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Warning: Ditch your camera - all you need is a keyboard!!!

Note; This article is for information and discussion of possibilities. Current rules forbid the use of AI-edited images and text-to-image generated content. These rules are being formulated as this technology evolves so be sure you are following the latest rule for the competition you enter.


Adobe Firefly is a new AI image generator that was announced in March 2023. It is still in beta, but it has the potential to revolutionise the ways possible to create and use images.

Firefly uses artificial intelligence to generate images from text descriptions. This means that you can simply type in a description of the image you want, and Firefly will create it for you. For example, you could type in "a beautiful sunset over the ocean," and Firefly would create an image of a stunning sunset over the ocean.

Firefly is not just limited to creating realistic images. It can also create abstract, surreal, and even cartoon-like images. This means that you can use Firefly to create any type of image you can imagine.

AI - Logo creation
AI - Logo creation

Firefly is still in beta, but it is already clear that it has the potential to change the way people (NOT Photographers) create and use images. It is a powerful tool that can be used by anyone, from professional artists to casual users. This example created a logo for the club simply using the trigger words “Old Cameras" Here are some of the benefits of using Adobe Firefly:

  • Create images from text descriptions: Firefly can generate images from text descriptions, which means that you can simply type in what you want the image to look like and Firefly will create it for you. This is a great way to save time and effort, and it also allows you to create more creative and original images.

  • Control the style and appearance of your images: Firefly allows you to control the style and appearance of your images. You can choose from a variety of styles, including realistic, abstract, and surreal. You can also adjust the colour, lighting, and composition of your images. This gives you a lot of creative control over the final product.

  • Use Firefly with other Adobe apps: Firefly is integrated with other Adobe apps, such as Photoshop and Illustrator. This means that you can use Firefly to create images that you can then edit and refine in other Adobe apps. This gives you a lot of flexibility and control over the final product.

Here are some other examples I created …..

Butterfly on Cornish monument
Butterfly on Cornish monument

These are a little “graphic in style” - they are, fairly clearly, not photographs but they are ORIGINAL images generated from four words. If you are fed up spending hours waiting for the Chough to come home from a night on the tiles? Firefly has your back …...

Chough hiding in the bracken
Chough hiding in the bracken

You would be hard-pressed to guess any one of those was not a photograph. Firefly has a filter for some words so it cannot be asked to generate rude content. As if! For some reason “Pixie” is one such banned word but “Fairy” is not so …...

Final example ..... for now!
Final example ..... for now!

My first try “fairy hiding in the bracken”, following on from the Chough, was a bit cartoonish so I added “Photorealistic” and achieve the above in about 10 seconds. 75% usable images (not keen on the last one) BOOM! Clearly, images created from simple text are not photographs and therefore cannot be entered into our competitions but where is the line to be drawn? Photoshop now has some VERY powerful sliders where objects can be removed, added, changed, sharpened, de-noised (can I say that?) colourised and changed almost beyond recognition of the original. Topaz Sharpen, Denoise, Gigapixel (resolution increase) and Photo AI (overall improvement) all use sliders and options so are “allowed” under current rules as they are not one-button changes. I am sure the CPA the WCPF and higher authorities are wrestling with this question. We are one of the few clubs to have an out-of-camera section - perhaps that is the way forward? What are your thoughts on Ditch your camera? Researched by Paul

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