AI Graphic Design Vs. Working With Designers: The Future of Graphic Design
Entrepreneurs and marketers around the world are constantly looking for designs. Designs that convey their brands’ messages. Designs that help connect with their customers. The real question is how do you get these designs? Working with designers is the most evident option. DIY design became a popular trend a couple of years ago. And now it’s the era of AI Graphic design. But is AI design the way forward? What does the future of graphic design for brands look like? We’ll answer these questions in this blog.
In 2022, the global market for AI (artificial intelligence) was valued at $136.6 billion. Though AI, as a technology, is old, many of its applications are new. Over the past few years, AI has grown at a remarkable pace. After all, the technology is estimated to give a 40% boost to business productivity. So, AI seems to be everywhere. And AI graphic design has been a hot topic of discussion for the past several months.
Any active internet user must come across news about DALL.E and AI design in general at least once a day. That’s how common the topic is these days. Has this got you thinking about where graphic design is headed? Have you started wondering if AI graphic design tools will replace human graphic designers? If you have these doubts, you are in the right place. We’ll discuss the battle between creatives and bots in this blog.
- An introduction to AI graphic design
- AI graphic design – how far has machine made its mark in the creative field?
- Unlocking the strengths of AI graphic design
- Limitations of AI graphic design that a designer can overcome
- Unlimited design subscriptions – the perfect balance between design automation and designer collaboration
An introduction to AI graphic design
Artificial intelligence, in simple words, is about imparting intelligence to machines. Combining the strengths of image process, pattern recognition, and a host of other technologies, AI design tools help generate new designs.
These AI graphic design systems arrive at new designs based on their training datasets containing massive reserves of designs and data about various visual styles and other information. As you can see, there is a sophisticated system in place at the backend.
Design creation is not the only function of these AI design tools. Many of them also focus on other tasks like image manipulation, image editing, image enhancement, video enhancement, background removal, and so on.
AI graphic design – how far has machine made its mark in the creative field?
Well, we hear people talk about AI design all the time. But has the technology really taken a solid shape? We’ll answer this with an example. Can you tell which of the below images was painted by an artist and which one was generated by an AI tool?
The above images were presented to artists in a survey conducted by The Guardian to understand how much AI art is discernable from that created by an actual human artist. The image on the left is Down in the Laurentides by Homer Watson. And the image on the right was churned out by DALL.E for the prompt, “Landscape oil painting Constable Claude Corot”. Did you spot the AI art correctly?
Well, not everyone can. And that’s how remarkable some AI art generators are these days. So, yes, answering the question we laid down earlier, AI design generation technology has taken a pretty solid shape already.
But one thing to remember is that when we are talking about creating marketing designs and branding designs, it’s not just about aesthetics. It is about designing with a purpose. It’s about creating designs that integrate emotions. Can AI design tools achieve that? We’ll answer that in a moment. But first, let’s talk about the perks of AI graphic design that everyone has been raving about.
Unlocking the strengths of AI graphic design
Save time while managing your creative workflow
Long turnaround times are some of the biggest challenges that brands face while outsourcing design. Sometimes, you plan your creatives ahead and have a solid content calendar. Other times there are last-minute requests that pop up.
For example, you think an image would break down a section in a blog that you are about to publish but you do not have enough time to work with a designer! In such cases, you might find AI graphic design tools resourceful. Most design tools generate designs in seconds.
Tackle last-minute touch-ups with ease
If you have created some designs working with a freelance designer and just before uploading the media you notice that you need to make some changes, going back to the freelance designer for changes might not always be an option. Some design services do not support multiple revisions and some might have a long wait time for your corrections. AI graphic design tools can be used in such instances.
The above video shows quick adjustments you can make with Adobe Sensei, an AI tool that can be integrated with Adobe Experience Cloud. Similarly, if you have last-minute touch-ups you wish to make in your videos and images, AI design tools come in handy.
Another option is to invest in a video subscription like Kimp Video. So you get unlimited revisions and the option to flexibly alter your workflow along with the support for multiple active design requests.
Hiring a designer and managing an in-house design team can be expensive. Traditional design agencies and freelance designers might have limited scope. So, you end up paying for each design you need. In comparison, AI graphic design tools feel like a cost-effective option. The pricing structure varies depending on the design tool you choose. But most of them help you save design costs in the long run.
Of course, if you need to work with a human designer and still save money, there are other cost-effective options to put an end to your design woes!
AI graphic design is fun
In addition to all the serious benefits of AI graphic design, there’s also the fact that AI-generated designs are fun. That’s one reason why even big brands with the best creative teams onboard have been experimenting with AI graphic design and actively speaking about these designs online.
Martini, a Bacardi-owned brand, became the first to use AI-generated visuals in its advertisement. Even brands like Heinz have not shied away from exploring this tech.
Here’s another one from Nutella where the brand used AI to generate packaging design.
So, if you are looking to create something refreshing, something away from your brand’s usual style, AI-generated designs might turn out to be great sources of inspiration to give you a fresh perspective.
