Blending HI with AI

by | Jun 11, 2024 | Hemisphere, Whakaaro

We love staying on the cutting edge. So naturally, Generative AI is now part of how we operate. However, we’ve noticed an increasing concern in Aotearoa around the use of AI in image generation.

AI isn’t the first tool to be questioned in the world of creativity (and we’ve previously acknowledged its limitations). Every photographer we work with uses photo editing software to craft that perfect image. It’s the accepted norm.

At Hemisphere, we get that AI is changing the game. It’s as much a part of our business as image libraries, Adobe tools, spellcheckers, Office365… we could go on. AI is a tool that needs to be handled by seriously skilled creatives — no change there then.

AI: It’s a tool

AI Image Generation is a tool to support creative development. It isn’t a path to great and innovative creative – that takes the imagination, skills and cultural experiences of real humans. We call this HI. Human Intervention. No tool can do the best work without this.

We think about an AI generated image in the same way we think about every image. It’s the starting point for the final image. Rarely, if ever, the finished product. Whether it’s an exhaustive search across multiple photo libraries or some carefully finessed prompts, HI is where the magic really happens.

AI needs HI

In a recent campaign aimed at active recreationalists, we set out to showcase some activities in the great outdoors. Only issue? There wasn’t the budget for a multi-location, multi-talent shoot. So, what did we do?

  • Find a base image we could work with
  • Add the detail needed, in this case, aquatic plants, calmer water, reflections, etc
  • Recolour the talent’s clothes
  • Layer on additional elements appropriate to the campaign.

The ultimate makeover! Whether it’s an AI image or a library image, our process is the same. We find a great starting point and then we work our studio magic. At the end of the day, the goal is creative that’s perfect for the campaign. And it takes HI to get to this point.

AI is just one tool to bring our creative vision to life. It needs to be checked for accuracy and then made fit for purpose. The Suzuki Hybrid Family are based on AI generated characters, tweaked, merged, and manipulated with a healthy dose of HI to tell the story we needed.

AI, why?

So why bother with AI? Isn’t HI all we need? When we need a base image, and the right stock image isn’t out there — AI. When a photoshoot isn’t possible due to budget, timeline, or brief — AI. AI is a game changer when deadlines are pressing, and a workable solution isn’t out there.

Hemisphere rides the technology wave. We start testing tools as soon as they are available. We don’t introduce them to our product suite until we’re confident they can add value. And even then, it’s with a huge sprinkling of HI.

Whether we’re using AI + HI or just good ol’ human creativity, we always strive for perfection. The next time you give us a brief, leave AI in the mix. It might just deliver the campaign you’re looking for. Once the HI is added in.