers to learn new workflows or technical skills.

Project Neo enables designers to create 2D content by using 3D shapes without having to learn traditional 3D creation tools and methods. This technology leverages the best of 3D principles so designers can create 2D shapes with one, two or three-point perspectives easily and quickly. Designers using this technology are also able to collaborate with their stakeholders and make edits to mockups at the vector level so they can quickly make changes to projects.

Some great demos of Recolor Vectors

Veteran author Deke McClelland has posted a fun 1-minute tour of the new Recolor Vectors module:

And for a deeper dive, check out his 20-minute version:

Meanwhile my color-loving colleague Hep (who also manages the venerable color.adobe.com) joined me for a live stream on Discord last Friday. It’s fun to see her spin on how best to apply various color harmonies and other techniques, including to her own beautiful illustrations:

Check out Firefly’s new Recolor Vectors module

Our first new module has just arrived 🎉, so grab your SVGs & make a path (oh my God) to the site.

From the team post:

Vector recoloring in the Firefly beta now enables you to:

  • Enter detailed text descriptions to generate colors and color palette variations in seconds
  • Use a drop-down menu to generate different vector styles that fit your creative needs
  • Gain creative assistance and inspiration by quickly generating color options that bring your visions to life in an instant

As always, we’d love to hear what you think of the tools & what you’d like to see next!

Animated Drawings tech + Firefly = 🍬🌽🕺🏻

Meta Research has introduced Animated Drawings, “A Method for Automatically Animating Children’s Drawings of the Human Figure” (as their forthcoming paper is titled).

You can try it out via their Web interface, and/or take a bit more technical dive here:

I’m of course delighted to see folks starting to use it to bring their Adobe Firefly creations to life:

https://twitter.com/altryne/status/1646951739176767515?s=20

Demo: Creating cute characters in Adobe Firefly

Adobe prototyper Lee Brimelow has been happily distracting himself by creating delightful little creatures using Firefly, like this:

https://twitter.com/leebrimelow/status/1641228130030587905?s=20

Today he joined us for a live stream on Discord (below), sharing details about his explorations so far. He also shared a Google Doc that contains details, including a number of links you can click in order to kick off the creation process. Enjoy, and please let me know what kinds of things you’d like to see us cover in future sessions.

Animation: “Grand Canons”

Enjoy, if you will, this “visual symphony of everyday objects“:

A brush makes watercolors appear on a white sheet of paper. An everyday object takes shape, drawn with precision by an artist’s hand. Then two, then three, then four… Superimposed, condensed, multiplied, thousands of documentary drawings in successive series come to life on the screen, composing a veritable visual symphony of everyday objects. The accumulation, both fascinating and dizzying, takes us on a trip through time.

Kottke notes, “More of Biet’s work can be found on his website or on Instagram.”

Use Stable Diffusion ControlNet in Photoshop

Check out this integration of sketch-to-image tech—and if you have ideas/requests on how you’d like to see capabilities like these get more deeply integrated into Adobe tools, lay ’em on me!

Also, it’s not in Photoshop, but as it made me think of the Photo Restoration Neural Filter in PS, check out this use of ControlNet to revive an old family photo:

ControlNet is wild

This new capability in Stable Diffusion (think image-to-image, but far more powerful) produces some real magic. Check out what I got with some simple line art:

And check out this thread of awesome sauce:

Welcome to the meme-predicted future.

AI-made avatars for LinkedIn, Tinder, and more

As I say, another day, another specialized application of algorithmic fine-tuning. Per Vice:

For $19, a service called PhotoAI will use 12-20 of your mediocre, poorly-lit selfies to generate a batch of fake photos specially tailored to the style or platform of your choosing. The results speak to an AI trend that seems to regularly jump the shark: A “LinkedIn” package will generate photos of you wearing a suit or business attire…

…while the “Tinder” setting promises to make you “the best you’ve ever looked”—which apparently means making you into an algorithmically beefed-up dudebro with sunglasses. 

Meanwhile, the quality of generated faces continues to improve at a blistering pace:

Crowdsourced AI Snoop Doggs (is a real headline you can now read)

The Doggfather recently shared a picture of himself (rendered presumably via some Stable Diffusion/DreamBooth personalization instance)…

…thus inducing fans to reply with their own variations (click tweet above to see the thread). Among the many fun Snoop Doggs (or is it Snoops Dogg?), I’m partial to Cyberpunk…

…and Yodogg:

My Heritage introduces “AI Time Machine”

Another day, another special-purpose variant of AI image generation.

A couple of years ago, MyHeritage struck a chord with the world via Deep Nostalgia, an online app that could animate the faces of one’s long-lost ancestors. In reality it could animate just about any face in a photo, but I give them tons of credit for framing the tech in a really emotionally resonant way. It offered not a random capability, but rather a magical window into one’s roots.

Now the company is licensing tech from Astria, which itself builds on Stable Diffusion & Google Research’s DreamBooth paper. Check it out:

Interestingly (perhaps only to me), it’s been hard for MyHeritage to sustain the kind of buzz generated by Deep Nostalgia. They later introduced the much more ambitious DeepStory, which lets you literally put words in your ancestors’ mouths. That seems not to have bent the overall needle in awareness, at least in the way that the earlier offering did. Let’s see how portrait generation fares.

PetPortrait.ai promises bespoke images of animals

We’re at just the start of what I expect to be an explosion of hyper-specific offerings powered by AI.

For $24, PetPortrait.ai offers “40 high resolution, beautiful, one-of-a-kind portraits of your pets in a variety of styles.” They say it takes 4-6 hours and requires the following input:

  • ~10 portrait photos of their face
  • ~5 photos from different angles of their head and chest
  • ~5 full-body photos

It’ll be interesting to see what kind of traction this gets. The service Turn Me Royal offers more human-made offerings in a similar vein, and we delighted our son by commissioning this doge-as-Venetian-doge portrait (via an artist on Etsy) a couple of years ago:

Runway “Infinite Canvas” enables outpainting

I’ve tried it & it’s pretty slick. These guys are cooking with gas! (Also, how utterly insane would this have been to see even six months ago?! What a year, what a world.)

A fistful of generative imaging news

Man, I can’t keep up with this stuff—and that’s a great problem to have. Here are some interesting finds from just the last few days:

Wayback machine: When “AI” was “Adobe Illustrator”

Check out a fun historical find from Adobe evangelist Paul Trani:

https://twitter.com/paultrani/status/1581008882541133824?s=46&t=XjcRX5DdV1OKyzGKVimjTA

The video below shipped on VHS with the very first version of Adobe Illustrator. Adobe CEO & Illustrator developer John Warnock demonstrated the new product in a single one-hour take. He was certainly qualified, being one of the four developers whose names were listed on the splash screen!

How lucky it was for the world that a brilliant graphics engineer (John) married a graphic designer (Marva Warnock) who could provide constant input as this groundbreaking app took shape. 

If you’re interested in more of the app’s rich history, check out The Adobe Illustrator Story:

Demo: Generating an illustrated narrative with DreamBooth

The Corridor Crew has been banging on Stable Diffusion & Google’s new DreamBooth tech (see previous) that enables training the model to understand a specific concept—e.g. one person’s face. Here they’ve trained it using a few photos of team member Sam Gorski, then inserted him into various genres:

From there they trained up models for various guys at the shop, then created an illustrated fantasy narrative. Just totally incredible, and their sheer exuberance makes the making-of pretty entertaining: