American artist Nathan Shipley uses artificial intelligence to recreate the faces of historical figures, whether they are leaders, kings, presidents, musicians or writers. To carry out his works, Nathan uses historical paintings and illustrations as a basis, to which he adds technology.
“There are some fascinating developments in the field of using artificial intelligence to generate images, from these realistic face recreations to generative abstract fine art,” the artist maintained in dialogue with the art site My Modern Met.
From my background in animation and visual effects, I love exploring the creation of things that were previously impossibleNathan Shipley
Since artificial intelligence creates these portraits using certain parameters, models and data sets, the results can vary. So finding the “perfect fit” is a major challenge. “The process of learning, experimenting and creating is often more exciting than the end result,” notes the artist.
Nathan was able to transform painted portraits into hyper-realistic three-dimensional faces that include features and characteristics absent in the original versions, such as wrinkles and freckles. Incorporating these attributes is key to making the result realistic.
Shipley is a San Francisco-based creative technologist, generative artist, technical director, visual effects supervisor, and motion graphics artist with over a decade of experience. Currently exploring generative art using AI.
He’s fascinated with the use of emerging technologies as tools to create impossible images; technical processes and unintended software combinations to solve complicated visual problems.
His journey into the use of AI for image making began in 2017 with a deepfake project for the Salvador Dali Museum and continued with the GANocracy conference at MIT’s Computer Science & Artificial Intelligence Lab. From there, he has explored the use of GANs to create generative imagery and transform portraits. His work is part of the permanent collection at The Dali and has been featured in national broadcast spots, interactive campaigns and Super Bowl spots.
He has been an invited speaker at the Mathematics Sciences Research Institute, the Digital Forensic Research Lab at the Atlantic Council, and the University of Mississippi.
After spending a year traveling around the world, he’s now based in the Bay Area since 2009, where he lives with his family and a large collection of optics, electronics, and plants.