Despite all the benefits that AI graphic design boasts of, there are several limitations at the moment that make working with graphic designers a more practical option.
Limitations of AI graphic design that a designer can overcome
In spite of the fact that AI graphic design tools can create some refreshingly new designs in a fast and efficient manner, there are a few limitations that a graphic designer alone can overcome. Let’s look at a few of them:
1. Creativity cannot be hardwired
Creativity comes in many shapes and sizes. Some part of it is inherent in graphic designers, and some parts of it are acquired over their years of experience. It’s hard for machines to mimic this level of creativity a graphic designer has.
AI design tools are trained with man-made datasets. The capabilities are therefore limited to the type of data used to train these tools. Even the most extensive datasets in the world cannot surpass the intuition and creative ideas of human designers.
We’ll give you an example. Take a look at a highly acclaimed print ad from Staedtler.
The above ad delves into the idea of how some of the greatest ideas have the humblest of origins. How some of the masterpieces start out as simple pencil sketches. From the placement of the copy “Where it all begins” to the connection of the idea to the brand, everything about this ad screams creativity. That’s a far-reaching idea for a machine to execute.
2. Emotional depth in designs
Let’s look at an ad to understand why emotions make a difference in ad designs.
If you ask a pattern recognition model, an AI system to analyze the difference between the 2 images in the above ad, it would perhaps say that the dog’s missing in the first one. But a human would understand the loneliness in the first image and how the dog alleviates it in the second one. A human creative team can come up with such emotionally meaningful ad ideas that even the best AI art generators in the world cannot.
To create an emotionally deep ad, it takes a good understanding of human emotions. And this is not a strength of AI graphic design tools at the moment. That’s another area where human graphic designers have a clear advantage. Because when a brand is trying to communicate with its audience through its ads, it cannot do so effectively without adding emotions to its designs. Emotional marketing makes a huge difference, after all.
No matter how sophisticated an AI graphic design tool might be, no matter how well-trained it is to spin out unique designs, it can still not empathize with your human customers. But a graphic designer can! And that makes a huge difference.
3. The human touch
To add a human touch to designs, it takes an understanding of more than just emotions. It takes an understanding of cultural norms based on which the relevance and effectiveness of the ad concept differ. It takes a lifetime of living to understand the little things that feel “human”.
The copy in the below ad summarizes the above idea accurately. A machine cannot understand the relevance of a “baby’s smell” or “paying the toll for the person behind you” to a car ad. So, if you ask an AI copywriting tool to create an ad copy, you might possibly not end up with a more relatable compilation of human things like those listed in the below ad.
From the design perspective, the selective contrast between the opening and closing lines and the rest of the text is also hard to explain to a machine. Overall, for ads like these with a strong human touch, you still need a human creative team rather than an AI graphic design tool.
4. Perfection is a bane at times
AI graphic design tools are trained with several design basics including graphic design principles like symmetry, contrast, and hierarchy. And machines are known for avoiding human error. In other words, machines are built to deliver perfect results. While that might work in a more analytical realm it does not exactly suit a creative space like marketing design.
The imperfectly shaped clouds in a landscape painting, that single missing petal in a floral wreath painting – every little imperfection makes a design look authentic. And this matters a great deal in marketing designs as well.
We’ll give you an example. Have you noticed the Starbucks logo? At first, it looks perfectly symmetrical. But look closely at the face of the siren. The creative team of Starbucks revised the first version of the logo which looked too perfect to feel human. Such little details cannot be replicated by AI design tools. It takes a human designer to achieve that.
Kimp Tip: The need for imperfections in human-centric designs is why concepts like asymmetric balance and off-balance exist in marketing designs. These help shift a viewer’s perspectives and deliver the message in a more memorable manner.
Looking for a convenient way to achieve efficiency and convenience in your design workflow with human designers? Go for a design subscription like Kimp.
5. Common sense makes communication easier
AI graphic design tools deliver a very literal interpretation of your prompt. Even the slightest gaps in your prompts lead to a design that looks nothing like what you had perceived. Communicating your ideas to a human designer might feel much more convenient than coming up with the most accurate prompt for an AI graphic design tool.
Take the below IKEA ad for example. The ad is to represent the idea that sleep is the most effective natural supplement your body needs. IKEA launched a series of ads on this theme to promote its bedding range. Try communicating this idea to an AI-based text-to-image generator and you’ll know what we mean when we say that communicating your ideas to a human designer is much simpler.
Unlimited design subscriptions – the perfect balance between design automation and designer collaboration
AI graphic design tools, as you can see, are pretty convenient to work with. And they can save a lot of time in your design workflow. However, they cannot create magic out of thin air. You cannot use them as standalone tools in your marketing design. You can however use them to augment a designer’s efforts. So, if you have an internal design team and if you wish to improve the team’s efficiency, investing in AI design tools might feel like a very practical move. Another option to save your time and money, if you do not have an in-house design team, will be to invest in design subscriptions like Kimp. Want to see how design subscriptions help automate your design workflow and simplify marketing? Sign up for our 7-day risk-free free trial.