MacDirectory Magazine

Ingo Lindmeier

MacDirectory magazine is the premiere creative lifestyle magazine for Apple enthusiasts featuring interviews, in-depth tech reviews, Apple news, insights, latest Apple patents, apps, market analysis, entertainment and more.

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Page 87 of 193

Continuing with the volcano theme, I decided to create a companion object of the neighboring Volcán de Fuego, or “Fire Volcano,” which is constantly active and erupting. Fire made me think of matches, and I prompted the AI to generate images of volcano-shaped matchstick holders. The results weren’t great. But they were good enough to help me imagine a small cast-iron object that could hold some stormproof matches, which I chose because when placed on the holder, they evoked a lava-filled eruption. To me, the tissue box and matchbox holder are perfect homages to Antigua and all the memories this place holds for me, good and bad. The fire volcano matchstick holder conveys excitement and adventure, while the tissue box evokes tears, longing and nostalgia. Even though I made all of the design choices, the AI generator helped me navigate my abstract design goals. It’s hard to say if I would have landed on these prototypes on my own. Opening new creative doors AI technology is not going away anytime soon. As an educator, I believe it would be irresponsible to not explore, with my students, the ways in which it can improve the design process. In the fall semester of the 2022-2023 academic year, I had my graduate students at the Rochester Institute of Technology use AI image generation to develop their own products. The results were impressive, with students creating an electric violin, a chair inspired by fruit and shoes made out of fungus. They all used AI in a different way, but they all noted how it led them down an unexpected path. When I read alarmist articles about this new technology, I’ll sometimes think back to the early days of 3D modeling systems and how some people thought they would replace designers and artists. Those fears were ultimately dispelled, and designers never went back to the large blueprints and drafting boards of old. Just as Google can make it easier for a journalist to conduct research for an article or find someone to interview, I believe AI can serve as a valuable wellspring of inspiration in the designer’s toolbox.

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