There has been concern around how AI could take away jobs from regular people in the coming years, but real humans in real jobs are already feeling the impact of AI in their careers.
A 3D artist in a small games company has said that photo generation platform Midjourney has all but taken away his job. In a now-viral Reddit post, the employee says that he used to spend weeks doing the work that the AI now does in days. He says all he’s left to do is write prompts and fix the AI’s work, which has taken away all the creative pleasure he used to derive from the job. He says he’s “between grief and anger” at the new developments. Here’s the post in its entirety.
I am employed as a 3D artist in a small games company of 10 people. Our Art team is 2 people, we make 3D models, just to render them and get 2D sprites for the engine, which are more easy to handle than 3D. We are making mobile games.
My Job is different now since Midjourney v5 came out last week. I am not an artist anymore, nor a 3D artist. Rn all I do is prompting, photoshopping and implementing good looking pictures. The reason I went to be a 3D artist in the first place is gone. I wanted to create form In 3D space, sculpt, create. With my own creativity. With my own hands.
It came over night for me. I had no choice. And my boss also had no choice. I am now able to create, rig and animate a character thats spit out from MJ in 2-3 days. Before, it took us several weeks in 3D. The difference is: I care, he does not. For my boss its just a huge time/money saver.
I don’t want to make “art” that is the result of scraped internet content, from artists, that were not asked. However its hard to see, results are better than my work.
I am angry. My 3D colleague is completely fine with it. He promps all day, shows and gets praise. The thing is, we both were not at the same level, quality-wise. My work was always a tad better, in shape and texture, rendering… I always was very sure I wouldn’t loose my job, because I produce slightly better quality. This advantage is gone, and so is my hope for using my own creative energy to create.
Getting a job in the game industry is already hard. But leaving a company and a nice team, because AI took my job feels very dystopian. I doubt it would be better in a different company also. I am between grief and anger. And I am sorry for using your Art, fellow artists.
It’s a pretty unique problem, but might become more common in the coming years. The person hasn’t actually lost his job — he still gets paid as much as he used to. Yet the creative aspect of his work has been taken over by AI, which he admits is quicker and better than he is. And this causes him consternation, and makes him believe he’s been “replaced” by technology. It’s all very well for humanity to go all guns blazing on AI research, but the same researchers would do well to keep in mind what the downstream effects of such a technology might be in the decades to come.