AI Image Creation for Commercial Photography

Artificial intelligence is revolutionizing commercial photography. Using AI, we can now create images in minutes that once would have required hours of planning, setup, and post-production.

An AI portrait created in Midjourney. 

The use of AI in commercial photography has numerous benefits. The possibilities for making images based in any setting (including settings that would otherwise be technically impossible or impractical), with any lighting, and with a practically unlimited number of variations is a huge benefit.

All of this also translates into significantly a lower costs: there are no model- and location-related expenses. In addition, images created by AI have no copyright restrictions or model release requirements.

AI can be used to create images of normal home scenes without the need to hire models or find locations.

The AI tool I use most is Midjourney, which creates images using text prompts. It requires a monthly subscription fee, though a limited number of images can be made using a free trial.

With Midjourney, we can quickly generate multiple versions of an image, allowing experimentation with different visual styles and effects. This can be particularly useful in commercial photography, when we are looking for a specific mood and image style.

Output of four visually similar but distinct images. Prompt used in Midjourney: a-30-year-old-woman-looks-at-her-phone-in-the-kitchen-with-two-of-her-children-smiling-ambient-light-warm-tones-evening-summer-bokeh

As with any new technology, there are some downsides to using AI tools like Midjourney in commercial and advertising photography. One is the relatively small image output size: an upscaled image at the time of this writing is only 1344 pixels on its longest edge. This is sufficient for most online use, but nowhere near print quality. However, additional AI tools can be used to significantly improve resolution with minimal loss in quality, resulting in print-ready images of 4000 x 6000 pixels or better. And it’s only a matter of time before AI generators provide high-resolution print-ready images.

One of the more effective uses of AI is to create slightly ethereal yet still believable scenes

The other downside with AI photo creation tools is a relative lack of control over individual parameters. AI is great at providing usable images using a set of prompts, but if you already have a composition or finished image in mind, creating that exact image using AI tools can be maddeningly difficult. In these cases, setting up a traditional photo session may be more effective. However, I expect AI to soon address this gap and provide options for compositional inputs.

What used to take hours of Photoshop can now be done in seconds with AI

Do you find the AI image creation process intriguing but daunting? Or are you interested in AI-created commercial images for use in your business? I have much experience creating imagery for many different uses and in many different styles. Please contact me and we can chat about a suitable and affordable solution for your needs.