AI and Creativity: Will Human Originality Continue to Matter?

Sabrina Habib, MFA, Ph.D.
5 min readDec 21, 2022
Image created by Dall-E 2

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been a topic of much discussion and speculation in recent years, with many wondering about its potential effects on various aspects of society and human life. Following a variety of software for Ai — Mid journey AI, Dall-e 2, Audio Ai, and many others, most recently, the launch of Chat GPT made these discussions more salient and mainstream.

One area of particular concern is the impact of AI on creativity. It is easy to assume that the rigorous, logical nature of AI is incompatible with the free-flowing, unpredictable nature of creativity. However, recent developments have begun to challenge this assumption, as AI becomes more prevalent. There is a potential that it will diminish the role of human creativity in various fields, but also it could potentially enhance and augment human creativity in others.

Creativity is not only important for new ideas and problem-solving, it’s also essential for personal and social growth. In general, creativity is defined as the ability to generate novel and valuable ideas, products, or solutions to problems. Creativity is a complex and multifaceted concept that has been studied in a variety of fields, including business, psychology, neuroscience, and education. Overall, creative thinking is a valuable skill that can help individuals overcome obstacles and find solutions to a wide range of problems. Until now, this skill has only been associated with a uniquely human characteristic.

Because AI algorithms can analyze large amounts of data and identify patterns that might not be apparent to humans — and at a great speed — it has the potential to revolutionize most disciplines. A study forecasted that many new jobs will be created by the advent of machine learning technology (AI). These jobs will consist of humans complementing tasks performed by AI to ensure that the work is effective and ethical. Will these jobs also become ubiquitous in creative fields, creating an ongoing collaboration between humans and machines?

Overall, research suggests that AI has the potential to support and enhance creativity in a variety of contexts by providing new tools and resources. For example, AI algorithms could be used to generate new concepts or to help creatives better understand and analyze their own work. There is also the potential for AI to facilitate collaboration, which could lead to new and innovative ideas.

However, there are also potential negative impacts of AI on creativity that must be considered. One concern is that the increasing reliance on AI could lead to a homogenization of ideas and artistic expression, as AI algorithms may tend to favor certain styles or approaches over others. This could lead to a lack of diversity and originality, as AI algorithms may be more likely to generate similar works due to the data sets they have been fed.

Additionally, there is the concern that the increasing use of AI could lead to a decrease in the value and appreciation of human-generated creative ideas. If AI algorithms can produce high-quality work at a faster and more efficient rate, it is possible that there may be less demand for human-generated work, leading to a decrease in the value of such work. This could have negative impacts on the livelihoods of many professionals, as they may struggle to compete with the efficiency and output of AI algorithms.

Another concern is that AI algorithms may be able to generate creative works that are similar or identical to human-generated works, and it may be difficult to determine who holds the copyright to such works. Additionally, AI algorithms may be able to modify or manipulate existing works in ways that are not authorized by the copyright holders, which could raise issues of copyright infringement. It is worth noting that the laws governing copyright vary by country.

Since AI has the potential to support creativity, it could potentially compress hours of work, thus, freeing up human workers to be more productive. For example, a study published in The Journal of Design, Economics, and Innovation (2020) found that AI algorithms could be used to automate the creation of basic design elements, such as logos and graphic elements. Although human-created designs outperformed the machine-created ones, artificial intelligence logos may suffice when there is a clear design vision.

If humans use AI and work at a much greater speed, one designer can handle more jobs, eliminating the need for a larger team of designers. That could have serious implications for the future of design jobs and accessibility of learning design if fewer experts are trained and available to pass on knowledge. These issues will need to be carefully considered as the use of AI in creative industries continues to grow.

It is difficult to predict exactly how AI will impact creative industries, as it will likely vary depending on the specific field. Regardless, AI has the potential to both enhance and disrupt the work of professionals in creative industries. Still, it is important to note that AI is still limited in its ability to truly replicate human creativity. As such, it is unlikely that AI will be able to fully replace humans, as it lacks the same level of nuance and understanding of human emotions and experiences.

AI can support and enhance the work of creative professionals in the advertising industry. AI algorithms can be trained to recognize and analyze consumer behavior, helping to create more effective and targeted advertising campaigns. For example, AI is already being used to identify the types of ads that are likely to be most effective for a particular audience, to determine the best time and place to run an advertising campaign, and to write headlines.

On the one hand, the increasing capabilities of AI algorithms could lead to competition with human workers. The use of AI could lead to a more standardized approach to creativity, possibly stifling the development of new and unique ideas. Because creativity needs context and expression, AI is more likely to become an important tool than a replacement to creativity.

On the other hand, AI algorithms can be used to suggest new ideas or helping to identify potential areas for innovation. For example, the ideas, structure, knowledge, and citations in this article belong to the author, but some sentences — about 60% of the words you just read were written with the help of Openai Chat GTP. The chatbot enhanced ideas and sped up the writing process, but the author’s expertise was needed to come up with the concept, vet claims, and tie concepts together. Multiple prompts were needed to choose the best answers that fit the author’s goals for this article. Overall, the impact of AI on creative industries is likely to be complex and varied, but I believe human expertise will be required for self-expression, thought, truth, ethics, and originality.

AI algorithms are only as creative as the humans who design and train them. While AI may be able to generate new ideas or content based on patterns and trends that it has learned from existing data, it does not have the ability to truly understand or appreciate the nuances of human creativity. As such, human creativity will likely continue to play a crucial role in the creation of innovative and meaningful works of art and expression

--

--

Sabrina Habib, MFA, Ph.D.

I am a researcher with a background in creative advertising, branding, and visual communications.