The journey to completing my final images is quite a lengthy one, so I thought it might be worth sharing a brief overview of the steps I follow for each piece.

In short, I create nonsensical titles for artworks by feeding a large dataset of text into a Recurrent Neural Network, and then use photography and Midjourney to visually interpret the generated text.

The dataset I use comes from the BBC’s online library of 33,000 sound effects, which can be viewed here:

By downloading the CSV file I was able to isolate the descriptive titles of all of the sound effects, and feed them into the RNN. A few examples of titles I feed in - ‘Miners chatting in pit baths’, ‘Indisposed chicken’, and ‘Cod machinery’.

The RNN learns patterns within the text and then generates text one letter at a time. It produces contextually relevant text but also creates grammatically incorrect and nonsensical sequences due it’s focus on character-level patterns, lacking high-level language comprehension.

This is why it’s easier to get more suprising results using an RNN rather than ChatGPT - I tried, but it just didn’t provide me with anything usable - the best I got was ‘Celestial Snickerjoust’ and ‘Locomotruffle Polterghastly’. Meh.

When setting the parameters within the RNN, ‘low temperature’ searches require less energy and involves reaching for the most probable answer. ‘High-temperature’ searches require more energy because it involves reaching for less likely answers.

These high-temperature searches might be inefficient and incur a high rate of error, but they occasionally return answers of surprising beauty and originality. They are more magical. Examples include ‘Occasional Village-Bra’, ‘Dumb Train Demons’ and ‘Pet Collapse, Fism Starts’.

Then I add a little Midjourney hot sauce, print out all of my favorites and pin them to my wall so I can sit with them for a few days and see how they all fit together. Rinse / repeat, and that’s it!

Here’s a very basic diagram laying out the procedure, with my role as an artist highlighted underneath.
Thanks for reading   ♱♡‿♡♰