Artificial or Intelligent?

I’m hosting a MIMA panel discussion on AI-generative tech and creativity February 16

Tim Brunelle
3 min readFeb 12, 2023
This will be terribly commonplace soon enough.

The video below: I asked ChatGPT to write a first-person script introducing me and my thoughts on creativity fueled by artificial intelligence. I ended up editing the final script from six different iterations it generated because I’m a control freak. Then I gave ElevenLabs a sample of my voice (40 seconds of me reading random material), and ChatGPT’s script and asked it to generate “me” — which is the voice you hear in the video. Then I uploaded a photo (with my mouth closed) to D-ID, along with ElevenLabs’ .MP3 audio file, and a few minutes later, downloaded Deepfake Me telling you all about “my” perspective on AI-enabled creativity. The entire process took $11, and maybe 25 minutes. h/t to Professor Ethan Mollick for his tutorial.

The impact is clear: AI-generative technology is the new printing press, the new desktop publishing, the iPhone — however you want to define tools which change the creative business forever.

Also very, very clear (to paraphrase my friend Greg Swan): AI isn’t going to replace you or your creativity tomorrow. But another creative human empowered by AI just might, and soon.

Yes, strategy and insights affect potent foundations for persuasion. Yes, talent matters. Yes, skill and craft create distinction and advantage in creative pursuits. But everyone who once eschewed computers now can’t live without one. Technologies have always usurped and evolved the realm of creativity. It’s only a matter of when you choose to engage.

This coming Thursday I’ll be moderating a discussion about all of the above with REM5 Studio’s Brian Skalak, everyone’s favorite tech lawyer Steve Helland, Sr. Director of Digital Strategy Anthony Englund from MSPC and Associate Creative Director Amanda Clark from Carmichael Lynch, at her agency.

Good luck getting the cat back in the bag. And why bother? The recent wave of generative technologies are energizing tired, status quo sectors of creativity.

First the good news: We are still quite early in the hype cycle. Even with Microsoft incorporating OpenAI into Bing, and Google announcing Bard, the vast majority of humans remain unaware and unconcerned. Which means there’s still time to experiment, to learn, to test and iterate. This cycle might move faster than social, and definitely faster than Web1, but remember — soon enough even grandma knew what a webpage was and how to access Facebook. We will be collectively engaging with generative technologies and finding it commonplace in the nearer future.

The key point isn’t to cower or reject but to leverage. As ChatGPT wrote for the video above, “AI can also be used to generate new and unique ideas and content based on data analysis and insights, especially ones which a human might not target due to bias or inexperience in a given industry or culture. This opens up new possibilities for creative expression and innovation.” Its words, not mine. But who would argue? If my strategic or creative or managerial output can become more relevant, more insightful, more persuasive — why wouldn’t I take advantage of the enabling technology?

To that point, here’s a very useful guide from the brilliant AI director Pinar Seyhan Demirdag on how to think about and benefit from generative AI in the creative process. As she puts it,

“while co-creating with A.I., novel doors of ideation have opened in my mind.”

Isn’t that the point?

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Tim Brunelle

I'm a creative enterprise leader, teacher, and entrepreneur living in Minneapolis.